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WAH GWAN, <<First Name>>! Happy Black History Month, and welcome to your monthly(ish) round-up of new music from around the globe, centering Africa and her diaspora (curated by Jamila). If you're in a position to support di ting, buy me a "coffee". Shoutout to Tatiana and Dominique for sponsoring this issue. 🙏🏾

Yes, the last NEXXTING playlist really did drop over 3 months ago 😬. Doh kill me! I made up for it 😌: Scroll for all of 2020's 3 unreleased playlists - the best Q4. SN - peep the design growth with these covers 💅🏾. Oh! And remember the TinyTree microgrant I mentioned NEXXTING winning last year? You'll find a link to the interview I did with its founder Justin at the end. 🙌🏾

Cover art inspo

06 — Spotify — Apple — YouTube

06 kicks off with some real smooth chunes—from 🇳🇬 Afro R&B to 🇯🇲 Reggae to 🇺🇸 Lo-fi/R&B vibes—my favorite of which are 🇺🇸 THEY.'s "The Moment" and 🇬🇧 🇳🇬 ENNY & Amia Brave's "Peng Black Girls". Next, we move onto some serious bars with 🇬🇧 🇯🇲 🇬🇩 🇳🇬 Ghetts & Skepta's "IC3". (Apologies in advance for how profane this section gets lol) Be sure to crank the volume on 🇿🇦 trap track "Thembi". Ever heard a Bajan rapper? I found the track "Bloodrush" because of 🇸🇩 Dua Saleh and kept it for 🇧🇧 Haleek Maul's verse. This is about where the energy starts to pick up on this playlist. I love having Rock, Gqom, and even Jersey Bounce in this section. Things come full circle at the end, closing out on the same mellow vibes with which we start: 🇬🇧 Col3trane & Mahalia's gorgeous track "Pretty".

Cover art inspo

07 — Spotify — Apple — YouTube

🇿🇦 Afro House might be the star of 07. "SummerYoMuthi", "Choko - Amapiano Remix", "Somebody Call 911", "Kemete - Radio Edit" and "Amandla" almost made me dust off Lynda DJ courses to finally learn how to make mixes because, wow. This playlist might actually be the most diverse of the trio in this newsletter. Not just in genre and artist roots but also in language - we've got Pidgin, Zulu, Xhosa, Patois, Español, Português... In fact, my favorite song on this playlist is the frisson-inducing "CORPS" by 🇫🇷 🇨🇲 songstress Yseult. Isn't it beautiful!? This track actually kicks off the distinctly chill/cafe vibes section of this playlist. Things start pick up again with 🇯🇲 Chronixx's "So Brutal" as we close out with Dancehall, Afropop, and Rap. SN - Remember "Man's Not Hot"? The comedian/rapper 🇬🇧 🇬🇭 Big Shaq is back with "Chicken Shop Freestyle" 😭. On a more serious *Jme voice* note, "Enough is Enough" by 🇬🇧 🇳🇬 BackRoad Gee, Lethal Bizzle and Jme gets me so hype, I go full road gyal 😤 (in my head). Speaking of bad gyals, shoutout to SHEER for putting me on to the final track of this playlist - 🇺🇸 Iamdoechii's "What's Your Name?"

08 — Spotify — Apple — YouTube

08, the final playlist for 2020 releases, opens with tracks from my favourite genre, 🇿🇦 AmaPiano. It was only right — both "Woza" by Sha Sha (produced by Kabza De Small, DJ Maphorisa) and "Funu", produced by the same legendary duo and featuring vocals by TRESOR, are absolute masterpieces.  From Afro House, we move into some 🔥 Afropop (like 🇨🇩 Fally Ipupa's "Mon bébé", which I feel compelled to do drill moves to...imagine 😂) and Dancehall (like 🇯🇲 Busy Signal's "Hot Zinga") before heading into a decent dose of Rap, Hip Hop and Jazz. Like, how smooth is Ezra Collective's Jazz remix of "Children of the Internet"!? And how cold are the bars in "Product Of My Environment" and "Outside"!? 😩 Winding down with a mix of alt, R&B, (Moroccan 🇲🇦) Gnawa, and Afro-Jazz vibes, this playlist closes out with a track chosen as a tribute to a don we lost in 2020: "The Chocolate Conquistadors" by Jazz fusion band 🇨🇦 BADBADNOTGOOD and underground Hip Hop legend 🇺🇸 MF DOOM (RIP).


In issue 04 I shared the news of winning a TinyTree microgrant in summer 2020, which enabled me to expand NEXXTING's presence beyond just Spotify to Apple and YouTube. (Shoutout to Vicky for encouraging me to apply!)

This tiny win came at a time when I wasn't really sure what NEXXTING should be or if anyone (besides my friends) would care about it. By just applying, the vision for NEXXTING became clear. 
"It’s very weird to me that 'global charts' is mostly US music. By only listening to artists that are already popular, we miss out on so much talent, and that bothers me. My mission is to debunk the myth of white/Western music superiority and to one day have global music charts that are a true reflection of the globe.”
A bonus in all this is that I gained a new music-obsessed friend in TinyTree's creator Justin Barber (who just so happens to also be a product deisgner — look the universe 🙌🏾). Last fall, we recorded a chat that's still my most in-depth public discussion about NEXXTING and music to date. Watch the full thing here.
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