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Sabelo Mthembu -The next big thang to hit the music world!

Unfortunately due to the rapid pace life seems to travel at, I never have time to ever listen to music, but when I do get time it has to be have been worth that precious minute. So because I never have time for things like fun or social activities I was invited/forced to a performance by a good friend of mine and the opening act was a young man who for once in my life made me shut up and give him my undivided attention the minute he opened his mouth to sing.

SabeloThere is just something about Sabelo Mthembu’s voice that has me believing and knowing for a fact that this young man will become the next big thing to hit SA’s music scene in 2013.

His voice is husky yet also like silk. Rough and rugged, but also perfectly smooth and pure.  I’m so happy that when he gets nominated at the SAMA’s  or Metro’s this year in the Best New Comer category I will be one of those people who will sit back from my couch and say “Kasi Times told you so”. His music speaks to the heart in that he sings about love, life and brotherly affection in a cheerful yet soulful manner with a sprinkle of quality jazz elements in it. Rare for someone his age. I’m no Simon Cowell or Randal Abrahams but “Songs of Brotherhood” is an album I would buy any day and rock in my car, phone, ipod, stereo or hi-fi.

sabs3

The former SA idols contestant sings about things I can relate to, things I aspire to feel and his beats are simply …beautiful. I love each and every track because I can tell he did not rush himself in creating songs like “Ungumfowetu”, “Phola nhliziyo” or “Ofana nawe” which by the way is the title track to Thami Ngubeni’s SABC talk show “Life with Thami”. I can tell through tracks like “Dreaming in Cairo” that this brother is serious about his talent. I am a sucker for anything related to love so the song “Angiphili mawungekho” is my favourite/national anthem.

 

_JCA1930 copyHe sings both in vernac and English and has a voice so unique you would have to hear it for yourself in order to get what I am going on about. But if I would try to compare his vocal quality to anyone famous I would drop names like Anthony Hamilton, John Legend and Lemar except the difference is that he is unique in that he does it in a proudly Mzansi way. “Songs of brotherhood” drops at the end of February 2013. It’s a must have.

View his profile on www.sabelomthembu.com

Download his single on  http://soundcloud.com/sabelo-siphelele-mthembu/ofana-nawe.

Blessings

Poppy Pops Vilakazi

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Ispan’ -The artist

With so many opportunities available for the youth, some do no budge to the idea of a nine to five job. Most believe that they aren’t cut for the an office, suits and a ties. Hence they use their talents to make ends meet. Ausiki Podi, raised in Motetema in Mpumalanga is one of those who don’t believe in having a boss. She is a self proclaimed artist, she runs Ausiki Art.

The Beginning
Her love for art was unleashed through fashion design while she was still in high school. “I was not a normal dresser, I designed my own school uniform and many people used to tell me that I should consider art,” she said.
This is where her journey begin. Her dream was to be a jewellery designer because she had a passion about bead work and African artwork. She later went to register in Sedibeng college, in Sebokeng, for graphic design. The course came with the whole package of art, from sculpturing, designing painting and everything in art. In 2005, made her first painting and since then she has never looked back.

Wishes vs Passion
“A nine to five job has never been in my plans, the thought of not having money at the end of the month scared me. Apart from the money, Art is about the freedom of expression, working a nine to five would not give me that,” she said.

Highlights
In 2008 she launched Ausiki Art and Design (artists of the north exhibition), 2009 my first magazine interview, 2009 my project with the – Department of Arts and Culture (DAC)on Heritage day in Moroke Village, 2010 lecturing Art and Design at the Dynamic Skills and Development College of South Africa (DSDC), 2010 my interview with Pasella on SABC 2, 2011 Exhibition at the South African State Theatre, 2012 Exhibiting at the Rand Easter Show.

My Love for Art
Art (painting, drawing, graphics, sculpturing etc) is my life, it is who I am, what I know and what I love. Art is my way of life.

My Inspiration
I’m inspired by the living, being South African, being female, my family, my surroundings, nature, pain, joy and life in general.

Challenges
Being fully depended on Art, Graphics and freelancing means one is expected to work twice as hard compared to a person earning a salary at the end of the month.

Benefits
The benefits of being an Artist and Graphic Designer is the financial freedom that comes with it, not being limited by “salary agreed to.”

