How would you like to join your favourite band in London?

Serious! Converse presents: the Get Out Of The Garage Competition, phase two. They’re sending SA’s unsigned band to the legendary 100 Club in London. What’s even better is that your vote could give you and a friend this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to tag along with your band. Isn’t that just awesome?

All you have to do is visit http://on.fb.me/getoutofthegarage, check out the super talented official 10 bands and vote. It’s that simple. The voting started on 18 July and will continue till 02 August 2012. The winners will be announced on the 6th of August 2012. Good luck to you and your favourite band.

Follow the conversation on Twitter @Converse_Africa and with the hashtag #Play100Club.

 – Vusi Khoza

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Get Out Of The Garage: It’s now or never…

You’ve knocked down on record label doors like the wolf huffing at the 3 little pigs’ huts, but no one budges. Neighbours have had enough of your bands’ jamming sessions in garages and back rooms without bearing any results.

Converse believes there’s an audience out there waiting to hear your unique sound, whether you do Kwaito, Hip Hop, Electro, Dance and Punk or Rock music. You could Get Out Of The Garage courtesy of Converse and off to The 100 Club in London, as a band.

All you have to do is upload your best original song and a short biography of your band on the following link: http://on.fb.me/1getout. The judges will then narrow down the entries to SA’s top 10 unsigned bands. Converse will then showcase these acts on Facebook, where South Africans will vote for their favourite band. One lucky fan and a friend will stand a chance to join them in London, VIP style.

So, if you’ve got what it takes to battle it out for this once-in-a-lifetime gig sign up your band and be sure to follow the conversation on Twitter @Converse_Africa and with the #Play100Club hashtag. Entries close 8th of July and winners will be announced on August 6th 2012.  Get Out Of The Garage with Converse

- Vusi Khoza


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Strongbow DJ competition: You should have been there!


You should have been there!

Strongbow definitely knows how to throw parties! On Saturday the 25th of February they rocked the East Rand at Bahama Bar, and on Sunday the 26th of February the Strongbow DJ competition was held at Masakeng in Soweto. Kasi Times attended the Masakeng event to witness DJ Jab Juice and DJ Skillz battle it out to be crowned Strongbow DJ Megastar.  

Sowetans were treated to good music from DJ Rhyno, DJ Ganyani and Zahara, who got the crowd singing along to her ‘moving’ songs. The music catered for different age groups – young adults (over 18), and the older generation (bekuguga othandayo).

Round One

DJ Jab Juice and DJ Skills took to the stage between the acts. First up was DJ Jab Juice, whose impressive mixing skills and good track selection got the crowd dancing. The nervous pint-sized DJ Skills then went behind the decks. His track selection connected with the crowd. He played soulful house, tribal house and everything in between.

DJ Jab Juice and DJ Skills

After the first round, DJ Skills looked like the crowd’s favourite; the fans loved him, especially the ladies. Tholi B, from YFM, was the host and had to make sure that the crowd based their votes on the right reasons, like mixing ability, track selection and the interaction between the DJ and the crowd.

Round Two

The second round then took place and it became quite obvious who was going to walk away with the title. Indeed, DJ Skills was crowned the Strongbow DJ Megastar.

All in all, much respect to Strongbow, YFM and everyone else for this initiative. It was a great platform for DJs to get their names out there, and for the fans to have fun.

 -Vusi Khoza

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The Strongbow DJ Competition is coming to your doorstep


Strongbow is excited about bringing you the hottest parties while  proudly playing a role in unearthing and showcasing SA’s DJ talent.

After a couple of months of DJs battling it out on radio and the listeners voting for their favourite, the stage has been set for the 6 finalists to battle it out head on at one of three Strongbow Do You Know events that will be taking place in Johannesburg, Soweto and Pretoria, for a chance to be crowned the ultimate Strongbow DJ. The ultimate winner is selected by the crowd at each event. The winners walk away with the street cred of having played alongside some of SA’s own DJ heavy weights, as well as R 5000 in cash.

Come witness a star DJ being born in your own “Kasi.”

East Rand  

Date: Saturday, 25th February
Venue: Bahama, 10632 Kwaswane Street, Kwa Thema
Main Act: Fistaz Mixwell
Time: 17:00 to 22:00


Date: Sunday, 26th February 12
Venue: Masakeng 649 Kinini Street, Mofolo Central opposite Mofolo Park
Main Act: Zahara
Time: 17:00 to 22:00

Mamelodi West

Date: Saturday 3rd March
Venue: The Village, 3773 Mamelodi, Sibande Avenue
Main Act: DJ Cleo
Time: 17:00 to 22:00

To join Kasi Times at the party and be in the know with Strongbow, you have to be 18 years or older. Go to www.facebook.com/strongbowsa, like their page and find out how to get a ticket or dial *120* 423# (cost: 20c for 20 seconds) and follow the prompts.


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Open Letter to the Local Music Industry

I’m not in the music industry nor do I know the ins and outs of the game, I am merely a consumer who’s passionate about music. The industry has been a boom in recent years.

