Pappzd recently caught up with Atumpan, the guy behind the hit single The Thing, which had many of us singing along to the Afrobeats song for the most part of last year. Some of you may or may not know the meaning behind it but it’s more than likely you’ll recognise the hit as soon as it comes on.

Introduced to music by his stepmother through the church junior choir, music had always been a big influence on Atumpan since his childhood.

I had keyboard lessons at church so music has always been with me.

My name Atumpan means ‘the talking drum’… and as my name would suggest, every song has a message.

Atumpan, who has been signed to Ministry of Sound, shared the somewhat surprising story as to what ‘the thing’ was and how the hit single came to be.

Once a teacher in Ghana, Atumpan asked his student who was not paying attention, “You don’t know the thing, I’m teaching you the thing, and you are playing with the thing”. And from that The Thing was born.

Amazing how things work out.


His latest single Akonoba – which means “sweet child” may have a different meaning behind it but it certainly has the signature sound of Atumpan’s fusion mixed sound of Afrobeats.

I’m narrating a story; it’s about a very beautiful girl… She has a big back, a big front, I just love this lady so much that I can’t wait to have a sweet child with her.

Atumpan performed at DJ Abrantee’s Afrobeats at Somerset House concert and at the HipLife and Afrobeats Festival at Indigo2 last year and talking about the growth of Afrobeats, he said:

I was just in Ghana doing my thing to be honest. I never expected it to be as big as it is now. But I am very confident that we are going worldwide.

This is the new thing now.

Whilst in London doing some promo for his newest single Akonoba, he revealed to us that his favourite song at the moment is Antenna by UK Afrobeats artist and fellow Ghanaian Fuse ODG.

He has since filmed a new video for the hit track The Thing as well as hooking up with some of the UK Afrobeats artists such as Mista Silva and Skobs.

He also told us to expect future projects from him and collaborations with different artists and even hinted that he may be a regular fixture in the UK (now that he is signed to a label here).

When asked if he had any advice for any upcoming artists, Atumpan replied:

Just be yourself, be original and true to oneself!

He left us with his opinion that Afrobeats was not solely about music but rather a lifestyle, it is a revolution and is here to stay!

I think Afrobeats will be the next big thing to happen in the world, even with big artists like Jay-Z coming to find us to collaborate with us. Right now we are chasing them but it will change.

With rappers like Rick Ross and Akon featuring on songs with African artists, who knows maybe Afrobeats can and will be the next big thing in music?

Atumpan’s latest song Akonoba is currently out on sale.