Chanda Mbao Takes Zambian Hip-Hop to Nigeria


Chanda Mbao seems to have turned himself into quite the ambassador for Zambian Hip-Hop. From a home base of Lusaka, we’ve seen him score international collaborations with artists from South Africa, Mozambique and Malawi to name the ones we know of. Further to the notable collaborations, Chanda Mbao also scored radio number ones in South Africa on two radio stations last year. Now, he brings us his latest mega collaboration with Nigerian Afropop star, Skales. Alongside Zambian music heavyweight and multi-talented act Jay Rox and young R&B crooner ‘Scott,’ Chanda Mbao serves up the final chapter in his ‘Wave’ trilogy, giving the song a great grand finale.

When we spoke with Chanda Mbao about how the collaboration came about, he recounted the collaborative process and said it occurred during Skales’s visit to Zambia in September to support Zambian Hip-Hop giant Chef 187’s ‘Bon Appetit’ album launch. During the Chivas-orchestrated Afroblend Nights events, Skales bumped into Chanda Mbao and Scott performing the original version of ‘Wave,’ and was gracious enough to compliment the two on the song, even offering to put a verse on a remix to the song.

Never one to waste a collaborative opportunity, Chanda Mbao got the record completed the next day and even organized a video shoot for the song before Skales’s departure from Zambia. “One of the things I’m proud about with ‘Wave’ is that it’s really shown, one, how a modern Hip-Hop/Trap song can have success in the region and, two, how long of a lifespan a song can have when it resonates.” Chanda Mbao said.

The original song ‘Wave’ was initially released in 2017 as a celebratory record by Chanda Mbao and young R&B sensation Scott. It dropped the day after the two won their first Zambian music award (as voted by viewers and fans) for their collaboration ‘Selfish,’ at the CBC TV awards for Best Hip-Hop Video. After releasing a video to the song, it charted on Trace Urban and Trace Africa, ultimately leading the song to regional fame, allowing Chanda to orchestrate ‘The Bigger Wave’ which featured big leaguers Da L.E.S (South Africa) and Laylizzy (Mozambique) accompanied by crisp visuals shot in Johannesburg, South Africa. Chanda Mbao noted that ‘The Final Wave’ music video would be released in coming weeks.

One thing is certain, Chanda Mbao has shown a great work ethic and certainly continues to represent Zambian Hip-Hop well to the continent and to the world!

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