One can still vividly recall how not too long ago, we greeted ourselves, ”Happy 2018”, but like a moment in the world of the Super hero character, ‘Flash’, half of the year is gone already and we have some amazing music to thank for the ride.
2018 has been a remarkable year in the Nigerian music scene, it has been a year of the ‘Shaku Shaku’, major concerts by Nigerian artists both home and abroad and non- stop hit songs.
To recap these highs, super highs and memorable tunes, we present the 15 best songs of 2018 thus far. (The list is in no particular order)
1. Wizkid – ‘Soco’ feat Terri, Ceeza Milli and Spotless
Wizkid calls ‘Soco’, the song of the year, and judging by the reaction you get every time the song is played, he may just be right.
Performed alongside members of his Starboy imprint, Soco is the jam jam.
The one song that literally sets the dance-floors on fire and sees even the least talented dancer put his hands together in a lock as you vibe to this.
Soco is light, the production is smooth and the lyrics are filled with simple call and answer expressions that make you want to have repeated listens.
2. Davido – ‘Assurance’
Fresh from winning the Song of the Year and Artist of the year awards at the Headies 2018, Davido who has regained top form since his back to basics deft move released Assurance with the surrounding drama of unveiling his girlfriend, Chioma, scored another hit that will surely see him win more end of the year awards.
Assurance grew into more than a song, it became a part of our daily prayers, a pop culture word and a trending topic for months.
The music itself is dripping in some pulsating production and catchphrases like, ”Biggie, Biggie, Heavy, Heavy”, that gives the song an added electricity.
3. Burna Boy – ‘Ye’
When Nigerians begin to demand that a song is identified as the next national anthem, then you know that the song is a near classic, if not one already.
To Burna Boy’s music, there are layers that are almost not unravelled at first listen, and Ye provides that mystic feel of drawing you into a corner at Fela’s Shrine on a Friday night.
Months after its release, the song was given life yet again on the music charts following the release of Kanye West’s album with the same title.
”Ye”, which borrows heavily from the late Abami Eda, Fela Anikulapo Kuti‘s, ‘Sorrow, Tears and Blood’, is the everyday Nigerian anthem.
”Ye” is that rich kid and his friends heading out and asking themselves, ”My Nigga, what it gon’ be, G-Wagon or de Bentley”.
Ye is delivered so lazily, yet breeds the right amount of energy, Ye is playful, yet touches on serious matters, Ye is brilliant music and one that is addictive.
ALSO READ: 10 essential songs by Fela Kuti
4. Olamide – ‘Kana’ feat. Wizkid
Wizkid has been at the end of plenty of great music this year as he makes dropping hit songs look so easy.
The duo previously worked together on Olamide‘s ”Omo To Shan”, and this time they reunite to create this cult anthem, that could light a fire to your headphones.
Ignore the video, enjoy the music, Kana bangs hard.
5. Olamide – ‘Science Student’
Excessive drug and alcohol intake is a prevailing issue that definitely needs to be addressed.
And while it is not yet clear where Olamide is actually standing following the release of this song, which generated quite some controversy.
‘Science Student’ is created to take your dance skills to the next level, with the music craftily engineered to help you lose your home training, and it again proves Olamide’s consistent hit-making prowess.
6. Naira Marley – ‘Issa Goal’ feat. Olamide and Lil Kesh
When the song was originally released late in December 2017, shortly after the Super Eagles attained qualification to the World Cup 2018, those with discerning ears could tell that a storm was brewing, as Naira Marley had seen the future and keyed into it while others were still asleep.
Then as the build-up to the World Cup drew closer, he released the video in April and the result is a rousing psalm at every football gathering.
”Issa Goal” thrives on the mood of the nation, the lyrics are broken into every day lingua, while the production is vibrant as the trio come together to deliver a song that may just be evergreen especially with the Nations Cup coming up soon.
The success of the single has already birthed a remix.
7. Falz – ‘This is Nigeria’
6.8 million Youtube views in one month paint a picture of how well received this state of the nation address by Falz is.
‘This is Nigeria’ is simply happenings around the country captured in a creative manner and musically served on the prime-time version of the network news, which is the internet.
The song which inspired reactions and a number of think pieces, and continues to generate controversy is an imitation of Childish Gambino’s, ”This is America” and is perhaps Falz’s most prolific work yet.
8. Wizkid x Duncan Mighty – ‘Fake Love’
For someone, Wizkid regards as a legend, it is no surprise to see the collaboration between the duo grow into one of the biggest songs this year.
‘Fake Love’ is the near perfect piece as Duncan Mighty proves that despite being off the scene for a while, he hasn’t skipped a musical beat.
The song tells a story of love unrequited, except when money is gone, and has an explosive hook that gets you screaming at the top of your voice.
9. DMW – ‘Mind’
What do you get when talented individuals in DMW boss, Davido team up with members of his crew, Mayorkun, Dremo and Peruzzi? the answer is a banger.
Davido has always scored a trick with love songs and as there is never a thing as too much love songs, as together with members of his label, they make your ‘Mind’ breathe love with this song as they sing, ”One of my slay queen is a call away, But I drove a thousand miles to find you”.
10. Tekno – ‘Jogodo’
Feel free to call this Kpolongo 2.0 and you won’t be wrong.
Kpolong is a classic song, that was originally written and performed by the duo of Mad Melon and Mountain Black jointly known as Danfo Drivers, inspiring a re-creation by Tekno in Jogodo, which leaves a mix of nostalgic feeling with a modern touch.
Also fueled by the controversies of copyright theft that trailed the song, ‘Jogodo’ is one of the urban songs that is quite joyful to the ears.
11. DJ Spinall – ‘Nowo’ feat. Wizkid
It is almost impossible not to move your head anytime this song comes on.
Another song from Wizkid that is not saying much but is melody heavy, ‘Nowo’ is simple, delivered effortlessly and has evolved into one of the defining songs of 2018.
12. Dj Spinall – ‘Baba’ feat. Kiss Daniel
DJ Spinall sure knows how to select the right artists to work with and ‘Baba’ with Kiss Daniel is another one that has become an instant fan’s favorite since it was released.
Subtly addressing some issues surrounding his former contract, as he sings, ”No collabo, we still dey reign, For this collabo, wahala dey- Baba”, Kiss Daniel reminds all that he is now the boss in the game.
13. Mr Real – ‘Legbegbe’
Released as a single late 2017, 2018 was the year that the song grew wings and flew into every corner of the country following the release of the video early in the year.
Legbegbe is the ‘Shaku Shaku’ workout song, energetic; vibey and with his performances always sending the crowd wild, the song which was nominated for the Best Street Hop at the 2018 Headies Award is a street anthem that has left its mark on the first half of the year.
14. Wande Coal – ‘So Mi So’
When Wande Coal boasted in his 2016 hit single, Iskaba, that nobody does it like him, it was actually a statement of fact.
‘So Mi So’ is everything that Wande Coal represents, smooth vocals, sterling delivery, hidden incomprehensible chants and appealing rhythm added to production from Juls makes this the ultimate crowd pleaser at every listen.
15. Adekunle Gold – ‘Ire’
Off his album, About 30, Adekunle Gold delivers this one song where he doesn’t talk on love.
It’s damn near impossible not to feel a surge of righteous pride and patriotism every time this song comes on Adekunle Gold assures those who seek to exit the country that the grass is not necessarily greener on the other side.