One Africa Music Fest continued its worldwide tour with a sellout at SSE Arena in Wembley, London, the festival’s first date of 2017. The showcase for Afrobeat was hosted by Nigerian actor and musician Banky W, who immediately gave a high energy performance. Cassper Nyovest was the first top-tier musician to appear on the show, representing Johannesburg hip hop. Some of his songs performed at the festival include “Mama I Made It”, “Dock Shebeleza” and “Tito Mboweni”. He was immediately followed up by Ghanaian rapper Sarkodie, who performed “Pon di ting”, “Azonto” and “Painkiller”, a collaboration with Nigerian musician Runtown.
Later in the night, M.I. Abaga from Nigeria came on to perform “Action Film” and “Anoti” among other entries in his large catalogue. He also brought on guests Koker and Yung L during his set. Congolese drummer Awilo Longomba then came on with one of the more celebrated sets of the night, performing “Karolina”, “Gate le coin”, “Bundelele” and “Coupe Bibamba”. That was then followed up by one of the more disappointing sets of the night by Nigerian hip-hop artist 9ice, who was unable to use his own vocals for an undisclosed reason and had to bring on German remixer Niki Tall, whose accent didn’t fit the music. Later in the show, American-born Nigerian pop artist Davido went through several songs in rapid succession.
While the musical performances were mostly praised, there was criticism over the concert beginning later than scheduled, which caused several sets to be rushed through. By the time Nigerian performers Flavour and P-Square finished their set, power to SSE Arena was cut off by authorities, causing Jidenna, an American R&B performer, to be unable to perform as the closing act for the night. Embarassingly, he had to take to Twitter to apologize to his fans, although he was hesitant to place blame on the organizers of the festival.
— Jidenna (@Jidenna) May 14, 2017