Future Plans

To open an art school around my home town Motetema, I’ve realised that not every child will be a doctor, a lawyer, not every child will be in the corporate world. There’s a young girl/boy who is an artist (writer, actor, painter, graphic designer,etc) with no guide,especially in rural settlements.

To get in touch Hola: 071 689 5215
e-mail: ausikipodi@gmail.com
facebook:Ausiki Art

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Fashion Guru makes a STATEment for himself

Having dreams of going to Paris would be the greatest dream for Refileo Dipudi better known as Refileo Guru. 24 year old young, vibrant and fashionable clothing designer Guru has big dreams for his fashion den that oozes style, elegant lifestyle and true African couture.

Guru is a true dreamer and a man that has greater vision for the fashion industry. Initially Guru studied Fine Arts and dropped out after realising that he had a “calling” to be a fashion designer. “In 2006 I decided to pursue a career in fashion designing; it was like a calling for me, a passion that had been waiting for me to grab it with both my hands.”

Like many young boys from eKasi, Guru had dreams of making it big one day. “I never knew I would be a clothing designer, I thought I would be in the arts, probably a singer or something,” he added.
Although Guru works from home, his workspace is simple yet the mind that runs behind it is one that is forever inspired with a passion for clothes and fabrics. His fabrics are elegant and the African feel is what drives this young man to the greatness he creates. “I design African contemporary clothing for woman mostly but I also occasionally design for men,” Guru said.

This young man does not just want to be a designer but a brand that stands out from all the rest. “State of Guru” is what will make him a brand as he feels that his clothing range is one of comfort, ability and elegance in its true African sense.
The Guru’s fabrics are indigenous with an incorporation of African prints. “I believe in the diversity and beauty of Africa hence a lot of my designs are Africa inclined,” he says. His inspiration comes from a few great designers yet David Tlale seems to be one of the greatest. “Tlale stands out for me as I feel that his craftsmanship showcases a lot of elegance and respect,” added Guru.


Fashion for many seems to be how many different colours one can wear and still look stylish, yet Guru says that colour blocking has become a trend even though that does not necessarily define whether one is a fashion icon or not.
“What one dresses like is ones voice. It’s the way one wants to be interpreted and how one wants to be seen as. Whether you’re in 50 colours or not,” added Guru.

“The State of Guru” seems to be on the pipeline for now but big plans are being made to ensure that his name gets out there and in your space.

“This industry is extremely competitive, however I do plan to get my brand out there.” said Guru. Plans of getting himself out there are to officially launch his clothing label in the next year. And yes Kasi Times will be there!

 

By Nonhlanhla Kobokwana

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Q&A With Zack O’Malley Greenberg: Empire State Of Mind Author

Zack O’Malley Greenberg is a New York based Forbes staff writer and author of ‘Empire State of Mind: How Jay-Z Went From Street Corner To Corner Office’ – an unofficial biography about rapper and businessman Jay-Z. I get up close and personal with Zack in this interview where he talks about life, work and his plans for the future.

IN: You started writing at an early age. Describe your first writing experience.

ZG: I first started writing for Boys’ Life Magazine at age 14, reviewing video games. My first reviews were for the Sega Dreamcast, which I received weeks before it was available in stores. Needless to say, this was the best job a teenager could have.

IN: How did the idea of writing a biography about Jay Z come about?

ZG: I was approached by editors at Penguin’s Portfolio imprint who’d read my articles about the business of Hip Hop on Forbes.com, and they asked if I’d be interested in writing a business-focused biography of Jay-Z. How could I say no?

IN: For those who have not yet read Empire State of Mind: How Jay-Z Went from Street Corner to Corner Office, what is it about?

ZG: It’s about how Jay-Z honed his entrepreneurial talents, moving from the streets of Brooklyn to the boardrooms of Manhattan and around the world. More info at www.zogreenburg.com/empire-state-of-mind

IN: Is there anything about Jay Z that surprised or shocked you when researching about him for the biography? Read the full story

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MiCasa’s Mo-T says his bit

With being nominated for multiple awards at the 18th annual South African Music Awards, and also being scheduled to perform at the very same event, it’s expected for them to have a hectic schedule around this time. But nevertheless, I got the opportunity to have a telephonic chat with one third of the sensational trio. Here’s what Mo-T, MiCasa’s trumpet player, had to share:

KT: I know you’ve probably been asked this a million times before, but please tell us how you guys got together?
Mo-T: Well, we were all scheduled to play at a hotel in Sandton. At that time I didn’t even know who Dr. Duda was. When the time to perform came, we were just randomly put together, and that’s where it all started. After that, we just started making music together.

