Last month, Nigerian pop futurist Burna Boy released the excellent album African Giant. It featured collaborations from around the global black-music spectrum, and one of those artists was Jorja Smith, the London R&B singer and past Drake collaborator. That pairing made sense, and today, they’re running it back. Jorja Smith’s new single is a percolating, club-ready summertime pop song called “Be Honest,” and Burna Boy shows up to add a verse on it.
“Be Honest” has production from London’s Candenza and Miami’s Izybeats, and it’s one of those genre-free floaters that draws on things like dancehall and Afrobeats without committing to any of them. Smith, singing about crushes and pernicious feelings, sounds effortless. So does Burna Boy, whose guest verse exists on that porous border between singing and rapping.
Director Amber Grace Johnson’s video is good pop filmmaking, with Smith and her friends moving through London on the sorts of hot days that require them to wear swimsuits and baby oil. Burna Boy never shows up onscreen with Smith, but there’s a cool match cut between their scenes. Check it out below.
“Be Honest” is out now on the streaming services.