Recognized for its evolving genres, London has seen the rise of Garage, Grime, and Dubstep, amongst others genres, and, most recently, has birthed its own sound of Afrobeats. Amongst London’s leading Afrobeats artists stands Omo Frenchie, a Congolese, London-raised artist that has received recognition and praise for his musical versatility. Fluctuating between dancehall, Afrobeats, Afro drill, and much more, he is also a trilingual performer capable of toggling between English, French, and Lingala, one of the languages of the Democratic Republic of Congo. This type of linguistic “dance” is showcased in his song “Bêtise“, in which Frenchie showcases , rather comfortably, his ability to transition between English and French.
Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Frenchie later moved to Peckham, London with his family. Raised in an area of London that has a heavy West African, primarily Nigerian and Ghanaian, and Jamaican influence, Frenchie spent a lot time around these people’s cultures. In an interview with A Nation of Billions , Frenchie noted that he had been interested in other people’s cultures at a young age, and it was because of it that he was able to learn about patois from the Jamaicans or how to pronounce certain words in a particular way when delivering a verse. It is the collection of these experiences and his environment that allow him to be who he is today.
In the same interview with A Nation of Billions, Frenchie discusses the collaborative nature of the UK Afrobeats scene and why, compared to the early days of Grime, it seems much less territorial. To this, he attributes it to the African mentality, that African people are really sharing and the majority of people are quite helpful.
With the experiences that I’ve had thus far and the people with whom that I have spoken with that are from Africa or have family from Africa, I wholeheartedly agree. There is a great sense of community and, more often than not, a willingness to include others into that community whether it be through acts of kindness or simply sharing plantain chips.
To-date, Frenchie has released several tracks, including “BE2GEDDA” featuring Kwamz & Flava and “Chosen” in collaboration with Abra Cadabra, as well as more recent releases in “Yamaha“, “Fufu“, and “Afro Drill“.
The skilled Congolese artist has a larger-than-life presence that can be heard in his music and its incorporation of various cultures and identities; it is what gives him such a unique sound. He is not just the embodiment of the Congolese “sound”, nor is he just the embodiment of Grime, rather he is a collection of these identities and more. As the UK Afrobeats scene continues to develop, which it certainly will, Omo Frenchie is an artist to keep one’s eye on.
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/omofrenchie
Twitter – https://twitter.com/OmoFrenchi
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/OmoFrenchie
Spotify: Omo Frenchie
Apple Music: Omo Frenchie