KT: Was it a childhood dream or just a random moment in your life that saw you taking the music route?
Mo-T:
Oh it’s been a childhood dream! I come from a musical family. My father used to play for Mango Groove. So, since I was about five years old, I would just watch my dad play and perform. I was taken away by the experiences and as I grew up, I decided I’d also do music.

KT: Entering into a very well-dipped genre of music in SA, what was the biggest challenge you faced?
Mo-T:
Our biggest challenge was not being taken seriously by the industry. However, we really believed in our music and still carried on. In this industry, good musicians don’t have a platform or they’re not taken seriously because their different.

KT: What kind of House music do you guys produce and what’s the biggest influence behind your fresh and different sound? Read the full story

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Carol Ralefeta, The Divine Diva


This lady not only has a beautiful aura around her, but she has a golden voice to match. The first time I heard Carol Ralefeta’s voice, I was in awe! Recently, I finally summed up the courage to ask her for an interview. She agreed, and this is what transpired:

Boitumelo: For those who don’t know you, who is Carol Ralefeta? Where are you from?
Carol: I’m Carol Ralefeta. I was born in Mafikeng in the North West and moved to Joburg when I was 5 years old. I have been here ever since. I’m a radio presenter on the Divine Edge show on Metro FM on the Saturday breakfast slot between 5am and 9am, and Sundays from 3am to 6am. I am also a writer for SOUL magazine and a freelance make-up artist. I am an MC and voiceover artist as well.

Boitumelo: What does a day in Carol’s life entail?
Carol: I work really hard. My day is filled with radio as I do some retail radio as well, voiceovers, writing, and now and again a drink with the girls. I do a feature in SOUL magazine where I get to take celebs out for lunch then write about it, so that is really exciting.

Boitumelo: How did you get into the entertainment industry?
Carol: It was really hard getting into the industry. I started doing campus radio on the then RAU Radio. That was over 10 years ago! I then joined the newsroom at 94.7 Highveld Stereo, where I practiced as a journalist for about 2 years before exploring being behind the microphone. It was exciting and I’ve never looked back. I got the opportunity to join the Metro Fm team in April 2011 and I must say I love it!

Boitumelo: Do you feel you are successful or are you just getting started?
Carol: I am just getting started; there is so much I want to do. I understand I have to take baby steps, but I want to be that baby that ran before all the other kids.

Are you content with where you are in life right now? 
Carol: I will never be content! I am forever looking for ways and means to be inspired and challenged, so I will never rest.

Boitumelo: Any Read the full story

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Just 10 with Wandile Molebatsi

Pic Source: thenewage.co.za

Okay, so anyone who knows me will know that I’ve had a crush on Wandile Molebatsi for as long as the sun has been shining on this green earth! No, not because of his great looks and gorgeous smile; no, of course not! I ain’t that shallow… but that is indeed a bonus.

The reason I’ve loved him so much is because of his resilience and thirst for success in this industry. His constant fight to keep his passion alive; whether it be through his love for music or acting, it is so evident that he’s lifting Mzansi’s name and taking it to places industry legends only dream of.

So, after hunting him down for what felt like forever, I finally got to have just 10 questions to ask him. I wanted to know about his brush with death, where he comes from, his new movie and where he is going next. Here’s what we talked about…

Pops: Where is home and who helped raise you into becoming the talented man you are today?

Wandile: I was born at Lesedi Clinic and grew up in Rockville, Soweto. My parents then moved to the small holdings in Walkerville near the Vaal, in 1999. I am very blessed to have had both my parents in my life. My mother and father raised four boys, so you can imagine the grey hair we gave my poor parents. Their love is, without a doubt, the reason why I am who I am today.

Pops: You were involved in a car accident last year that had us all freaked out. It put you in a coma and here you are, back on our silver screens. What exactly happened?

