2023 is looking sumptuous, as delectable as any chef could have cooked up. Chef? Yes, the music chefs—artistes, producers, and everyone involved in the back end of music making—have united efforts to make sure the 2023 music year is just as satisfying, if not greater, than the preceding year.
January, although, is not expected to be a busy month for the release of new music per project, as the top acts or A/B-listers usually target anytime starting from mid-year (June/July) before putting out their projects. This is done because of peak marketing during the summer period, and getting a consensus of music consumption, trends, and/or a paradigm shift in the music culture in that particular year; this allows them to make necessary adjustments in their projects before the eventual release.
Regardless, some of our favourite music acts have taken the bold step (which many might consider a risk) to put out their beloved project this January. Here’s a quick rundown of 5 projects to expect this month.
5. TSC Presents: Creative Anomalies – Reward Beatz, Sheye Banks & Romi
The Skinny Clan (TSC) is a management firm housing three of Nigeria’s finest creatives. Reward Beatz (producer), Sheye Banks (DJ and hype man), and Romi (artiste) are the in-house talents being managed by TSC.
Reward Beatz won big time in 2022. His renowned “Ba . . . Banga!” producer tag rang in our ears all year long. He worked with acclaimed acts like Kizz Daniel, Davido, Blaise Beatz, Young Jonn, and Iyanya in 2022, even having his creative beat-making genius in two of the ‘Song of the Year’ contenders, namely, “Buga (Lo Lo Lo)” and “Xtra Cool”.
Sheye Banks is a notable name in the Nigerian entertainment hub. He is a jack of all trades: DJ, MC, OAP, hype man, A&R and businessman. Sheye Banks aptly describes himself as the ‘VybeKing’. He has two EPs to his name on DSPs, and songs with big names in the music industry like CKay, Andre Vibes, Bella Alubo, and Toby Shang.
Romi, on the other hand, was one of the promising new talents that got introduced to the Nigerian music market last year. His debut eponymous EP is responsible for creating 6 incredible songs, with one in particular, “Dondi”, receiving massive commercial success.
Now, imagine all 3 incredible music creatives on a single project. Well, imagine no longer, for TSC has got our back! The EP, “Creative Anomalies”, will shed more light on the talents of these individuals. As the title suggests, we know not to expect just the normal generic songs, but unique audacious records from the TSC’s housemates. January 11 is the expected date of release.
4. Billion Dollar Dream (Deluxe) – Jeriq
The affluent Igbo-speaking rapper, Jeriq, stormed the music industry with inventive music-making skills, capturing the hearts of music lovers in the Eastern region of Nigeria, a love so contagious, it spread nationwide.
On May 26, 2022, Jeriq put out his debut album, “Billion Dollar Dream”, a 12-track project that featured PsychoYP, Dremo, Flavour, and Ghanaian, Kofi Jamar. In the album, Jeriq shared stories about his rough upbringing to his career aspirations, congruous with the album’s title, “Billion Dollar Dream”. He did all that in his local dialect, never washing it down to fit the lingua franca of the mainstream media.
By announcing the Deluxe version of his successful debut album, Jeriq is set to take his craft a notch higher, even introducing his sound to new listeners. He has added 6 new tracks, bringing “Billion Dollar Dream (Deluxe)” to a cumulative 18 tracks.
Impressively, the track arrangement of “Billion Dollar Dream (Deluxe)” induces keen observation because unlike the influx of deluxe albums recently, which have similar track arrangements to their original versions, that is, having the newer songs before or after the normal arrangements of the former tracks, Jeriq’s upcoming album embraces a different format.
By re-arranging the tracks in the Deluxe, Jeriq’s goal might be to tell his life’s stories in a different light, evoking fresh feelings from his old listeners (as regards the original), while stimulating his new audience to notice the intricacies of his sound.
The official tracklist for “Billion Dollar Dream (Deluxe)” is not out yet as of the time of writing, but come January 26, 2023, we expect greatness from the buzzing rapper.
3. Continental Playlist – King Perryy
King Perryy is no stranger to the mainstream media. Bangers like “Go German”, “Man on Duty”, “YKTFV”, and “Waist” immediately come to mind on hearing the polished singer’s name. His album, “CITIZEN OF THE WORLD”, was so brilliant a debut, almost every blog rated it in the higher units value.
The cover artwork of his forthcoming project, “Continental Playlist”, features King Perryy as a triumphant boxer (in a ring) who’s knocked down his opponent, the world, represented by a fallen male character but with a broken globe on his head.
The playlist comprises 7 songs including “Turkey Nla (Remix)” with Tekno. The full tracklist is yet to be unveiled, however, we know that “Continental Playlist” is scheduled to drop on the 27th of January.
Genres such as Afropop, dancehall, and pop are expected to be explored by the experienced artiste that King Perryy is.
2. Gift of God – Shatta Wale
Shatta Wale needs no introduction. He is one of the living legends of African music. He tells his stories through dancehall rhythms.
Shatta Wale has consistently put out a body of work every year since 2014, a run unmatched by any of his contemporaries.
His soon-to-be-released album carries a heavenly theme—“Gift of God”. As usual with Shatta Wale, fans expect witty word plays, bouncy productions, and a well-curated list of featured acts.
Medikal, Vybz Kartel, Jupitar, Gramps Morgan, DarkoVibes, and Efya are expected to add their unique flair to the 16-track “Gift of God” album slated for a January 18 release date.
1. Soundtrack To The Good Life – Ajebutter 22
The ‘Minister of Enjoyment’ as he rightfully calls himself is finally coming out of the shadows by putting out his first album in almost 5 years.
Ajebutter 22 has carved a niche for himself which involves making music that toasts the good life. Even in songs wherein he highlights the adversities of daily living, he does so in grandeur.
In 2022, he teased his new album a couple of times, but continued postponing the release date (for reasons best known to him and his team); with 4 leading singles released last year, including “Unconditionally” with Oxlade and the most recent, “Enjoyment” with Ajebo Hustlers, Ajebutter 22 perfectly set the scene for what to expect from the forthcoming “Soundtrack To The Good Life” album.
His last album, “What Happens in Lagos”, sets the stakes high as to what fans should expect to hear sonically and lyrically in the “Soundtrack To The Good Life” album when it drops on January 20.