5 black artists you must listen to

It’s always a great time to add new music to your playlist. Check out these five black artists who are not only getting noticed on the awards scene, but more importantly, carving out their own sound and following.


Zamani is an 18-year-old triple threat in the form of a singer, songwriter and producer from Halifax. Coming from a family of musicians, she had her first professional performance at the age of 14. Since then, she has received numerous accolades, such as winning the 2019 International Film Festival for Atlantic Original Score.

She was also nominated for two awards at the 2022 East Coast Music Awards. For her song Self-centered, Zamani blends soothing vocals and harmonies with a catchy chorus in a song whose lyrics make it clear that being self-centered and taking care of yourself is a good thing.

Connections: http://www.zamanimusic.ca

Way to try: Outside

Owen (O’Sound) Lee

Owen (O’Sound) Lee from Toronto started singing in church. After studying jazz vocal performance at York University, the vocal arranger, songwriter and producer moved to Nova Scotia in 2014, according to his biography.

Lee is the program coordinator for the African Nova Scotian Music Association. On top of that, his own talent has earned him recognition. He was nominated for the 2019 Professional of the Year Award from Music Nova Scotia and he won the 2017 Rising Star Award from the African Nova Scotia Music Association.

Owen (O’Sound) Lee of the Nova Scotia Mass Choir began singing in church. He has several awards on his resume, including the Rising Star Award from the African Nova Scotia Music Association. (Nova Scotia Mass Choir)

In February 2020, Owen released a single titled Listen for African Heritage Month. The song is about racial discrimination, emphasizing that black people always triumph, and calling on people to step up and be catalysts for change. This song showcases Lee’s incredible voice and strong religious background.

Link: https://linktr.ee/callmeosound

Way to try: Listen


Founded in 2015, MioKal is an Afro-pop, R&B and Zouk group. Médiane Mpunge, Jonathan Mpunge, Passy Grégor Nel, Samy Mpunge, Jean-Michel Dake and Gary Mpunge make up the band and it’s kind of a global composition, with band members from Ivory Coast, Haiti, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Canada. .

According to the group’s biography, the name of the group, MioKal, comes from the union of the names of two villages in the Democratic Republic of Congo – Miole and Kalungu – which were destroyed during the current war.

Last year was particularly good for the band, with nominations for the MNB Awards Breakthrough Artist of the Year 2021 and ECMA’s 2021 African Canadian Artist of the Year.

their song dance with angels is an emotion that explores all the feelings that come with the loss of a loved one – anguish, gratitude and relief in the hope that your loved one is in a better place.

Connections: https://www.facebook.com/miokalband

Way to try: dance with angels

Reeny Smith

Since the release of his first EP in 2015, I am Reeny, the 25 year old Nova Scotia singer, songwriter and producer continues to be one of the hottest emerging artists on the East Coast. She signed with Cymba Music Publishing in 2016 and hasn’t looked back since.

Reeny Smith won Music Nova Scotia’s African-Canadian Artist of the Year award in 2016, 2017 and 2018. (Robert Short/CBC)

She went on to win Music Nova Scotia’s African-Canadian Artist of the Year three years in a row in 2016, 2017 and 2018, as well as Top R&B Artist as part of The Coast’s Best of Halifax awards two consecutive years in 2017 and 2018. His single, Good girl bootyis an upbeat song that encourages positivity in an increasingly harsh world with its catchy chorus that will have you singing along throughout the day.

Connections: https://www.iamreeny.com/about

Tune in to try: Good girl booty


BruceM8 is an artist and producer based in Newfoundland and Labrador. Born in Harare, Zimbabwe, he describes himself and his mix of abstract R&B and brash hip hop as “an all-encompassing experience”.

Throughout 2019 and 2020, BruceM8 has established himself as an in-demand artist, releasing his EPs To stay awake and Pain package with great fanfare. Her biggest single to date, Let go, a self-produced song that combined its hazy melodies and brash R&B style. This song would later lead to production credits on the song by Canadian rapper Tory Lanez A woman on his 2020 album star of the day.

But if he’s going to play favorites, BruceM8 would probably give his single that honor. Numb, released in 2021, which he says is “the greatest song that has ever existed, yet”.

Connections: https://linktr.ee/brucem8

Way to try: Let go


Being Black in Canada

For more stories about the experiences of Black Canadians — from anti-Black racism to stories of success within the Black community — check out Being Black in Canada, a CBC project that Black Canadians can be proud of. You can read more stories here.

(Radio Canada)

Learn more about CBC Newfoundland and Labrador

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