Recap: Coke Studio Africa Episode 2

Saturdays 8-9PM on NTV / 9-10PM on QTV

After a successful premiere episode, Coke Studio Africa fired on to its second episode, first showing on 12th October with another interesting lineup of performances from Octopizzo (Kenya), Waje (Nigeria), Qwela (Uganda), and Diamond Platnumz (Tanzania) with Lady Jaydee (Tanzania) and HHP (South Africa) making a second appearance.  Another objective of the series came out clearly in this episode – to re-introduce  past musical heavyweights to the continent’s younger audiences who have probably never even used a cassette tape.

Octopizzo started off quite unexpectedly with a customized version of Cameroonian legend Bebe Manga’s 1980 hit AmiO for his intro (complete with some cringe worthy ad libs – what was that high pitched shot about?) which lead to probably the best live performance of his hit single Ivo Ivo since the track came out – largely credited to the band which kicked some proper ass throughout the night.

Lady Jaydee thankfully made a second appearance after being somewhat underutilized in her first performance with Salif Keita. She made light work of her track Joto Hasira including the rap verse originally by Professor Jay, proving why she still retains her popularity in East Africa as a great singer and performer.

As for her Tanzanian counterpart Diamond Platnumz’s performance, the feeling was that (like Ocotopizzo) his performance of P Square’s Temptation was saved by the stellar work of the band and HHP’s rap segment. That band can make anyone sound like a million bucks, honestly.

The defining moment of the episode was when Nigeria’s Waje teamed up with Ugandan band to perform Papa Wemba classic ballad Rail On. This was a perfect performance in all respects with Waje’s commanding vocal presence taking the cake, doing the song much deserved justice and raised the bar for all other artists who will come on the show for future episodes.

A new episode of Coke Studio Africa airs today. Let’s see what they’ll have in store for us.