The emergence of social media has helped the music industry significantly. Platforms like TikTok have become prominent places for artists and labels to promote music and cause it to reach various parts of the world.
There are so many songs that have become major hits worldwide after first going viral on TikTok. Lil Nas X’s solo released song “Old Town Road” first went viral on the platform before dominating the charts and breaking the record for the most weeks spent at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 songs charts (19 weeks).
The same has been the case for African songs, as artists from all over the continent are currently using social media platforms, especially TikTok, to promote their music. Now check out our list of the year’s top 20 songs that went viral on TikTok.
Mzansi Disc Jockey and producer gained international recognition following the remix release for the song “It Ain’t Me”, originally done by Kygo and Selena Gomez. Abux teamed up with Soulking to make it happen and featured Innocent Boetie on the song. It quickly became a viral hit on TikTok and spawned a viral dance trend. Countries across the African continent jumped on the trend and shared videos of it across the net.
S.A. Hip Hop star Big Zulu owned the year with his November 2020 release “Mali Eningi”. The song features contributions from Intaba Yase Dubai and Riky Rick. Fans of S.A. Hip Hop called the song a big win for the genre. The song did become a success on the charts and the radio. It also went viral on social media. Fans have since called it one of the biggest songs of 2020 and 2021. In addition, it is featured on Big Zulu’s chart-topping and critically acclaimed album “Ichwane Lenyoka”.
This holiday season, it is hard not to hear this viral hit song playing every 10 seconds across the airwaves and on social media. The song “Ameno Amapiano (Remix)” by Goya Menor and featuring Nektunez was only released a few weeks back and has already become one of the year’s biggest tunes. This is as a result of its catchy Piano beat and viral lyrics. It is currently dominating countries, including Nigeria, Ghana, and various parts of Africa.
The year’s biggest and most dominant genre remains Amapiano. The genre has claimed the airwaves and social media this year with various viral hits, including “66”. The song was created by Piano D.J.s and producers Felo Le Tee and Myztro. It fast became a viral jam after several S.A. celebs, including Riky Rick, Uncle Waffles, and more, shared videos dancing to it on social media.
Mzansi knew Afro House star Zakes Bantwini had come back with a significant hit song the minute he played it Live during his Kunye set. The song immediately sent chills down his audience’s spine. It also became a trending topic on social media. Since it was released, the song has gone viral on TikTok and topped various charts, including Apple Music and the S.A. Radio charts (for ten consecutive weeks) “Osama” features contributions from Kasango.
About a month ago, S.A. Piano hitmaker, Ch’cco joined forces with the talented duo Mellow & Sleazy to drop the song “Nkao Tempela”. Following its release, the feedback for the song was impressive, and it pushed it to make rounds on social media. The song also went viral on TikTok, with fans sharing dance videos and more on the platform. One month in, it is still one of the most played and talked about songs in the country.
There is no denying that the Piano duo MFR Souls owned the year in the best way they know-how. The talented team dropped the chart-topping hit song “Amanikiniki”, and its reception was on a whole other level. The song features contributions from the Piano duo, Major League DJz, Kamo Mphela, and Bontle Smith. It also dominated social media, TikTok especially, and was embraced by fans from across Africa and the world.
There is no denying that the late Mzansi DJ and producer, Mpura left behind a fantastic legacy while he was alive. He attained praise with the release is his hit song “Umsebenzi Wethu”, a collaboration with fellow Piano stars Busta 929. The song also features Reece Madlisa, Lady Du, Mr JazziQ, and Zuma. It gained them praise, with Riky Rick calling them the champions of December. The song also dominated social media this year.
About a year ago, John Vuli Gate was brought to life on social media, and Mzansi became obsessed with it. The song, led by Mapara A Jazz and featuring contributions from Ntosh Gazi and Colano, was one of January’s first major hits. It dominated social media and also spawned viral dances on TikTok. “John Vuli Gate” also helped push all three hitmakers, Mapara A Jazz, Ntosh Gazi, and Colano, into the spotlight.
