EXPLORING THE AFRO-SOCA GENRE IN NIGERIA: ARTISTS ASIDE TIMAYA MAKING WAVES
With Timaya’s infectious music, one cannot help but give in to the active rhythm of his signature style, filled with uptempo beats that effortlessly ignite the spirit of celebration and ‘joie de vivre.’ It is within this energetic soundscape that Afrosoca music thrives, embodying a fusion of invigorating melodies and lyrics that exalt the art of revelry and the pursuit of pure bliss. As the crown jewel of this genre, Timaya rightfully earns his legendary status as the King of Afrosoca.
Soca is a vibrant Caribbean music genre that originated in Trinidad and Tobago during the 1970s. This energetic fusion of calypso, funk, Latin music, cadence, and soul captures the very essence of the Caribbean, earning its name from the compressed spirits of “soul of Caribbean” or “soul of calypso.” With its infectious beats and lively melodies, soca embodies the festive and exuberant spirit that beats through the heart of Trinidad’s vibrant festival scene.
So far, the genre has evolved embracing diverse genres, from afrobeats to reggae, dancehall, EDM, and hip-hop, soca has ingeniously blended these elements to create distinct sounds. Within Soca, there are two distinct sub genres including Power soca, boasting a lightning-fast tempo and an explosive surge of energy, and the groove of the melodic-laden Groovy soca, where the tempo is slower.
In a groundbreaking cultural collaboration, Nigerian artists have become trailblazers in propelling Soca music to new heights. They have severely explored Afrosoca, a genre born from the fusion of Nigerian musical influences and the vibrant rhythms of the Caribbean. With its blend of Afrobeat(s), highlife, and traditional Nigerian rhythm, Afrosoca breathes new life into the already vibrant and uptempo Soca.
Artists likes Timaya, Olatunji (the “Groovy Soca Monarch” of the 2015 Trinidad festival), Stonebwoy, Runtown, Yemi Alade, Patoranking, and a host of other musical visionaries have creatively explored captivating patterns within this afrobeats sub genre.
“Shake Yuh Bum” by Timaya and Machel Montano released in 2014 is a party anthem which beckons listeners to embrace the carefree spirit and dive headfirst into a party atmosphere. Filled with the rhythm of Afrobeats as the singing and rapping patterns fuse together, accompanied by groovy baselines and melodic guitar riffs; the catchy, repetitive lyrics intertwine with a carnival-like atmosphere; and a blend of English, Nigerian Pidgin, and Trinidadian Creole lyrics, adds a cross-cultural allure that further elevates its status as an Afrosoca masterpiece.
In 2015, another standout Afrosoca, “Bend Down Pause ” by Runtown featuring the stellar collaborations of Wizkid and Caribbean artists Michael Montano and Walshy, burst onto the scene, appealing to the Afro-Caribbean music world. This infectious party anthem, lyrically crafted to ignite the dance floor, just like “Shake yuh bum bum” beckons listeners to let loose, casting aside inhibitions and surrendering to pure enjoyment. This, and it’s repetitive style, alongside the uptempo, and vibrant, carnival like rhythm, immediately announces the soca elements in the song, which overall, is infused, the afrobeat energetic percussions, and melodious rhythm too.
Some other notable songs in this genre include:
– “Better than them” by Machel Montano featuring Timaya
– “Mating Call,” “Ola,” and “Oh Yah” by Olatunji featuring Runtown
– “Kom kom,” “No pressure,” and “Charger” by Timaya
– “Go down” and “Bum bum” by Yemi Alade
– “Sanko” by Timaya featuring Patoranking and King Perry
– “Dance” by Tekno featuring Runtown
– “Block D Road” by Fay-Ann Lyons and Stonebwoy B
– “Marry me” by Falz featuring Yemi Alade and Poe
– “Duro,” “Pana,” and “Diana” by Tekno
-“Wetin man go do ” by Burna Boy
And many more captivating tracks that will keep you grooving to the Afrosoca beat.
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