TRACE Africa and Forbes Africa teamed up in order to set the list of the most influential African artists of 2015. With a growing and increasing music market on the whole continent (unlike Europe), the African youth find in these musicians a symbol of success, achievement and the epitome of the rags to riches dream.
From Bikutsi to Makossa, Soukouss, Rumba and even Afro beat, these singers are bringing a breath of fresh air to the global african scene in all its diversity. They also contributed to the popularization and the export of the African savoir-faire worldwide. Had you needed more conspicuous proof of the excellent african music market health, hip hop tycoon Jay Z and some of his record executives recently went on a talent scouting spree in Nigeria. Moreover, major music companies such as Universal opened a new label dedicated to artists and producers from Africa called Island Africa. French business mogul Vincent Bolloré who is now head of Vivendi Group decided to build 10 olympias (concert venues) in Africa as well. Suffice to say that these elements blatantly shows the exponential growth of the music market and the artistic development of local artists.
Speaking of artists, those who made the prestigious list set by the votes of internet users accurately depicts the striking and heterogenous dimension of the African music (in terms of age and gender) and the wide array of genres it spans. While we utterly would’ve bet in the hegemony of Nigerian artists, it’s actually the controversial Ivorian singer Arafat who tops the list followed by no less than 7 Nigerian musicians! We nonetheless noticed the presence of historic juggernauts of the African scene such as: Magic System, Alpha blondy, Werrason, Koffi olomide, Petit Pays, Youssou N’dour and Papa Wemba who remain irrevocable legends even to the newer generations.
To discover the list, tune into TRACE Africa on Wednesday the 9th of December at 9PM ( GMT).