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Nigerian Singer Ayra Starr Shines As Spotify’s EQUAL Ambassador

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Nigerian Afrobeats luminary Ayra Starr, celebrated for her chart-topping hits such as “Rush,” “Sability,” and “Rhythm & Blues,” recently stepped into the limelight as the focal point of Spotify’s esteemed EQUAL Africa and EQUAL Global initiative throughout May.

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This recognition places her alongside the illustrious Tiwa Savage, solidifying her status as one of Africa’s foremost musical talents to garner both regional and global acclaim.

In the words of Monica Kemoli-Savanne, Spotify’s Senior Artist & Label Partnerships Manager for Sub-Saharan Africa, this initiative resonates with the platform’s unwavering commitment to championing women within the music industry, fostering an environment of inclusivity and empowerment. Ayra Starr’s ascendancy on the global stage serves as a poignant testament to Africa’s rich reservoir of talent, underscoring the transformative power of providing a platform for burgeoning artists.

Spotify’s EQUAL program has emerged as a catalyst for change, hosting 15 impactful activations and catalyzing over 14.8 million artist discoveries through its curated playlists in the preceding year alone. Notably, EQUAL artists received a staggering 11,800 editorial playlist additions, indicative of the program’s far-reaching influence and ability to amplify underrepresented voices.

Ayra Starr, whose latest offering “Commas” has already amassed a staggering 35 million streams on Spotify since its February release, reflects on her distinctive musical style, attributing her success to her ability to carve out a distinctive niche within the industry. Her selection as Spotify’s EQUAL artist embodies a profound sense of gratitude and responsibility, as she endeavors to represent not only women in Afrobeats but African women at large on the global stage.

In her own words, Ayra Starr articulates the significance of her ambassadorship, expressing gratitude for the opportunity to serve as a beacon of inspiration for aspiring female artists within the genre. As the EQUAL program continues to champion diversity and inclusivity, Ayra Starr stands poised to leave an indelible mark on the musical landscape, igniting a wave of empowerment and artistic innovation for generations to come.

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Dennis Ombachi Leads The Way In TikTok’s New Change Makers Initiative

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TikTok has unveiled its TikTok Change Makers Program, a pioneering global initiative aimed at recognizing and supporting creators and non-profits that drive significant social impact through the platform.

The six-month program is structured to help selected creators from around the world build engaged communities, reach new audiences, and unlock real-world opportunities. Participants will gain access to specialized tools, resources, and donations for their designated non-profit organizations.

A key component of this initiative is the TikTok Change Makers Grant, which will distribute over $1 million to more than 30 global and local non-profits. Each of the selected Change Makers will receive a $25,000 donation to support their advocacy work, amplifying their ability to make a difference.

One standout in this inaugural group of 50 global Change Makers is Kenya’s Dennis Ombachi, known on TikTok as @theroamingchef. Dennis has become a beloved figure on the platform, using his culinary talents to feed those in need across Nairobi.

Dennis’s selection as a Change Maker underscores TikTok’s commitment to uplifting diverse voices and addressing global issues through local actions. As one of four African creators chosen for the program, Dennis’s story exemplifies the profound impact individuals can have when supported by a platform like TikTok.

This initiative highlights TikTok’s dedication to fostering a global community committed to positive change and showcases the transformative power of individual actions in inspiring widespread community support.

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Icon Reggae Band Morgan Heritage’s Triumphant Return with Latin-Inspired Single

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Morgan Heritage, the legendary reggae band with multiple Grammy Awards to their name, has made a remarkable return with their vibrant new single “Te Adoro.”

Translating to “I Adore You” in Spanish, this song highlights the band’s impressive versatility and their ability to blend genres, reaffirming their status as pioneers in the music industry.

“Te Adoro” is the band’s first major release since their celebrated album “The Homeland” was unveiled in April 2023. With its irresistible Latin rhythms, the single is set to captivate a global audience, showcasing Morgan Heritage’s broad appeal and innovative spirit.

The band describes “Te Adoro” as a universal ode to the complexities of sustaining a relationship while keeping the initial passion alive. Mojo Morgan shared, “Singing these words in Spanish was a fun creative process for us and an amazing learning experience. Plus, it just sounds sexy to be honest! Peetah, Gramps, and I enjoyed this new musical venture, and we can see ourselves exploring an entire Latin album in the near future.”

In addition to their musical triumphs, Morgan Heritage continues to demonstrate remarkable resilience following the tragic passing of their beloved brother Peetah Morgan. The band’s enduring legacy is carried forward by Jemere Morgan, son of Gramps Morgan, who has taken on the role of lead vocalist. Despite their loss, Morgan Heritage remains a source of inspiration and strength for fans worldwide.

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Bad Boys: Ride Or Die Drops Epic Soundtrack with Sean Paul, Shenseea, and More

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Celebrated Jamaican artists Sean Paul and Shenseea are on the official soundtrack for the upcoming film Bad Boys: Ride Or Die, starring Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, which debuts this weekend.

Sean Paul appears twice on the ten-track compilation: “Light Em Up” with Will Smith, and the title track “Bad Boys” with Argentine rapper Trueno. Shenseea teams up with Puerto Rican rapper Myke Towers for “Bam Bam,” a nod to Sister Nancy’s iconic track. The soundtrack also includes American rapper BIA’s “Oh No (2023)” from her EP Really Her, which samples Red Rat’s 1997 hit “Tight Up Skirt.”

This marks the second collaboration between Sean Paul and Will Smith, who previously teamed up on a version of Shaggy’s “Hey Sexy Lady” in 2002. Shenseea and Myke Towers also collaborated on “Infamous,” an original song from the Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse soundtrack, sampling Barrington Levy’s 1985 hit “Here I Come.”

Bad Boys: Ride Or Die, directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, is a sequel to Bad Boys for Life (2020) and the fourth instalment in the franchise.

Previous soundtracks for the series have featured notable tracks like Buju Banton’s “Murder She Wrote” in Bad Boys For Life (2020), and classics such as Diana King’s “Shy Guy” and Inner Circle’s “Bad Boys” from the original Bad Boys (1995).

Full Tracklist:

  1. Black Eyed Peas x El Alfa feat. Becky G – “Tonight”
  2. BIA x JID – “Lights Out”
  3. ScarLip – “Mike T”
  4. BIA – “Oh No”
  5. Flo Milli – “Duh!”
  6. Shenseea x Myke Towers – “Bam Bam”
  7. 21 Lil Harold – “Brand New”
  8. Becky G x Luisa Sonza x Papatinho – “Flores Pa Ti”
  9. Will Smith x Sean Paul – “Light Em Up”
  10. Sean Paul x Trueno – “Bad Boys”

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