A Brief Overview of Traditional African Dance Songs

Africa is a continent rich in culture. The two major components of African culture are dance and music. Traditional African songs have a long history that has been transferred from one generation to another. The kind of songs created in Africa is such that have underlying rhetorical meanings, even the dance songs.

Music and Dance in Africa

Music and dance in Africa are a form of storytelling. African society never lived separately from their music, as it is equally as important as other cultural experiences. Music is inseparable from Africa. It is an existent culture that is being carried around for as long as the people live. Meanwhile, dance songs in Africa are often colorful and exciting.

It is good to know that many hands are working to immortalize traditional songs by recording more of the various traditional genres. African songs are respected as distinct styles of putting music out there because the continent holds the most diverse music styles, ranging from the reverberation of rumba songs to the sound of benga guitars in East Africa; nightlife and Afrobeats in Nigeria, West Africa; mbaqanga and kwaito in South Africa; mbalax in Dakar; makossa in Cameroon.

The foundation of African dance songs was laid by music giants, such as Fela Kuti (father of Afrobeats), Miriam Makeba, and Hugh Masekela. The same foundation is continuously worked on by confident songsters who are not afraid of creating a fusion of African rhythms with contemporary styles.

The most prominent African-contemporary rhythm that came out of Africa is Afrobeat, which is a combination of West Africa musical styles like high life and Fuji with jazz and American funk. Many African artists have used this African music genre to create songs that made Africa and the whole world dance. Hard-hitting grooves, high energy dances, and catchy dance anthems have been created from beats and rhythms that evolved from traditional African beats.

Africa Dance Songs that Made the Whole World Dance

Cutting across Africa, here is a list of recent African songs that made Africa and the whole world dance.

Do Dara

The Senegalese music queen, Viviane Chidid who is fondly called the Queen of mbalax released a single inspired by Afrobeat. “Do Dara” got the whole world dancing and enjoying the beauty of African dance songs once again.


“Dumebi” is a dance hit from Rema, the 19-year-old Mavin Records’ golden child. Dumebi has a strong afrobeat that got everyone moving to the rhythm. The Nigerian singer and rapper gave the world a standout hard-hitting dancing song on this track.

Killin Dem

“Killin Dem” is one of the hardcore dance songs on Burna Boy’s Grammy-nominated album, “African Giant.” Burna Boy is an Afro-fusion artist with range and high sonic inspiration. He is one of the Nigerian artists that can deliver on any beat. This song that he did with Zlatan, another Nigerian artist, became an anthem and a street dance culture.

John Cena

John Cena by Sho Madjozi was a mega bomb. The South African-Sweedish singer got the inspiration from watching the professional wrestler while growing up.