GRAMMY-nominated global artist Matt B has released a new music video for single “OGALA TRAVELER,” out now via Vitae Records. The percussive-led down-tempo track tells the story of a boy named Ogala, meaning “leader” in Igbo, who seeks exciting journeys to find a good life. The visual, directed by Matt’s wife, manager, and producer Angela Benson, shows the beautiful sights of Uganda and Namibia as he comes to terms with his own transformative journey.
“After all my experiences in Africa, I truly consider myself to be an Ogala Traveler,” explains Matt. “Ogala is a name of Nigerian origin (but also common in Uganda, Kenya, and Gabon) and it means ‘a leader’ or ‘a king that will change our lives and carry all burdens.’ The record speaks about someone who is determined to journey far and wide in search of a good, prosperous life for himself and his family. It’s a song of inspiration, and a reminder for people to never stop pushing for your goals and dreams despite all challenges. This song is very special to me and one that really speaks to my soul. My work and drive stems from my family and the legacy I will one day leave for them, it’s why I work so hard as an artist.”
The release is the latest from Matt’s critically acclaimed Afrobeats album ALKEBULAN (pronounced al-kee-boulan). A powerful display of Matt’s artistry as he aims to build a bridge of unity between his Motherland and America, ALKEBULAN debuted on six Billboard charts including Top New Artist Albums, Top Albums, Top Current Album Sales, and on Digital Albums. Meaning “Mother of Mankind,” the album offers a culturally rich listening experience infused with African elements such as conga shakers, djembe and bougarabou drums, and call-and-response singing, elevating the soundscape he has so brilliantly captured with his various Afro-inspired releases. Recognized for his artistry and cultural contributions, Matt was recently named Artist of the Year by The Los Angeles Tribune in addition to earning a Hollywood Music In Media nomination for Best Music Video (Independent) with his track “GUNJALE” featuring Ugaboys.
Matt initially began bringing ALKEBULAN to life at the 65th annual GRAMMY Awards — for which his hit “GIMME LOVE” featuring Eddy Kenzo was nominated for Best Global Music Performance — where he and Angela channeled the energy and presence of their ancestors who once reigned as kings and queens of Africa aiming to share its importance and beauty with the new generation. The power couple garnered praise for their iconic royal looks from the likes of Vogue, Washington Post, Entertainment Tonight, iHeart, and Esquire among others. While ALKEBULAN first started as a way for Matt to search for his identity and come to terms with his purpose as both a person and artist, the album ultimately reignited the spark needed to fuel his creativity unlike ever before as he rediscovered his purpose and love for music.
Known for his romantically-driven R&B music, Matt B has cemented himself as a bona fide talent and a force to be reckoned with. The Chicago native and Los Angeles-based songsmith has built a worldwide fanbase with his chart-topping singles and albums including his 2014 international debut, Love & War, and sophomore album, DIVE. Both releases went #1 on the iTunes R&B Charts and were later followed by his 2018 EP, RISE, produced by GRAMMY-Award Winner Bryan-Michael Cox (Mariah Carey, Usher, Mary J. Blige). In 2021, he released his debut US album, EDEN, which featured production from Cox as well as Tricky Stewart (Beyoncé, Britney Spears, Rihanna) and landed in the Top 40 on Billboard’s R&B Albums, Digital Albums, Heatseekers, and R&B/Hip-Hop Albums Charts. Since then, Matt B has released a string of eclectic singles including “Gimme Love” and garnered media support from the likes of GRAMMY.com, SPIN, 1883 Magazine, Rolling Out, Singersroom, and more.