&friends Releases Sophomore Single “Ode Ireti” ft. eL-Jay & Oluwadamvic Via Hidden Hands

Meaning  “Hunters of Hope” in West African native language Yoruba, the burgeoning project’s sophomore single follows the striking success of the projects debut release last month.

Following the striking success of the project’s inaugural single, Sean Thomas AKA &friends celebrates the release of his sophomore single “Ode Ireti” featuring eL Jay & Oluwadamvic.  The second installment to the burgeoning project’s catalogue is slated for release on August 19th, 2022 via Sean Thomas’ own Hidden Hands imprint.

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This original release is a prime example of the storytelling Thomas’ intends on delivering through &friends’ releases. Translated to “Hunters of Hope”, “Ode Ireti” hails from the West African native language Yoruba.

Across the duration of the track, sultry chords and melody overlay a dynamic percussive production. Driving vocals and enchanting chants weave across the afro-house foundation, the new track introduces a new collaborator also from Nigeria – hailing from a background in choir and gospel, eL Jay delivers a poignant vocal message of ancestry, culture and perseverance that truly sees the vision of the track embodying “Hunters of Hope” through to fruition. 

eL Jay’s passion for West African culture, his tribal influences and breadth of inspiration across hip hop, afrobeats and hallmarks of popular culture poise him as another global voice Sean Thomas’ aims to amplify through involvement in the releases of &friends.

Following up the original release, a coupling of remixes of “Ode Ireti” is on the horizon for release in September from talented producers in authentic afro-house.  With remix duties being served by Zimbabwean producer Nitefreak, as well as the Dutch music aficionado, deroos, the two producers are set to provide their unique takes on the original next month.

This record is a story of what happens when we listen to our hearts versus what others tell us. It is a message that giving up is never an option no matter how hard it gets; we are all here to fulfill a destiny,” shares &friends.

“Ode Ireti” is the follow up to &friends debut single “Gbagbe e” The inaugural release saw strong early support from tastemakers across music media including Wonderland MagazineEARMILKMagnetic Magazine, Electronic Groove and more. The first release also received a prime time play and shout out by Pete Tong on BBC Radio 1, affirming “Gbagbe e” and &friends strong first splash right out of the gate. The first single of this brand new project, in its first three weeks, has already amassed over 85,000 streams on Spotify and has been warmly received by top names in the space such as Black Coffee, Nic Fanciulli, John Digweed, XINOBI and more.

&friends is the musical concept and brainchild of New York-based Sean Thomas. Drawing the breadth of his inspiration for these musical works from the African Diaspora, Thomas had a vision to create a project embodying tradition, culture, and community culminating in the coining of &friends.

Through a journey fueled by passion, determination, and drive, Sean Thomas set out to foster meaningful connections – first with his best friend and music producer, Michael Scheinker, as well as with creators all over the continent of Africa. Through a thoughtfully produced and artfully composed compilation of works, &friends is set to make an impact on the music community through a holistic, multifaceted approach; and further the mission that sound unites us all from every corner of the globe.

Exacting on the project’s mission to give back to and amplify the voices of a global community, 10% of proceeds from streaming royalties accumulated across &friends releases will be donated to Uganda-based charitable foundation Masaka Kids Africana. Empowering local cultures and giving back to the homes of the voices his music celebrates, &friends intention goes beyond the music it releases.

To find out more about &friends, go to: 

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