Sampa The Great Spreads South African Music With The Bass-Heavy ‘Bona’

Last month, Zambian-Australian rapper Sampa The Great announced her upcoming sophomore album, As Above, So Below after releasing two singles, “Lane” and “Never Forget” featuring Denzel Curry. Today, she has released the album’s third single, the bass-heavy “Bona.” According to its press release, it’s influenced by the music Sampa heard as a child in Botswana, borrowing the genres that originated in neighboring South Africa such as kwaito and amapiano.

In a statement, Sampa described the meaning of “Bona,” saying, “I haven’t yet shown the influence Botswana has had on me musically; this is the style, language, and swag of Botswana youth. ‘Bona’ is a chance for me to shine light on other elements of music that I was influenced by when growing up, outside of Zambian music. I want to bring a Southern African anthem to the mix and DJ desks, and show that there’s an array of music coming out of Africa, on top of Afrobeats.”

In a roundabout way, the track represents Sampa joining a growing trend of artists reclaiming dance music, especially through genres originated by Black artists, such as house and techno. In her case, though, she’s an African artist introducing African genres to wider audiences, showing that the continent has more to offer outside of Nigerian Afrobeats.

Listen to “Bona” by Sampa The Great above.

As Above, So Below is due on 9/9 on Vista Loma. Pre-order it here.