When creative artists with similar ambitions meet, what one expects is nothing but a perfect creation.
It is evident that through One More Touch, Uganda’s Bebe Cool and Malawi’s Tay Grin did their homework well and one can only admire how the two artists have seamlessly embraced each other’s style while maintaining their original touch.
Already on YouTube and a number of Africa’s TV Channels, soon One More Touch would be a household hit just like it has been before for Bebe Cool and Tay Grin.
Perhaps it is too soon to give a verdict on the new video and single but those who know what good music is will surely not wait for too long to make that decision.
According to the press release by the two artists, the new single is a celebration of diversity, creativity, class and of course shared common philosophy. As the two strive to expand their markets, One More Touch will surely take them across Africa.
“Bebe Cool is someone I have looked up to and admired musically. Getting to know him has proven we are like minded and very serious about our music. We share common philosophy. I enjoyed working on this song with Bebe Cool and I can’t wait for the fans to listen to the song and watch the video,” said multi-award winning artist Tay Grin.
Bebe Cool, who has delivered a chart-topping hit every year for the last 15 years, said he is impressed with the new single and video.
“Tay Grin is a big hip-hop star not only in Malawi but Africa as well. I was amazed by his dynamism in blending the Afro beat sound on this sweet melodious single. No matter the genre, music is universal in every sense,” he said.
Tay Grin has numerous international collaborations which include Beenie Man (Jamaica), Brick & Lace (Jamaica) and more than 20 artists across Africa. He won Channel O Music Awards in 2009 before winning 15 more awards in the United Kingdom and Malawi.
He has performed in the United Kingdom, United States, Iceland and Ireland plus a number of other African countries. His music videos have enjoyed massive airplay on local TV and radios as well as international TV channels like Channel O, MTV Base and Trace Africa. For his promotion and preserving of culture in his music, Tay Grin was this year recognised by chiefs with a Chewa Heritage Award. His recent hit ‘Tola’ has been nominated for All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA).
The other artists he has collaborated with are Sway (UK), Naeto C (Nigeria), Ice Prince (Nigeria), 2face (Nigeria), Wahu (Kenya), Nameless (Kenya), Double HP (South Africa), Lira (South Africa), Buffalo Souljah (Zimbabwe), Gal Level (Namibia), Scar (Botswana), Petersen (Zambia), Kmillian (Zambia), Vee (Botswana), Stagga (Botswana), Hamoba (Zambia), Slap Dee (Zambia), DA Les and Ishmael (South Africa) Orezi (Nigeria) and Vanessa Mdee (Tanzania).
Bebe Cool has equally an impressive resume. Born Moses Ssali, Bebe Cool’s music career was crafted in Nairobi, Kenya, and fostered through a decade of hit-making excellence in Kampala, Uganda. It was that blend of regional exposure and domestic superiority that created the springboard for him to captivate an entire continent. Nearly two decades since Mambo Mingi introduced him to East Africa, the entire globe now pays attention.
From Awete to Maisha to Born in Africa to Love You Every day, it matters little the language of his delivery. Luganda, English or Swahili, the consistent thread to his chart-busting music is the unmatched quality—as well as the dynamism.
That Bebe Cool still stands out after more than a decade in the industry is testament to both his willingness, and skill, to adapt. Bebe may remain inseparable from his reggae roots, but it says a lot about his dynamism when his dancehall tunes have had club-goers going wild, and here one remembers tracks like Fire Anthem and Kube (as part of the East African Bashment Crew) or the Cease & Sekkle collabo with Rema. Not that his musical repertoire is limited to the dancehall genre. Bebe is equally at home when he delivers the Baxxragga blockbuster Kabulengane or the reggae/dancehall/Afro-pop masterpiece Mbozi za Malwa, which was the product of a collaboration with award-winning Kenyan band Sauti Sol.
Bebe Cool has collected dozens of awards, nominations and ambassadorial roles which include Channel O Music Video Awards, multiple Pearl of Africa Music (PAM) and HiPipo Awards, as well as Kora, AFRIMA, BET and MAMA award nominations.
It is a mark of the respect he enjoys that Bebe Cool was named by Nelson Mandela as a 46664 African ambassador, as part of a campaign to raise awareness against HIV and Aids. He performed at the Nelson Mandela 46664 concert at Hyde Park, London. In 2014 his Born in Africa song was voted among Africa’s greatest songs of all time.