The rise of Sampa the Great has been spectacular to watch, having accumulated over 33 million streams collectively since her 2015 breakout, The Great Mixtape. Her second mixtape Birds And The BEE9 won the Australian Music Prize as Best Album Of 2017. Sampa capped off 2018 with her single “Energy”, which premiered via Zane Lowe’s show on Apple Music’s Beats 1, with the accompanying video hitting around 1.2M YouTube views to date.
Entertaining audiences across the globe, Sampa has won a wave of adoring fans with her live shows, performing across the country’s most iconic festivals, including Laneway Festival, Splendour in the Grass, Golden Plains, Sugar Mountain, Womadelaide, Vivid Live & more. Sampa recently returned home, performing her first African shows in Swaziland, Zambia and Johannesburg, before heading to Hobart this June for the iconic Dark Mofo festival and world-renowned Glastonbury festival in the UK. Keeping in the company of greatness, she has supported the biggest names in music including Kendrick Lamar, Ms Lauryn Hill, Thundercat, Hiatus Kaiyote, Ibeyi and Little Simz.
Straight off the bat with an all-consuming sound, “Final Form” is a lesson in hip-hop. An ode to her Zambian heritage, Sampa declares her greatness, with a unique sound that has become synonymous with Sampa The Great. Produced by Silentjay and mixed by Jonwayne, the new single sees Sampa take final form with her most impactful release to date.
‘Final Form’, is a triumphant single that sees the MC embrace the struggle of growing as an artist. Having just been named Zane Lowe’s World Record, ‘Final Form’ is Sampa’s first new music for 2019 and sees her fiercely delivered lyrics entangled with a warm, tightly wound beat.
“It’s easy to get caught up in the constant chatter around you about how ‘you are not there yet’, how you ‘might not make it’” Sampa says. “Final Form is about expanding yourself and calling out any negativity towards that growth process. As an artist I now recognise my in-between stage; sometimes it drops and sometimes it rises, but I love that I get to level up each second. I might even final form tomorrow.”
The ‘Final Form’ official video sees Sampa travel back to Zambia to explore the traditions and communities of her roots. Bridging the gap between the traditional worlds of Nyau dancers and modern Zambian youth culture, it was filmed in the run-up to her first ever shows on African soil, including her recent homecoming show in Zambia. “The video was inspired by the belief of having a spiritual exodus back to yourself.” Says Sampa. “We often as black people in the diaspora talk about the physical return to our roots but not so often about the spiritual.
‘Final form’ is meant to start that conversation. It was important for me to do this video in Zambia, the place of my birth and where I’m from, because if I am truly to become the greatest version of myself, I am going to start at the most me I’ve ever been, which is where I started from, where I grew up! I was born and raised between Zambia and Botswana. By a Bemba mother and Tumbuka father and to erase that by calling me anything but Zambian/African, is to erase my history, culture and essence. Everything I was born from.”
Having previously performed worldwide supporting the likes of Kendrick Lamar, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Thundercat, Joey Bada$$, Hiatus Kaiyote, Noname, Ibeyi and Little Simz, in 2019 Sampa is set to play live at Glastonbury, Love Supreme Jazz Festival and with Sons Of Kemet at Somerset House in the UK, before performing alongside Burna Boy in New York’s Prospect Park on 19th July, with additional shows at Dark MOFO (Tasmania – alongside FKA Twigs, Kelsey Lu, Nicholas Jaar), Down The Rabbit Hole (Netherlands) and headlining Hip-Hop Collection (Paris) with more TBA.