He dominated the local music scene with his smash hit single Doc Shebeleza last year, his debut album Tsholofelo and the very public feud he had with fellow rapper AKA. This year, the new prince of South African hip-hop is planning to take things to an even higher level. El sat down with the rapper and discussed his hit record, his countless awards and the state of the local hip-hop industry as a whole.
You’ve made quite a name for yourself this year. What is it about you that South Africans are so drawn to?
I think that I’m relatable. I haven’t changed, I’m just a guy from Mafikeng who makes money from making great music! I have stayed true to myself and that’s what the fans like.
Doc Shebeleza became a huge hit. What inspired the song?
Doc Shebeleza is a legendary artist I grew up listening to, I always looked up to him. I was in studio one day and I was fooling around with lyrics, his name fit the beat perfectly. After recording it I called him and he gave me his blessing. The response has been amazing.
You’ve won countless awards this year. What is your take on winning awards vs making good music?
They fit hand in hand. The award is recognition for the great music we make as artists. Hopefully this year I can add some South African Music Awards to my collection.
Which of the awards you have won means the most to you?
They all mean a lot me. I’ve been in the music industry for 10 years so it feels good to get acknowledged for my contribution to the industry. My favourite award to date has to be Most Gifted Video of the Year that I received for Doc Shebeleza because this means my video was THE video of 2014.
How would you describe your sound?
It’s Matswako and I am very proud of that.
Tsholofelo is your debut album. What was the hardest part of recording this record?
It wasn’t hard to record, there were some challenges putting my emotions into words. The hardest part about this album was deciding which tracks make the cut as it is my debut album and I want the fans to receive one great album and make a name for myself.
How would you describe the state of the South African hip-hop industry at the moment?
It’s amazing. It’s taken a long time to get to where we are today and it’s great to see everyone supporting and pushing each other. That’s what it’s all about.
Are there any international musos who inspire you?
Kanye West is definitely a rapper I look up to.
2014 has clearly been good to you, what are your 2015 plans?
I want my debut album to go platinum, more music and I know it might sound impossible, but I would like for it to be an even better year than 2014 has been.
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