Since the 1980s, Nigeria has produced noted reggae acts, the best-known being singer Majek Fashek. While he is known for a roots sound, emerging singer IceSleek prefers dancehall which can be heard on ‘Holla’, his upcoming single.
Produced by Tuffgig Music Empire, a Nigerian-owned company based in New York City and Lagos, it is scheduled for release April 7. ‘Holla’ is a mix of dancehall and Afrobeats, a sound out of Nigeria that has taken the world by storm.
“Nigerian music is basically on a real big level. Its music is what is currently giving it the kind of sophisticated recognition it’s getting now and still going. And you also know that Nigerian artists are the originators of Afrobeats music and it’s global, really global,” said IceSleek.
Thanks to his countrymen, led by Burna Boy, Wizkid and Davido, Afrobeats has made mainstream charts in the United States and United Kingdom. A-list acts like Drake, Kanye West and Rick Ross have embraced the sound. Last December, Burna Boy drew an estimated 20,000 fans to the National Stadium in Kingston, Jamaica, with cameos by Beres Hammond and Popcaan.
IceSleek and Tuffgig Music Empire hope ‘Holla’ can get him a foothold in West African and dancehall/reggae markets in the US, UK and Jamaica. ‘Calm Down’, his collaboration with Worl-A-Girl, is scheduled for a summer release.