Wandile: It was a very hard time for my family and friends. I was in ICU for four days, and it was the longest four days of our lives. I had been editing all night at Coal Stove (the production house I started with two of my friends in 2007). I then insisted on driving home – a combination of male bravado and youthful foolishness. My partners had asked me to rather sleep at one of their houses but I’d insisted that I would be fine. I fell asleep behind the wheel and crashed into a tree! I fell unconscious and bled internally. I thank God I didn’t hit anyone! Someone woke up to go see where the enormous bang had come from; the paramedics were called and I was then rushed to hospital and put in ICU.

Pops: Having begun your career in the television industry at a very early age on KTV, and in films like Cry the Beloved Country, what do you love about the bright lights, cameras and call sheets?

Wandile: I love entertaining! I think my mother realised this when I was still very young. Thankfully she was able to channel that toddler energy and found me an agent. I have always been in love with movies and music, and I’m so thankful that I have been able to pursue both. The art of creating a narrative through lyrics or a script, is one that I hope to continually refine and get the platform to express.

Pops: Who has been your major inspiration in your craft and what has kept you pursuing your passion?

Wandile: Otata John Kani and Winston Ntshona have been huge sources of inspiration. They really believed in the craft of theatre, and now film and television, for one to be able to convey more than just emotion, but also a fundamental moral standpoint. They did it first with Struggle/Workshop theatre, and now they are taking on difficult roles on screen.

Pops: You’re not only an actor and a producer, and you’re also a musician, self-taught instrumentalist and a rapper who forms part of a group called UJU. Where and when Read the full story

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Kicking Back with Maxhoba

In the spirit of Kasi Times’ motto of motivating, inspiring and empowering young people, Maxhoba isn’t a surprise candidate for an interview. This all-round entertainer amongst other things, sings, writes music, scripts and script translation, and also owns an entertainment company known as Hobacity.

Maxhoba started out in a group from the Eastern Cape that didn’t quite make their fame breakout a bit over ten years ago. He then went to working and touring with some of South Africa’s greats. He holds teaching and helping South African musicians grow, close to his heart. Hobacity and KBM entertainment have ventured into a production where they’re trying to bring back the live music trend by taking a live show called Back to The Music all around SA. So, after watching a spectacular show and a great performance, I wanted to know more about this guy, and here is what I found out:

Kasi Times: When was your first break into the music industry?

MaxHoba: It was in 2001 when I started working with HHP. We did the Harambe Project and that really started things out for me. It opened a lot of doors for recognition, not only among the youth but other people started taking notice. A lot of people know my stage name, Maxhoba, but don’t know my face.

KT: How do you think the market has changed from when you first entered the music scene?

MH:What I see is the focus has shifted to the money above quality delivery, from both the artists and recording companies. The record companies might have always been about making money, but I miss going to gigs and seeing other artists there to support the performers, not only when they themselves are performing. I’m very happy though about the state of the lifestyle of hip hop, but not the music. There are still a few cats like Khuli and AKA that still do good music.

KT: What word do you believe best describes your artistry and why?

MH: Let’s say I’m a “passionate” musician. I’m truly passionate about music and growing the music industry. When I was younger, the people who ran the industry were probably 10 years older than I am now, and to me that says we’re very close to being the ones that are running it. So if we don’t learn more and teach others after us, we’re going to end up where the Brenda’s and Mahlatini’s found themselves.

KT: How do you think working with some of the biggest names in SA hip hop has affected your career?

MH: I got a lot of experience from it, for instance, dealing with crowds. I was lucky to go through the ‘groupie era’ when I was still young. I can’t imagine only hitting the industry now as an old man in his 30s running after girls. I also learnt about time management and appreciation. And, because I didn’t only work with Hip Hop artists, I obtained knowledge from a different side of the industry, such as when I worked with Bra Don Laka and Ntsiki Mazwai.

KT: What, between launching your career and establishing your entertainment company, proved to be the most challenging?

