Words by: Felicity Martin

The 10 Best Nigerian Songs For Summer, according to Santi

"Picture being with my family and friends and this record comes on, we literally perform the whole thing..."

A wave of new music has been rippling throughout Lagos recently. A rising creative movement in the Nigerian city is responsible for alté (meaning ‘alternative’) music, a genre-bending new scene that champions freedom of expression. At the centre of a crack team of young musicians exploring new sounds is Santi – a poster boy for the alté movement and an artist we dubbed one of the most exciting for 2019 – who infuses more traditional forms of Nigerian sounds with pop, dancehall, rap and beyond.

Having dropped the heatedly-received ‘Rapid Fire‘ last year before more recently unveiling ‘Mandy & The Jungle‘ album, a full-length that resonates with ultra-smooth melodies and some gold standard features, Santi never strays too far from his roots, with ‘Freaky’ sampling Nigerian hip-hop legend Ikechukwu’s massive 2009 hit ‘Shoobeedoo’. Coming from a country with such a rich musical history, Santi runs us through the ten Nigerian tracks that will no doubt stack playlists for the blazing summer months.

1. Rema – ‘Dumebi’

“Crazy record, going to probably be playing this everywhere I go…”

2. Le Mav – ‘Summer Vacation ft. Pyscho YP and Genio Bambino’

“This is one of my favourite tracks right now. Mav produced a gem here and YP and Genio set the mood…”

3. Naira Marley x Zlatan – ‘Am I a Yahoo Boy’

“Everyone loves Naira, makes amazing music. I hope he is free soon and gets back to giving us gems.”

4. Bigiano – ‘Shayo’

“Classic throwback, gets a party going anytime.”

5. Styl Plus – ‘Imagine That’

“Classic throwback, picture being with my family and friends and this record comes on, we literally perform the whole thing, creates a beautiful memory.”

6. Odunsi – ‘Tipsy ft. RAYE’

“Ultimate summer tune, soundtrack to many nights of the summer.”

7. Santi – ‘Raw Dinner ft. Kida Kudz’

“Playing this all summer! I heard it in a few places I’ve been, love the aura it creates.”

8. Burna Boy – ‘Ye’

“No summer without this anthem…”

9. Zlatan x Burna Boy – ‘Killin Dem’

“This always takes the party or gathering to another level whenever it’s played – it’s definitely one for the summer.”

10. Fireboy – ‘Jealous’

“Amazing record, one for the summer for sure!”

Listen to Santi’s ‘Mandy & The Jungle’:

Read: The 15 Most Exciting Artists for 2019

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