Def Jam Records, in conjunction with Def Jam Africa, in the weekend announced the release of Rhythms of Zamunda, a collection of originals from African artists inspired by the highly anticipated comedy which will stream on Friday March 5, 2021.
The song will be part of a 16-song Pan African compilation album that bridges the distance between countries and cultures.
According to Variety, Rhythms of Zamunda traces a musical roadmap through Western, Eastern, and South African soundscapes and introduces this synergy to listeners worldwide.
Apart from Diamond, the record boasts contributions from Nigerian superstar Tiwa Savage and Tekno, the late DJ Arafat from Côte d’Ivoire, Prince Kaybee and Msaki of South Africa, and Fally Ipupa from the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The album is curated by CEO, Universal Music South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa Sipho Dlamini, who said that it was important for Def Jam Africa to be involved because the first film was so legendary to Africans in the diaspora.
“The film franchise is tongue-in-cheek but conveys a rich quality of life in Africa. That is reflected in the music on Rhythms of Zamunda. We wanted to represent some of the sounds that are relevant, impactful and current on the continent,” said Dlamini.
The first taste of the project, Black & White, comes from Nasty C, the most-streamed artist in South Africa, and features US R&B singer Ari Lennox.
Though the previously announced soundtrack to Coming 2 America is also set to feature artists like Megan Thee Stallion and Bobby Sessions as well as songs performed in the film, Dlamini credits 2018’s Black Panther: The Album and its similar fusion of African music with American hip-hop as an important blueprint for “inspired by” albums.
In 2019, Grammy Award winning reggae band Morgan Heritage blasted Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority (TCRA) for continuing to ban the song.
The song was banned by TCRA from receiving airplay in 2018 just months after its release terming it as being against the country’s morals.
TCRA argued that the song was actually blasphemous with the video praising indecent ladies.
Hallelujah got more than a million views within the first 24 hours that it was uploaded on Diamond’s YouTube channel and since been viewed more than 12 million time on YouTube.
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