MH: Well, the singing and music thing are straight up gifts from God. I didn’t have to go hustle anybody or need somebody to come and teach me how to sing; it just happened. The entertainment company is still struggling even today; firstly investors don’t Read the full story

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Chilling at Nelson Mandela Square with Melanie Ramjee

Hypress Pic Courtesy of Cosmopolitan

Melanie's Pic Courtesy of Cosmopolitan

It’s true when they say that your true passion becomes clear to you in the least expected ways. Melanie Ramjee studied fashion design after high school and went on to travel around the globe. She went from struggling through a bad relationship, to working part-time at a clothing store while working at a night club after hours. Melanie epitomizes what hard work, focus and the right dose of determination can do for you. I didn’t know what to expect prior to the meeting. Yet, I had what I dare call the best of times upon meeting this wonderful person with a beautiful soul. So, from what felt like a day out with an old good friend, here’s a bit about her and the PR world:

Kasi Times: How did you start out and when did you get established?
Melanie Ramjee:
Me and my boyfriend at the time ran a club in Joburg; he was deejaying and I was working at the door. As people who loved music, we decided to work with recording labels. He’d pick out the artists and I’d do PR for them. A few years later after working with a few companies and up and coming magazines, I decided to start my own company.

KT: What does a ‘busy day’ in your life entail?
MR: Well, a busy day is waking up at 9 o’clock which is really early in my life, going for endless meetings outside and in the office, and following up on emails. I also have to deal with the media, write press releases and sometimes doing interviews.

KT: What did you find to be the toughest thing about starting your career?
MR:
Starting my career was very easy because it was something I wanted to do. I’ve always wanted to start my own business but I’d been working for someone else since I was 12. And, even with the urging on from others to do my own thing, I still was very scared about factors such as an unstable pay check and how I would then manage to pay rent and support myself.

Pic Courtesy of Cosmopolitan

KT: Which brands or people do you enjoy working with the most?
MR:
Well, even though I’m not a drinker I always seem to be pulled towards alcohol companies. Smirnoff was the first big company I worked for. They took me around the world and I got to meet the likes of Kelis which, in my time, was big. I also worked with Brutal Fruit and I got the chance to work with Kim Kardashian. I’ve also worked with my friend Bonang Matheba.

KT: What role do you think Social Media plays in marketing clients or events?
MR:
About 3 years ago I was approached by SAB to tweet for them and they would pay me on condition that I unblocked my Twitter account. I couldn’t believe that they would really pay for that and that’s when I first experienced the power of social networks. Since then I’ve approached other clients and have been approached by others, and it’s impacted my clientele immensely. These days you won’t even get the job if you can’t offer the client that extra social network edge.

KT: Being in an industry that obviously demands that you’re well connected, what way do you believe is best to make and keep trustworthy contacts? Read the full story

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Quick Chat with Kabomo

A laid back and down-to-earth gentleman with a resume that could intimidate the most established of artists, Kabomo has a soulful voice that has been part of the backbone of South African music for over 10 years. He has now graced us with his own offering in his debut album ‘All Things Grey’. With a passion to inspire youth towards greatness, this writer, poet, producer, filmmaker, singer, songwriter, and production company owner, has fallen in love with what he does and appreciates all those that have inspired him to get here.

So, in between an early morning meeting and band practice, I managed to have a quick chat with Kabomo. I was star struck, but with pen in a shaky hand, this is what I managed to get out of him:

Kasi Times: What finally ignited the flame that led to you releasing your own album?
Kabomo:
I felt it was the right time for my story to be told. I had experienced a lot and done a lot of work in the industry to be relevant, and I’ve given the music enough chance to grow within me that it was almost bursting out.

KT: What’s your favourite thing about doing music?
KBM:
It’s definitely performing! Just doing my thing and seeing the audience’s reaction – when they know the lyrics and are singing back to you! I feel truly fulfilled knowing I can make people feel that way and enjoy themselves; it’s great because I put my heart into it and they appreciate it.

KT: What impact do you want your music to have on South Africa?
KBM:
I want people to discover their truth and to be able to find their passions. I write my music truthfully and I want to project that back to my audience.

KT: How were you first introduced to the industry?
KBM:
A friend of mine called to say Thembi Seete needed a road manager as hers wasn’t available. He explained all my duties over the phone. I then went on to co-produce Flabba’s album and around the same time I became editor for Y-mag.

KT: What do you want to see happen in music development in SA and how can you influence that?
KBM:
I would like to see more performance spaces for artists to showcase their talent. Underground circles have helped develop many careers and I would like to see that be taken advantage of more. I think by doing my thing and proving that it is possible, is the best way I could influence that.