Our artists perform on the international stage, they’re getting international accolades and there are even local music channels, shows, festivals, concerts and awards popping up all over the place. And yet, we still see the same company running things in the music video production side and just a few improvements on the production quality.

Firstly, I suggest that musicians and record companies start investing more money in producing music videos. Stop expecting too much for too little. Secondly, give other production companies a chance to showcase their talent instead of using one template for all your music videos. I’m tired of seeing half naked girls next to a swimming pool looking concerned about getting their weaves drenched in the water. It’s not all gloom and doom; there are artists, record companies and production houses that produce world-class music videos and artists who work hard at it. We just need to see more of that.

Take a look at some of the fresh reels I found and consider them for your next project. I’m sure there are young, creative and hungry companies out there waiting for that opportunity like a cobra waiting to strike.

Pilot Films Reel 2011

Mastermax Films Showreel 2011

It’s all for the love of music! – Vusi Khoza

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What do you do for a living?

This can be a daunting question, a question that can determine the prospect of most relationships. If you answered, “I’m a nurse,” you might not make it into my circle of friends. If you answered, “I’m a Radio Content Producer,” you automatically qualify.

It’s a sad reality that in our society job titles have come to define who a person is. Conversation starters are becoming less about the weather or news headlines, but more about our job titles.

I once made small talk with a beautiful lady in a cramped taxi after a few minutes of gathering the confidence to utter my first word.  We talked about her destination and the reckless taxi driver. The moment I asked what she did for a living, everything turned sour. The smile that had brightened the whole taxi was no longer there, I was immediately given the newsreader face.


Puzzled, I asked, “Is it something I said?” She responded, “If I said I was a cleaner in some madam’s house, would it change what you think of me?” She then got off the taxi.

We meet people every day. Whether we talk to them or not, we live with an assumption of who they are – yes, we judge each other!

My plea is this, define others by who they are rather than what they do. Don’t lose touch with who you are because of your fancy or your not-so-fancy job title. You’re not your job!

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Who’s Going to Don the Song Of The Year Title?

It’s that time of the year again: cars are playing the same songs, artists are fighting for the number one spot on music charts, and everyone wants to have fun. For musicians – it’s the moment of truth. Some of them have spent most of the year in studio cooking up songs, hoping that their work will make it to your playlist or music collection for the summer of 2011.

I’m sure you’ve already heard a lot of singles from artist’s compilations; some singles entice you to want to buy the whole album, while others put you off the artist and their music for good!

Around this time last year, artists like DJ Cleo, Kent, Fisherman, Zakes Bantwini, Liquid Deep, Tumelo and Big Nuz, were fighting for our attention. And, Professor deservedly won over our hearts and sold over gold status with his University of Kalawa compilation.

Is it going to be as obvious as last year’s summer on who’s going to claim the most sought-after Song of the Year title for this year’s summer? I think it’s still too early to tell. With the growing trend of using social media networks to market one’s material I think artists have it easier than the previous years, even though having fans showing you love on social networks doesn’t qualify to sales.

I’ve noticed artists such as DJ Sbu, Culoe De Song, Zahara, Big Nuz and some Soul Candi DJ’s using Read the full story

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BIS Where Art Thou?

Seconds, minutes and hours never go by without me thinking about the good times we shared. It feels like yesterday when you and I strolled down the quiet streets of the cyber world. You took me to enchanting places. You opened doors I thought only the rich and famous go through. You held my hand through typos, sad and smiling emoticons, and the never ending pings.

I never thought this day would come. You left without saying goodbye. Even a little purple message that I hate so much would have made a difference. Maybe I’m the one who’s to blame; I should have given you more space to breathe.

BIS where art thou?

I never thought I’d miss you this much. My friends or should I say my new nemesis are making fun of me – we’re Headline News. Try sparing a few seconds of your “busy” time and look at YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and every other gossip mag, maybe you’ll feel my pain. Here’s one heartbreaking comment I came across: “What did Blackberry say to another Blackberry? Nothing”, maybe once you read them you’ll feel sorry for me and come back.

As I write this letter to you, I’m lying flat on my back stranded; my owner has disserted me. Without you I’m just another phone.

Signed, BlackBerry

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It’s pointless killing something you’re trying to become

We all aspire to be a “somebody” – someone great one day. We even have role models and people we imitate everyday. It might be someone you see on TV, read about on magazines or someone close to you like your mom, your doctor or a community leader.

The world has taught us to pursue our dreams. You might want to be a Tenderpreneur, Doctor, Dancer, Engineer, Nurse or the next world-class DJ/Producer, but at the end of the day, you’ll take the necessary steps to become that person.

For example, if you want to be a doctor you’ll get good grades at school, find the right institution to teach you the ins and outs, pay exorbitant fees and stick out the seven years or however long it takes for you to acquire your dream.

