Apple Music today launched its Soul September campaign, spotlighting the new wave of Africa’s burgeoning R&B and soul scene. With various iterations of these genres being reinterpreted by African musicians through Alté, neo-soul, Afrobeat and alternative R&B, Apple Music looks to highlight African R&B artists by prominently featuring a multitude of sub-genres.
Featured artists have all created exclusive playlists in this year’s Soul September campaign, and include Nigerian artists BOJ and Ayra Starr, Kenyan doyennes Karun and Xenia Manasseh, Ghanaian singer Camidoh, Botswanan singer Titose, as well as South African vocal talent boasting Halo Yagami, Filah Lah Lah and Marsbaby.
Each carefully curated guest playlist features the artists’ favorite R&B songs of all time, alongside songs that have been vital in helping them craft their own distinct sound. The collection will also include the best new African and international R&B and soul releases as well as all the hottest breaking tracks, music videos and the artists’ Essentials playlists.
“These records in my Apple Music Soul September playlist are ones I subconsciously find myself singing over and over again.” – BOJ
“I have various playlists for various moods. This is a gift with love that I choose to share today in my Apple Music Soul September playlist. Listen and enjoy.” – Ayra Starr
“R&B is so diverse, so I really enjoyed putting this playlist together for Apple Music. Some of these songs made my childhood, and some of these songs I recently came across and am obsessed with. I’m excited to put people onto some lesser known R&B artists from Kenya and East Africa as there are so many of us. This list definitely isn’t exhaustive but it’s a start and I hope it piques someone’s interest to dive deeper.” Karun
“The songs that I chose for my Apple Music Soul September playlist are by women who have inspired and shaped the artist that I am now. Women who have not been afraid to be vulnerable in their music and women whose vulnerability helped me figure out how to explore and express my own. To say I’m grateful for some of the ways their music has changed my life would be an understatement. I honour them and am so happy to be able to get a platform to share what has changed and inspired me with others.” – Xenia Manasseh
“Having come from an R&B foundation and drawing inspiration from Akon, these records in my Soul September playlist help calm my soul and keep me going. I mostly turn on this playlist when I go for a drive.” – Camidoh
“I started listening to R&B at a very young age, and while it’s grown a lot over the years, I’ve seen one thing to remain true–it’s dynamic, it’s interesting, it’s inclusive, it’s soulful and it’s love. That’s why I’ve chosen these songs for my Apple Music Soul September playlist, because though they’re each different in their own way, they all feel like love, and I hope they make you feel that way too.” – Titose
“So I basically chose these records for this Apple Music Soul September playlist because I genuinely connected with each and every single song, old and new. Some of them my mother had cassettes of when I was growing up so they also mean a great deal to me.” – Halo Yagami
“I think I chose these songs for Apple Music’s Soul September because they combine my past, my present and future with music. In so doing they showed me some of my deepest sources of inspiration, whilst also showing how far I’ve come and how far I still need to go.” – Filah Lah Lah
“These tracks in my Apple Music Soul September playlist are songs that inspire me, that have contributed to my growth and excited me as an artist. A lot of these are slow burners, intimate music that takes you somewhere. They show how vulnerable and stripped down soul music can be. I’m happy to say that a lot of the people on this list are my friends and collaborators.” – Mars Baby
Soul September Playlists: https://apple.co/3U1hzjl