KT: Who was your favourite artist to write for and why?
KBM:
I recently worked with Kelly Khumalo and though it wasn’t my favourite of all time, it was my most recent enjoyable experience. I discovered a humble, God-fearing woman behind all the drama.

KT: Who is your biggest music influence?
KBM:
Bheki Mseleku. I think he was the greatest pianist ever. His music was well-celebrated all over the world and his work truly inspired me.

KT: Which genre Read the full story

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Drinks with Tibz

Tebello Matsoane

For someone whose life revolves around the party scene, I did not expect to meet an intellectual and highly eloquent gentleman who enjoys reading in his spare time. Tebello Motsaone, also known as Tibz, is the owner of Show Love, which specialises in event management and brand activations. Their client portfolio includes MTVBase and Brutal Fruit. Show Love Music manages a number of Hip Hop DJs and multi-award winning rapper AKA. Tebello also co-owns the successful clothing brand, Head Honcho, with friend and business partner Nick Kaoma. We sat down for drinks and this is what he had to say about his life:

KT: How did you get into hosting events?
Tibz: I started planning my own birthday parties and people kept requesting for more. While working with a friend’s company that planned my 21st  birthday party, I suggested using hip hop alone for music and they insisted it wouldn’t work. So, I went solo and that’s how Show Love got started.

KT: How did your association with AKA begin?
Tibz: AKA was with Kamza, a close friend of mine and another guy in the Ivy League, and as I was setting up my website, Kamza hooked me up with his music. Around the same time Nick and I were starting Head Honcho and we needed people to wear it and we got them to do that and we did a lot of collaboration t-shirts with them.

KT: When and how did you start managing him?
Tibz: As we were working together, we grew incredibly close and he became like my little brother. I started advising him on what I thought was missing in his music career. As time passed, he asked me to manage him. Show Love Music started because of AKA and he remains my one and only artist.

KT: Are you looking to manage more artists in the future?
Tibz: With AKA I never thought I’d be in the music industry but it just happened. I prefer working with one artist, client or DJ at a time so that I can give them my full attention.

KT: What are the challenges you’ve faced in establishing and growing your business?
Tibz:
None of my businesses were started with any capital. I literally had to throw a party so I could throw another one and another one thereafter. We did that so Nick and I could get the clothes manufactured and marketed ourselves through posters. It was hard but it brought a lot of lessons with it too. Being so busy in my everyday (professional) life has subsequently put a strain on my personal relationships.

KT: What is the biggest influence in your industry? Read the full story

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Meet Zethu Mashika – A Star Behind the Stars

It is very refreshing to hear of someone from ekasi specialising in something different to the norm – like specialising in film scores. Okay, just so we’re on the same page, a film score is the background music composed for different scenes of a film in order to enhance the dramatic narrative and the impact of a certain scene. Zethu Mashika is one of those special, rare and interesting cases.

Achievements

WAKA StarsBorn in Benoni in the East Rand, the humble 27 year old Zethu is a music composer specialising in film scores, commercial music, title sequences and adverts. He has been part of the music industry for 8 years and continues to make an impact in the industry. He is one of South Africa’s youngest and first black composers to single-handedly score a feature film. He has written scores mostly for television and documentaries. His work includes the title sequence music for SABC 1’s Mzanzi Insider, Zwahashu, and Channel O’s Mcee Africa season one. He has composed scores for films such as Sky and Minutes to Nine, and has recently completed scoring for the forthcoming local feature film, Zama Zama. He has produced and composed for various artists such as H2O, Flabba, Zulu Mob, and Psyfo. In 2009, he produced and composed SABC 2’s election song performed by RJ Benjamin and Bongo Riot.

Music vs Expectations

It’s hard to believe that his talent is raw and untrained. His parents didn’t like the idea of him doing music. As a result, he was forced to make a quick decision to study something “solid.” After he matriculated, Zethu enrolled for an electro-mechanical engineering course at TUT. While at university, he struggled to shake off the music bug and this saw him eventually drop out during his first year to pursue his passion.

