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  • Akeeile Harris

Billboard's Fresh Picks for December Spotlight Masicka, Popcaan, Lila Ike, & Nailah Blackman

Masicka's 'Wow' with Spice was praised for bold chemistry, Popcaan's 'Best Mood,' Lila Ike, and Bunji Garlin earned recognition

Masicka, received recognition for his masterful album. (Photo: Nicholas Gregg)

The prestigious magazine Billboard consistently features a monthly roundup of exceptional singles from the worlds of dancehall reggae and other Caribbean musical genres, underscoring its evolution into an integral component of the global musical narrative.

Within the mentions of prominent events such as the renowned Sting and Hot 97 Winter Jam, where artists like Shenseea, Bunji Garlin, and Teejay participated, Billboard chose the last month of 2024, December, to showcase some intriguing names that transitioned from studios to jukeboxes.

Making the prestigious list was Masicka's masterpiece album 'Generation of Kings,' released on December 1, with the track 'Wow,' featuring dancehall queen Spice. Billboard's editors lauded the collaboration, "Masicka teams up with dancehall queen Spice for a no-holds-barred ode to tantalizing sexual chemistry. In a typical fashion, Spice is just as brash and forward as Masicka with her demands for sexual gratification, and the pair’s rhythmic flows recall dancehall’s influence on hip-hop".

Dancehall superstar Popcaan also earned mention for two singles from his surprising mixtape 'Best Mood,' released on Christmas day. Billboard spotlighted the project's closing single 'Life Is Real,' revealing Popcan's suspicion of those around him, and the single 'Always Welcomed,' targeting the female audience, also secured a spot on their playlist.

American rap star Nicki Minaj, whose 'Pink Friday 2' album graced the Billboard Top 200 chart, made the list with her collaboration with dancehall stars Skeng and Skillibeng in "Forward From Trini."

Reggae luminary Lila Ike, who released "Good & Great" in December—a fusion of reggae and gospel—rightfully found her place on the prestigious list.

Representing the Soca genre were noteworthy singles, including the rising soca princess Nailah Blackman's impressive vocal display in 'Born To Fly,' featuring Pumpa, as she readies for the carnival season. Additionally, soca star Bunj Garlin secured a mention with his track 'Forward.'


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