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The best Nigerian songs of 2023 so far (Q2)

The Nigerian music scene keeps buzzing with stunning releases. PAM presents you the latest hits from Street-Pop and Afrobeats to superstars and up-and-comers. Dive into 2023's hottest new Nigerian songs.

The Nigerian music scene is buzzing with remarkable events and releases. So far in the year, we’re witnessing Rema’s meteoric ascent to legendary status, Kcee’s renaissance into mainstream chatter and acclaim, and Tiwa Savage’s unwavering staying power. Not to mention, the indomitable spirit of street-pop, brought to life by the likes of Seyi Vibes and Shallipopi, among others. 

Per usual, we have handpicked some of our favorite Nigerian songs from the second quarter of 2023 for your discovery and listening pleasure.

Omah Lay – “Reason”

Omah Lay explores thought-provoking existential questions in a fashion now lightly-touted as “Afro-depression” “Reason” is a glimpse of the singer’s personal struggles and coping mechanisms as he poignantly questions, “What is the reason you do not have your own peace of mind? Are you having fun or are you doing this thing to survive?”

Kcee – “Ojapiano”

Kcee is lighting up the Nigerian music scene with a fusion of South Africa’s amapiano and the traditional “Oja” flutes from South Eastern Nigeria. He flaunts his lyrical prowess on the Jaysynths-produced number as he spins a gripping tale of strength, wisdom, and life in the limelight. The sound, aptly christened “Ojapiano”, has re-introduced Kcee into mainstream music chatter and acclaim.

Tiwa Savage – “Pick Up”

Savage employs the enchanting touch of Blaise Beatz to stir things up with “Pick Up” following “Stamina” featuring Ayra Starr and Young John. The record mirrors a soulful yarn of unreciprocated love and the emotional whirlwinds that tag along. “Pick Up” features a sampled chorus of 9ice’s classic “No Be Mistake”.

Asake – “Basquiat”

Asake likens the artistic spirit and legacy of neo-expressionist painter, Jean-Michel Basquiat to his creative journey and identity. Asake’s vocal flexibility, tight precision, coupled with his poetic lyricism in English and Yoruba, blend effortlessly with Magicsticks’ iconic log drums, culminating in yet another classic from this dynamic duo.

Kel-P – “What Have You Done?”

The producer-turned-singer gives his persona a fresh lease on life as he works the vibrant tempo with captivating rhythm and expressive vocals. “What Have You Done” is perfect for intensifying the summer vibe; enough to get even the shyest in the crowd grooving.

Rema – “Charm”

“Charm” brings a laid-back vibe, infusing a fresh dimension to the Ultra edition of Rema’s debut album, Raves & Roses. The London-produced number is a mature piece with light Wizkid-style flair that doesn’t overshadow Rema’s melodic artistry. 

Goldmine – “Esoterica”

The thinkers’ anthem is a reflection on life and its infinite game as the singer muses “Do I fly? Do I fight? And what’s the timeline?”. “Esoterica” think-talks to the relentless tempo of a ticking clock, chasing a mysterious opponent and realizing it’s always been God. These gripping ruminations get a lift from the riveting Yosa-production. 

Burna Boy feat 21 Savage – “Sitting On Top of the World”

With fully-packed stadiums and arenas worldwide to his credit, “Sitting On Top of the World “applauds Burna Boy’s unparalleled achievements, unyielding confidence, and artistic prowess. He joins forces with 21 Savage to elevate the victory anthem to stratospheric levels.

Shallipopi feat Zlatan and Fireboy DML – “Elon Musk”

Making its first splash on TikTok and now donning a pop culture badge impossible to ignore, Shallipopi enlists Fireboy and Zlatan to supercharge the song’s popularity. “Elon Musk” reverberates with themes of ambition, determination, and vivacious celebrations of wealth.

Seyi Vibez – “Hat-trick”

“Hat-Trick” marks a tour de force in the street-pop wave, as Seyi Vibez flaunts his signature style while giving props to Tems and Ayra Starr. The singer also addresses artists purportedly cutting corners with their streaming numbers, as he serves an irresistible concoction of zesty beats, vibrant melodies, and ear-worm choruses.