Photo: Courtesy of the label
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Jidenna’s remarkable new album ’85 to Africa’ spawned from eviction

‘85 to Africa’, Jidenna’s new album, comes after the release of a trailer and a story of the events leading up to him, and his team, unexpectedly having to move to Africa. He gives listeners insight into what inspired the album in the description below the video.

Photo: Leona Lee for MTV

One fateful morning in the Summer of 2017, Jidenna Mobisson found himself on the wrong end of the barrel of a gun. Armed with weapons and warrants, local police officers flooded the eight-bedroom mansion he and his team had been subletting in the suburbs of Atlanta. Unbeknownst to the world-renowned entertainer, the home’s owner had been grievously delinquent on mortgage payments and had lost the house in a foreclosure auction. As movers dumped his possessions into boxes, the home’s new residents watched from the sidelines; smiling at his misfortune.

Reflecting on the moment that would ultimately set the stage for his remarkable new album, ’85 to Africa’, he says that being unceremoniously booted from his home of three years, “felt like the story of being Black in America. We’re living in this beautiful house by the lake, that cul-de-sac life. Everything is dandy, career’s going well, we’re paying the lease on time, we’re doing everything right and then, out of nowhere at 6 AM, we’re displaced.”

Photo: Courtesy of the label

The eleven-track album is a meaningful tribute to Jidenna’s African heritage as he features Afrobeat artists such as Seun Kuti (son of Fela Kuti) and Mr Eazi. Watching artists embrace their roots and getting creative in various genres is always exciting; Jidenna does just this. The album dabbles in multiple genres like Hip-Hop, Soul, and Afrobeat, with hints of Reggae. A standout track is ‘Worth the Weight’, which features Kuti. Jidenna’s rap skills are impressive. He flows smoothly, as he raps or sings.

While it’s been a quiet few years for the artist, this album proves that he’s back stronger than ever with a whole new vibe and outlook.

Written by Brax Chea

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