Why is it then different with the music industry? There are a lot of people interested in being part of the music industry: artists, bloggers, artist managers, business people, producers and DJs. You’ll come across a lot of so-called upcoming DJs who say they want to be a DJ and yet they’ve never bought a compilation by their favourite DJ/Producer, visited a record bar, legally downloaded music and went to see their role models performing or DJing live. Read the full story

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We’re Becoming a Nation of Party Animals

After a long day or week of hard work, we all deserve to let our hair loose and party with friends. Some start on a Thursday. Others prefer Sunday, while party animals, party from Thursday till Sunday. It’s different with each group of friends and social group.

Most townships and social groups have adopted the trend of partying for the hell of it. We’ve even coined names for some of these “partying days” and “partying occasions.” Thursday is well-known as Phuza Thursday; Saturday, After Tears; and to close off the weekend, the ever so stylish Sunday Sessions.

As if partying from Thursday till Sunday isn’t draining enough, there’s now a new day added to the week – Mogodu Mondays. One now knocks off like on any other day, and instead of heading home for supper, heads to the nearest pub, buys a plate of Mogodu (tripe) and pap, a couple of drinks and parties the night away. One of the most well-known Mogodu joints is at 15 in Alexandra.

I get it. We work hard. There’s so much pressure in the workplace. Our country is facing challenges, and we do need time to forget about it all and cool down. But aren’t we overdoing it? Read the full story

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I’m Not a DJ

Growing up in the streets of Soweto is the best thing that ever happened to me. I believe my township has a lot of opportunities for anyone who wants to make something of their life. As a well-known and trend-setting township, many movements start there. When Soweto sneezes the whole of South Africa catches the bug, and it spreads!

One infectious bug that got me was the deejaying bug. On special Saturdays around 6pm, I’d hear loud House music pumping from a nearby house. I was very curious. I’d sit at the gate and watch some of my older friends preparing themselves to go there. I remember trying to fall asleep in my bedroom and all I could hear was girls screaming, guys whistling and the music becoming louder and louder as the night passed. I thought these people were crazy!

One day, curiosity got the better of me and I sneaked out the house to join in. All I saw was people dancing like they were possessed and one guy was in control… the DJ! He was the focal point of the party, surrounded by large speakers and one girl on each side. All he did was skilfully mix the vinyls, play with volume levels and throw his hands in the air. The guys envied him. The girls wanted a piece of him. And, I wanted to be like him! The likes of DJ Claude, DJ Smash, DJ Mbuso and the BFR crew were in charge of this madness, making each one of us lose our minds. The DJs quickly took over our weekends. It was no longer about Saturday night movies. It was now about “Where is DJ so and so playing tonight?” They were ruling street bashes, 21st birthday parties, weddings, skokvels and the club scene.

In Orlando West and Dube the deejaying bug was infecting a lot of people… fast! DJs and DJ crews were popping everywhere like mushrooms. DJ Smooth, DJ Rhino, DJ Nyt, DJ Sjava, DJ Axe and DJ crews like AfroMassive, Ward 11 were making their mark.

Finally, in 2007 our DJ crew was born: Real Elements Entertainment. We had our stint of “fame.” The gigs were coming, sleepless nights were hectic and fly by night club owners wanted us. But, the money wasn’t coming in! We got robbed, egos grew, friendships broke, and that was the fall of Real Elements Entertainment.

But, I cherish every tear and smile we had and I’m proud to say some of the crew members are still flying the flag high. Big ups DJ Sfiso aka Vox and DJ Summer Daze. I’m behind you boys, besides our differences.

I’ve accepted that only a select few can become DJs. I still have the deejaying bug in my DNA but I’m not a DJ.


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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Social Media in the Music Business

Social networking has taken the world by storm. Gone are the days of only communicating via phone calls, snail mail, telegrams, and emails. With the introduction of Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, BBM and other social networks, the world has become very small.

This new revolutionary way of communicating has brought every kind of social group together in one place, and allows them to interact. One particular social group that is using this network is the music industry and its fans. But like any other form of innovation it has its good, bad and ugly side.

The Good

Unlike paying PR and advertising companies – it’s cheaper for both personal and business use because most of it is free. It has made it easier for any artist to communicate directly with locally and international based fans, especially the ones who attend gigs and buy music. The artist can also track their loyal fan base, leak new releases, drive word of mouth, grow his reputation, push his brand and be easily accessible.

The Bad

Being in the music business means you lack anonymity and social networks take it to another level. You’re putting information about your name, location, age, gender, and other information that you may not want others to know. There’s also a potential of failure of security which will lead to con artists coning your fans, clients and destroying the brand you’ve worked so hard to build.

The Ugly

You can a have a large online following but it doesn’t automatically give you power. You can’t perceive that when you tweet about your upcoming gig, all your followers will attend. Growing your reputation through social media can be tricky because one can have a good reputation online but get no gigs. At the end of the day popularity doesn’t pay the bills.


In closing let me quote the most opinionated, funny, wise and influential being on social networks,well, according to me – Khaya Dlanga: “Don’t confuse the “power” on Twitter with your power in real life.”


By Vusi Khoza

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