Average read time: 4 minutes.
Blown Boy Vorster (BBV) says there can only be one king of Afrobeats. Whether that king is him or not is up to us to decide. “The music speaks for itself,” he adds, referring to his 2020 debut single, For Me. Very bold of him to claim the throne with just one song under his belt, right? Well, I, of course, had to listen to the song to make my own conclusion. I will admit, BBV does possess the makings of a king. With his talent and shrewd music business skills it doesn’t seem like it will be long before he rightfully claims his seat on the throne.
The production of the song is top tier and for that, BBV credits Nigerian producer and composer, EMZO. His voice, though smooth and euphonious, is commanding and his lyrics are impressively poetic. Lastly, his website and social media content paint a picture of a consummate professional who knows a thing or two about packaging and branding.
However, from watching BBV’s music video for For Me and talking to him, what really stands out is his supreme self-assurance. His healthy self-esteem is visible in his demeanor, and he speaks about himself and his work with astonishing passion and confidence. I don’t know why this comes as a surprise – the man literally calls himself Blown Boy! “Words carry immense power, and we speak things into existence. I am going to blow up and be a superstar. I am the new face of Afrobeats!” he proclaims.
I believe that actions are more powerful than words, and it seems that BBV holds the same view. The relentless online promotion for his latest single, Lekki Girl (to be released on 18th March) is a testament to that. Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been camping out on his digital platforms for clues on what to expect from Lekki Girl. From the incessant teasers on his Instagram stories and YouTube, he certainly has a firm grip on the marketing side of things.
But why did it take him over a year before releasing a follow-up single? “My commitment to my craft means taking all the time that it needs to produce and release good quality music. During the COVID-19 lockdown, I had time to ensure that my next project was perfect in my eyes. I spent a lot of time working with a team of brilliant creatives and I think the effort will manifest in the product,” he says.
A huge part of that effort was moving to South Africa. Hailing from Lagos, Nigeria where he began his music career, BBV moved to Cape Town in 2021 to introduce his music to a wider audience. Unable to suppress my curiosity, I ask BBV during one of the three calls it took to complete this interview (he is “a very busy man”) what Lekki Girl is about. After learning that the song is an ode to the vehemence of female hustlers, it becomes evident BBV also has some impressive PR skills. International Women’s History Month could have not been a more appropriate time to release a song that celebrates women.
One thing is for sure; this is an artist who promises to deliver music that is intentional and of international standards. His EP, which he says will introduce a unique merge of Amapiano and Afrobeats, will drop later this year. He could have not arrived at a better time! With international sensations such as Wizkid, Rema and Tiwa Savage, to name just a few, Afrobeats is undoubtedly gunning for (long overdue) global dominance.