Afropean Anthems

90’s UK Soul Playlist for International Womens Day 2021

This post started with me wanting to play my daughters some food for thought on International Women’s day… and has evolved into a homage to prominent female voices of the 90s UK soul scene.

Mama Said (Kenny Dope Remix) – Carleen Anderson
If you’ve read any of my other posts you will know that I am a Carleen Anderson fan-boy. This tune embodies the song writing skills that brought Carleen to the forefront of the UK 90’s soul scene (and also to the forefront of almost every list I ever make on this genre).


Living in the Light (Brixton Bass Remix) – Caron Wheeler
Perhaps the biggest commercial hit out of all the tunes in this shortlist. Musically it’s a border-line pop tune with a very catchy chorus, and yet, hidden away in the lyrics is a message about self-love and self-preservation written just for the African Diaspora.
Caron was ahead of her time.

Inside Out – Shara Nelson
Everyone knows Shara from that Massive Attack tune, but how many remember this?

I Wrote You a Song – Misty Oldland
An absolute gem, from an artist who sang about “Girl Power” years before Mel B and co.

Prayer For Unity – D-Influence
Title track from D-Influence’s second album. Alongside the messaging in the title and Sarah Webb’s lyrics, this song also channels Fela’s Shuffering & Shmiling, and features poetry from Linton Kwesi Johnson.
Playing this to my daughters opened the doors to multiple, very interesting conversations.


Who is missing from my list? Let me know in the comments.

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