When Amapiano’s Scorpion Kings, Kabza De Small, and DJ Maphorisa announced that they had forthcoming collaborations with SAMA Award-winning singer and songwriter Ami Faku, there was no doubt that they would dominate the airwaves with them. “Asibe Happy”, featuring vocals from Faku, was released a few weeks after “Abalele”, and the song gained massive acclaim. It has also been called one of the best songs of 2021.
This year, “Sisonke” was released into the airwaves in the last week of September, and Mzansi has not been the same ever since. Commissioned by hitmakers, Thozi, Khanyisa, Sphokuhle, and P.D. Jokes, the song was well received by the fans. It has also shined a spotlight on Thozi, Khanyisa, and co. It has also gained major love across social media, TikTok especially. Many have called the song one of the best songs of the year.
When S.A. Hip Hop star Cassper Nyovest announced that he was coming with new Piano jams, we knew we were in for a great time. He teamed up with Abidoza and Boohle to drop the song “Siyathandana” 5 months ago. The song immediately became a viral hit, with many praising Boohle’s vocals on it. It is also featured on Cassper’s chart-topping Amapiano album “Sweet & Short 2.0”. “Siyathanda” is undoubtedly the best and most successful song on the album.
This list would not be complete without this song on it. Amapiano hitmakers DJ Maphorisa and Tyler ICU owned the airwaves following the release of the song hit song “Banyana”. The song, which features contributions from famous singer Sir Trill, and fellow hitmakers, Daliwonga and Kabza De Small, is undeniably one of the most talked-about hit songs. It quickly took up space on social media and owned the airwaves in the best ways. It is undoubtedly one of the year’s most viral hits.
DJ Tarico gained good love following the release of his hit song “Yaba Buluku”. However, it was a different story after an official remix was released for the song. The remix features joint contributions from Nigerian Grammy winner Burna Boy and contributions from Preck and Nelson Taivane. The remix took over social media and gained Tarico, Burna Boy, and their fellow contributors praise across various African countries, including Nigeria, and more.
Following the death of Mzansi Disc Jockey and producer, Mpura, his friend and Collaborator, Busta 929, announced the coming release is a tribute project in his honour. He also announced the project’s title to be “Umsebenzi Wethu”. Taken from the project, the song “Ngixolele” has gained love from fans. It features vocal contributions from singer and songwriter, Boohle. Following its recent success, the song has been called one of the best songs on the E.P.
This hit song, “Izolo”, has gained Mzansi Disc Jockey and producer DJ Maphorisa much love and acclaim. Before the song’s release, Phori took to social to state that he’s the only one in the S.A. music industry who can feature himself. He also claimed to be one of the best rappers in the country. Mzansi confirmed Phori’s claims following the release of “Izolo”. It immediately became a viral hit on TikTok, and Madumane’s rap skills became a major topic.
Blaqnick and MasterBlaq have risen to be one of the most talked-about and sort-after hitmakers in the S.A. music industry. The two have contributed to some of the biggest hits released into the airwaves this year. With M.J, they dropped the “Ses’fikile EP”. Blaqnick and MasterBlaQ have also dropped the viral hit song “The Whistling Man” featuring Uncle Jo. The song has gained praise from across the country.
Months ago, Amapiano registered a stunning viral jam tagged “Woza”. The hit song was commissioned by the Scorpion Kings, Kabza De Small, and DJ Maphorisa, with joint contributions from the new queen of Amapiano, Lady Du. It also features the vocal contributions of singer and songwriter, Boohle. The song became a massive success after it went viral on TikTok and took over various other social media platforms. In addition, CNN featured one of its viral dance videos.
Like everyone else, Mzansi star DBN Gogo also had a viral hit song this year. Gogo has previously dominated the airwaves with “Dakiwe”, collaborating with fellow female Piano Disc Jockey, Lady Du. She also teamed up with Blaqnick and MasterBlaq to drop “Khuza Gogo”. The song, which features contributions from the late Mpura, Ama Avenger, and M.J., became a viral hit, dominating social media and gaining praise from the fans.
Very talented Amapiano duo Mellow & Sleazy have emerged as one of the year’s most consistent duos. They have dished lead and collaborative jams. The talented hitmakers gained major acclaim following their hit song “Possessed Whistle” release. The song features contributions from Felo Le Tee. The fans also received it well, and it gained acclaim after it went viral on social media.