Taking Over – The New Age of Ghanaian Rap

In March of 2017, Ghanaian hip-hop sensation Shatta Wale formerly known as Bandana released the hit “Taking Over” featuring fellow Ghanaians Joint 77, Addi Self and Captain.

This smash hit, produced by Willisbeatz, boasts the beauty of the nation. With each artist comes their own interpretation of what makes the nation as beautiful as it is and why the Ghanaian music industry is sure to take over mainstream media in the next couple of years. What makes this song interesting is the fact that the majority of it is rapped in Ga, one of the many native languages in the country. What makes this aspect stand out is the fact that while Ghana has a plethora of languages, the most spoken one is Twi.

As such to reach a wider range of consumers, many will opt to rap in Twi before they would do so in their other native languages. In these past few years, there has been an influx of rappers who are trying to diversify the market and highlight just how rich the culture is. In the video for Taking Over, each artist switches between pidgin, English, Twi and Ga. While this may seem like an overwhelming number of languages to constantly switch through, it just goes to show how rich the culture really is. There is no one right way of expressing oneself and as such people are free to put local and native knowledge on show. There is not a homogeneous identity when it comes to African culture and Shatta puts it on show in more so than others in the field. As time goes on, there is more hope that more artists will feel compelled to represent the vastness of the nation.

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