How South Africa’s Jerusalema became a pan-African hit, then a global dance favorite

How South Africa’s Jerusalema became a pan-African hit, then a global dance favorite

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Nomcebo and Master KG in the official music video for global hit, Jerusalema

So many people have been curious about the South African song, Jerusalema, that this month it became the most Shazamed song in the world. Recorded by producer Master KG and featuring vocals by Nomcebo, this latest achievement is a continuation of the acclaim that the track has garnered since it was released in December 2019.

Over the festive season it played on South African radio stations and quickly took off as a local hit. But then in February, Fenomenos do Semba, an Angolan dance studio posted a video of members line dancing to the track while carrying their plates of food and eating gave the song a whole new lease of life as a pan-African African pop anthem.

The Angolan clip kicked off the #JerusalemaDanceChallenge across the continent and soon beyond from nuns and monks in France, a bridal party in Zimbabwe, a flash mob in Germany, as well as countless tutorials on YouTube and TikTok.

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