The most exciting vibes and sounds are currently coming out of Africa with African music evolving daily on a greater pedestal. The continent is so vast and varied but yet the most thrilling pop sounds are emanating all over the continent from South Africa, Ghana, Angola, Mali, Uganda, Nigeria, Senegal, Congo and the rest. Legends like Fela Anikulapo Kuti, Miriam Makeba, Youssou Ndour set African music on the world map and the recent growth of the hip hop genre has further established firmly African music on the world music industry. With the internet turning the world into a global village and international collaborations that has penetrated the international market, the accessibility of the world to African music has further been enhanced and even the direct impact of African music on the African economy cannot be understated. The music industry has become an unlikely source of employment for many African youths either as dancers, singers, producers, tour managers, make-up artistes and the likes. Also the demand for African music stars the world over has increased with our finest acts going abroad to perform in front of mammoth crowd.
The big hitters in the international music industry already recognize the potentials in African music and the vibrancy of the genre hence they are setting stall in Africa by the day in order to fully tap into the limitless potential in African music. Another pointer to the growing status of African music is the influx of the biggest international stars to Africa to perform be it Cairo, Johannesburg, Lagos, Accra or Dakar, the world stars are feeling the vibes from Africa and are tuning to the sounds of African music. A few years back, going to club or partying in Africa meant jamming the best of international songs but the African music resurgence has overshadowed the craving for western music, as a matter of fact any African party or club night would have a medley of hits by the likes of Wizkid, Mafikizolo, Sakordie, R2bee’s, Navio, Fally Ipupa etc. on heavy rotation or risk the ire of patrons. The role of the media cannot be over-emphasized too, African airwaves that was notoriously foreign-centric have adopted an approach of celebrating her own with massive airplay of African tunes unlike what obtained in the recent past.
World music has benefitted in abundance from the injection the new sounds from Africa; African music now has a global appeal and a wider audience. African music is unique in the sense that everything African is rhythmic, we love to dance, we love to be happy and the vibrancy in our culture is inevitably portrayed by our music and the world cannot resist the energy of our tunes. African acts like Wizkid , Davido, Ayo Jay, Ali Kiba and Tiwa Savage are making serious inroads into the mainstream music market in America, signing deals that would further elevate their career on the international scene.
So are you looking for the sounds of the future? Well it is here already, it is what we are hearing now, and the future of world music is here in Africa.