Top 10 African songs

This time I have prepared for you a list of my favourite modern African songs to make your autumn-winter evenings more pleasant. I have especially selected diverse artists from Nigeria, Gambia, South Africa, Cameroon and Senegal. You will find both gentle ballads and dynamic, vibrant pieces. You don’t need to understand any words as the music speaks for itself. By the way, in many music videos you will have the opportunity to learn more about African instruments, dances, costumes and customs. I hope that this list will make you dance and make you feel better. So let’s get started!

P.s. Please note that the order of the songs is random.

1. Africa, Yemi Alade


Yemi Alade is a popular Nigerian singer who with her energetic and very melodious song about Africa says that no matter where we go, there is no place like home. This idea goes with the well known saying “East or West, home is best”. I really like this music video, because it shows the beauty of Africa and pays homage to important African personalities, such as Nelson Mandela and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.


2. Tajabone, Ismael Lo


This time, let’s move to Senegal with the atmospheric Tajabone. In this song you will be surrounded by the sounds of two instruments: guitar and harmonica. The song is nostalgic and makes one reflect. It is a perfect choice for a relaxing evening with a glass of wine or a cup of hot tea. Just listen!


3. Gambia, Sona Jobarteh


As the title suggests, the song is made by a Gambian artist who, in addition to her angelic voice, beautifully plays the kora- an instrument originating from West Africa. In the song you will also hear the popular African drum – djembe (often called a “tam-tam”).


4. Kedike, Chidinma


Kedike – is another energetic song, during which it is impossible not to dance! It is performed by a Nigerian artist – Chidinma. This song always cheers me up immediately. I love watching the rhythmic movements of the women in this music video!


5. A Kele Nta, MHD


As we are already immersed in joyful rhythms, I invite you to listen to this song by the French rapper – MHD, who is of Senegalese-Guinean origin. This piece spreads such positive vibes that it is impossible to not smile at it plays. The music video and the song refer to the wedding of one of the rapper’s friends and was filmed in Dakar. It’s so joyful! This music is proof that rap can be accessible to everyone and does not always have to be heavy or vulgar.


6. Jeeleti, Soulemane Faye


This song gives me goose bumps, every time I listen to it! It is beautiful, touching and talks about love. Jeeleti is sung in Wolof, by a Senegalese artist – Soulemane Faye. I had the opportunity to attend his concerts twice in Dakar. He has an amazing strong voice but inside he is a simple sensitive man who greets all guests before he starts the concert. I leave you with the wonderful sound of the piano and Jeeleti, which tells us how important it is to appreciate other people in our lives.


7. Wiri Wiri, Youssou Ndour


The atmospheric Wiri Wiri is a legend of the Senegalese scene – Youssou Ndour. This song says that in life we often choose complicated paths, looking for a shortcut but the best one is the one we know well, and we should stick to it.


8. Pendhula, Zahara


Zahara is an artist from South Africa. In the title Pendhula (which means “answer”), she asks God to give her an answer. I very much like Zahara’s strong voice and the gentle sound of the guitar in the background.


9. La sauce, Reniss


La sauce, literally means “sauce” (to eat), is an unusual song by the Cameroon artist – Reniss, in which she ironically tells that the key to get a guy is a well prepared sauce (the basis of African cuisine, right after rice). One might say, “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”. The song combines a strong African beat and the contemporary music.


10. Baayo, Baaba Maal


For the end, I leave you with the healing sounds of the Senegalese artist Baaba Maal- Baayo. The beautiful sound of the kora will soothe your soul. This is the perfect song before going to sleep.


Let me know which song your favourite is! Or maybe you know some other nice African music?

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