10 Bongo Flava classic songs turning 10 in 2024
Back in 2014 Tanzania gave birth to hit songs that not only took the nation by storm but also echoed across international borders.
If those Bongo Flava classic songs remind you of your secondary school or university days, maybe, it's a sweet whisper hinting at the perfect time to embrace a new chapter and say I do.
From Diamond Platnumz My Number One Remix that changed the Tanzanian Bongo Flava scene to Ali Kiba’s Mwana, a comeback hit that took home 5 awards at the 2015 Tanzania Music Awards, these are 10 Bongo Flava classic songs that are turning 10 in 2024.
1.My Number One Remix - Diamond Platnumz Featuring Davido
My Number One, a groundbreaking Bongo Flava track produced by Clever Touch and released in early 2014, revolutionized the genre's landscape. The music video, skillfully directed by Kenya's Ogopa Videos, qualified the song to earn airplay onto major African music channels like Channel O, MTV Base, and Soundcity.
This pivotal moment prompted artists like Vanessa Mdee, Navy Kenzo, Joh Makini, and Ali Kiba to venture to South Africa for international-standard music video productions.
This iconic song earned unparalleled recognition, winning an impressive 7 awards at the 2014 Tanzania Music Awards, along with three accolades at the Channel O Music Awards.
Credited with propelling Bongo Flava from Tanzania to the entire African continent, it stands as the most impactful East African song of the 2010s.
2. Hawajui - Vanessa Mdee
Dropped on November 25th, 2014 Hawajui eternally stands as the inaugural track by a Tanzanian female artist to thrust Bongo Flava into the African music scene.
The music video, helmed by South Africa's Niki Campos, garnered widespread exposure on MTV Base and other esteemed African music channels.
This Nahreel-produced gem not only showcased Vanessa's talent but also marked the initiation of her venture into the international music market.
3. Mwana - Ali Kiba
Ali Kiba's comeback hit, Mwana, remains a standout moment in Tanzanian music history.
Following a five-year hiatus, released on December 8, 2014 the song not only showcased his return but also featured a compelling message, a captivating fusion of uptempo soukous beats and Bongo Flava, and garnered immense hype.
This triumphant return led to the project's outstanding achievement, securing five awards at the 2015 Tanzania Music Awards.
4.Mfalme - Mwana FA Ft G Nako
In his 2014 hit Mfalme, Mwana FA imparted profound life advice, complimented by a Kevin Bosco directed music video.
G Nako's infectious chorus played a crucial role in elevating the song to smash-hit status, and its resonant lyrics have become popular choices for captions.
5. Bum Bum - Diamond Platnumz Ft Iyanya
Diamond Platnumz made a strategic move to strengthen his presence in Nigeria with Bum Bum, evident in the collaboration with Iyanya and the incorporation of pure Afrobeats—a departure from his usual style.
Released on July 7, 2014, the song, featuring Iyanya, received moderate fan reactions, but the choice of Moe Musa, a prominent African music video director at the time, to direct the video underscored Diamond Platnumz's ability to collaborate with top talents.
6. Ole Themba - Linah
Linah decided to pursue the South African market in 2014 by releasing Ole Themba, a love track that bared elements of South African music taste. The video of the song that dropped on 14th July 2016 was shot in South Africa by the heavyweight Godfather Production.
7. Gere - Weusi
Weusi reached unparalleled heights with their 2014 release, Gere, marking a milestone as their most significant smash hit.
This modern rap song that was nominated at the 2015 Kilimanjaro Tanzania Music Awards as the Song Of The Year, undoubtedly solidified their status as the foremost hip-hop group in East Africa during that period.
8.Mdogo Mdogo - Diamond Platnumz
Even a decade later, the enduring quality of the Mdogo Mdogo video is remarkable – it feels as fresh as the day the song was released, no wonder it won the Best Music Video Category at the 2015 Kilimanjaro Tanzania Music Awards.
Launched on 7th July and masterfully directed by Godfather Productions, Mdogo Mdogo stands as one of the pioneering Tanzanian hits that resonated across Africa.
9. Unanichora - Ben Pol Ft Joh Makini
Upon the release of Unanichora, it felt like Ben Pol and Joh Makini were on a mission to revive the fading R&B genre.
Emerging in the mid-2014 music scene, this R&B single became an undeniable hit, particularly owing to the captivating Nisher-directed music video that hooked you from the very beginning to the end.
10. Nani Kama Mama - Christian Bella & Ommy Dimpoz
A decade has flown by since the release of Nani Kama Mama, a Bongo Flava anthem that prompted sons and daughters to shower praises on their mothers.
The song's fame transcended borders, earning it a nomination at the 2015 Kilimanjaro Tanzania Music Awards, although it ultimately lost to Ali Kiba's Mwana.
Yet, the enduring impact of Nani Kama Mama lingers on, as it continues to resonate with audiences celebrating the timeless bond between mothers and their children.