The digital distribution company EMPIRE has been the leading force in distribution and publishing for a while now and has further cemented its feet with its foray into the African afrobeats sphere. Just one year after they launched their record label arm, the company has had numerous successes with their roster consisting of top charters like Fireboy DML, Kizz Daniel, KiDi, Black Sherif, and more.
Now they recently released their debut compilation album which was crafted during the writing camp at EMPIRE’s headquarters in San Francisco directly following their first showcase “The New Africa” during the second night of SXSW. One of the singles on the project is “Umbrella” from veteran Nigerian singer/songwriter Wande Coal, who shines bright with his distinct R&B/soul-infused vocals that sets him apart from his peers. Co-written by Grammy-nominated producer Sak Pase, multi-platinum singer/songwriter Sean Kingston, and Wande Coal himself. The mid-tempo jam is a celebration of true love and how it makes one feel inside, Wande says. Over the smooth pads, soft but gripping drum grooves, and warm textures, Wande pours his feelings on wax while detailing the positive attributes of his woman. In his usual style, Wande fuses pidgin English with English underpinned by his commanding melodic runs that show deep sincerity.
In the video directed by Austin McCracken, Wande is first seen playing the piano and singing at a wedding. After the couple marries, Wande shows his emotion by dancing in the rain and singing the song’s chorus, “I’m in the rain like umbrella.” The visual cuts back to the wedding reception and shows guests dancing and enjoying the festivities.
The single comes as the first visual offering and second single from EMPIRE’s new compilation album Where We Come From (VOL. 1). Artists set to be spotlighted on the upcoming project include Fireboy DML, Olamide, BNXN fka BUJU, Black Sherif, Kizz Daniel, L.A.X, and more.
Stream + download it here.