Could These Be The Top 10 Empawa100 Females To Watch?


Part One, of Two Part Series. 

We heard it. We watched it. We loved it. Tens of thousands of young hopeful African artist, each busting a note with the hopes to be amongst the chosen 100. Up for grabs? A handsome share of $300,000, split into a whopping $3,000 for the deserving 100. Has there ever been such generous an opportunity for so many young African artists?

We think not. 

It was certainly no surprise, that the internet shook to the vibrant tunes of the Empawa Africa hashtag. Owing to the man of the moment; Mr Eazi. Who sought out to foster independent, emerging talented artistes, into global superstars. An opportunity that only required a 30-second entry video from its participants, from which the Empawa team would chose. 

We waited. Waited. And waited some more. Until finally, the 100 deemed deserving were announced. And boy, was there variety. In a pool of so many, we were bound to have our favourites, who all happened to be female. Ah. The power a woman has to captivate, is one to behold. Interestingly enough, what drew us to some of these young women was not solely talent  which they did not lack in. But rather a few things we picked up, that make them utterly unique, pertaining to their very essence.

Anywho, drifting away from the blabber... Let's get right into the enumeration. 

1) Yviona Reign. 

When we came across a video of Yviona selling her album on the streets of Kenya. Our hearts bubbled up with a great feeling of awe, that came to burst into sheer admiration. We knew she was a fighter. We felt she was humble. Two valuable characteristics that might take her places, just as her incredible sound. Have you heard her recently released song; Coco? If not. Waste no more time! The song is an infusion of a mild afrobeat, complemented with hints of what sounds like a xylophone. In the very streets of Kenya, Yvonia dances along to the catchy rhythm, singing adeptly in Kenyan vernacular. We have no idea what she is saying. But we love the sound of the syllables as they roll off her tongue and onto our ears. Perhaps, she could one day share what her entire song means? A story for another day.

Yviona Reign - Kenyan Singer.


2) Natasha Chansa. 

Oh, Natasha... we are all too familiar with her work, but do not think for a second that this is ample ground for bias. If you have ever been intoxicated by her soothing voice, bopped to the clever composition of her rap, and marvelled at the richness of her lyrics. You know she is one to watch  a rare talent. The year 2018, her debut year, was one that worked in favour of the budding Zambian artist. She acquired a considerable amount of publicitygrew a loyal fan base and seized some great opportunities. Heck, she was even listed as one of the chosen 100 of the Empawa movement. That's one hell of a debut year, if you ask us. Anxiously, we await her new song release. If it is anything like her previous projects; Need Your Fire, or better yet, Pleiades. Excellence, is the only thing to be expected.

Natasha Chansa - Zambian Rapper.


3) Itse.

Fear overcame Itse. Captioned under her entry video were the words; "I was scared of posting my submission. I really don't know why." Thank God she conjured up the courage to take to the world, because she certainly needs to be heard. Under another, she wrote; " Last yearI said I wasn't going to rap anymore because of what someone said to me, this yearI said screw it." But why would this be something exceptional? You might ask. It is the realism. The sincerity. The rawness of Itse, just like her talent. She highlighted that which makes us human. For we all know what it feels like to bare doubt in our own abilities. Don't we? To be hesitant in pursuing that which we desire... even though we desire it most. But we barely show it, almost never. There is power in what the talented Nigerian rapper did. Being afraid… insecure, and not only overcoming that, but being brave enough to show it  to say it. We should all be like Itse. 

Itse - Nigerian Rapper.


4) Olivia Ambani.  

It is her voice. My oh, my, how rich it is. It flows smoothly to a Jazz-like rhythm backed by the pleasant sound of uplifting guitar acoustics. It is simply mesmerising. The Kenyan artist identifies as a soulful singer. She prides herself in her adept freestyling. In fact, her very entry video was one that showed off her free-flowing compositions. Fascinating, isn't it? However, the singer isn't always freestyling, Olivia is quite the skilful songwriter, her most recent project is a collective album called Sweet and Sawa, with a number of Kenyan talents of The Nest Collective. A multifaceted arts cooperative within the city of Nairobi. She sort of reminds us of the world-renowned French-Nigerian artist; Asa. Is it crazy to say the two even resemble? Hopefully, one day the artists will equal in recognition. 

Olivia Ambani - Kenyan Singer.



5) Hanna.


19-year-old Hanna is a gifted lyricist. She is a true musician, deeply rooted in the melodious craft. A guitarist. A keyboard player. And her very own music producer. We can confidently say she has a penchant for everything to do with music. 'Well deserved,' is the sentiment Hanna's Empawa video was glutted with right after her selection. It seemed everyone agreed she was an excellent choice and so did we. To say the Zimbabwean rapper is merely good is a gross understatement. Hanna surpasses good by light years. Word for word, her compositions seem to align in a rhyme packed cohesive piece, that arouses a new appreciation for the art of rap. For the most part, Hanna has thrived as an insta-star, where she intently attained the attention of many and drove in a loyal fan base, with short clips of her talent. Her Debut single 'Gimme', is a mild rhythmic composition, having a video filled with cordial faces and vibrant colours. The rapper speaks of a broken love, as distant as it could get  planets apart. You should see it. 'Hanna'. Remember that name. 


Hanna - Zimbabwean Rapper.


So then, this should be enough for the day. We don't want to overwhelm you with bulks of content  we care. "But you promised 10," you might be thinking. Yes We said 'series' too. We bet you missed that. But don't you fret, the second of the two-part series of "The Top 10 Empawa100 Females To Watch", will be published before you can guess the remaining 5. 

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