The Beginning

A friend hooked him up with artists like Flabba, H2O and Zulu Mob, for which he produced beats. His influence within the Hip Hop community was quickly recognized, but his focus was to get into the film industry. His career as producer within the music industry didn’t take off as he had wished – but he was glad it didn’t, because he believes it could’ve been harder to get into the film industry as a Hip Hop producer. He had always wanted to do film, but he thought it was almost impossible as the film industry was quite small at the time.

Growth

The first film he scored for was a short film from AFDA. This strengthened his profile and he used Read the full story

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Q&A with DJ Fanatic

Sitting in during his rehearsal for AKA’s birthday celebration at Hush Bar and Lounge in Rosebank, Kasi Times caught up with DJ Fanatic, whose real name is Thabiso Maphutse. DJ Fanatic is in his absolute element behind the decks and is fast becoming one of the best Hip Hop DJs in South Africa. Being the backing DJ of one of South Africa’s revolutionary rappers, AKA, he sure does have a lot of weight on his shoulders.

We squeezed in a few minutes from his crazy schedule, albeit with several interruptions, but once the dust settled and we finally got to our interview, we discovered a down to earth and very humble guy. Here are a few things we found out about him:

Q: What’s your fondest childhood memory or earliest connection with music?
A: I don’t remember much about my childhood pre-high school but what I do remember is being in the school choir.

Q: When did you decide that music would be the path you’d follow?
A: I didn’t really decide; I don’t even know when I started deejaying. I just saw myself spinning discs and because I really enjoyed it, I kept at it.

Q: Why did you choose to be a Hip Hop DJ?
A: I started out as a House DJ but it felt monotonous. Many people might not know this, but Hip Hop music has more beats and instruments. I saw it as a better challenge and that’s why I chose it.

Q: When was your break into the industry?
A:
I was signed by ShowLove in 2010.

Q: How did you become AKA’s DJ?
A: AKA recognised my skill. My manager, Tibz, approached me and told me that AKA was looking for a DJ. That’s how it started.

Q: What’s the best thing about your job?
A: Travelling and seeing beautiful places, but mostly connecting with the fans and getting the love and appreciation from them – and of course there are certain ‘perks’

Q: What is the most important lesson for those in your industry?
A: Don’t be bigger than the industry. Don’t get an ego and think you’re better than everyone just because you’re well-known. Always appreciate the fans because they are the ones that got you here and tomorrow they can also get you out. Most DJs and artists wonder why people don’t clap or appreciate them after their performance, it’s simply because they didn’t respect the people, so people don’t respect them back.

Q: What characteristics should DJs possess?
A: A certain presence when playing in front of a crowd. Good interpersonal skills and humility. They should be accessible and also stay away from all the stereotypes that surrounding DJs.

Q: What advice would you give to anyone wanting to make a break into the industry:
A:
If you absolutely believe that it’s your calling, follow your dreams with gusto and don’t treat it like just a hobby. For me, it’s my job and it’s part of me and who I am. Also, stay focused and make sure you have a plan. Stay in school; that’s very important, and teach yourself the business side of the industry as it’s not only about the glam and spinning discs.

Q: Who’s your role model? Read the full story

Posted in Music, ProfilesComments (4)

Model Watch: Nyasha Matonhodze

model profile

At 16 most girls only dream of being a super model, but for Nyasha Matohondze it’s a reality. It’s barely been two years since she entered the fashion industry but she’s already done stuff that many fail to accomplish in their entire modelling careers.

Nyasha was born in Zimbabwe and moved to London in 2003 to stay with her mother. Her career began in 2009 when she became a finalist at the Elite model look. She rose to fame in 2011 when she was chosen as the face of Louis Vuitton’s autumn/winter 2011 campaign in a lucrative contract deal that would later turn her into a success story.

Nyasha has walked the runway in various fashion weeks for several brands that include Louis Vuitton, Louis Gray, Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors to name a few. In 2011 alone she walked a total of 67 shows in New York, London, Milan and Paris; 47 for the spring 2012 season and 20 for the fall. She has also appeared in editorials of some of the most esteemed magazines in the world like Teen Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, W and Numero. Barely a week into the New Year Versace announced that Nyasha was their face of the brand’s pre-fall 2012 campaign.

From where l am standing, Nyasha’s future looks very bright. This goes to show that it doesn’t matter where you come from, your star will shine if you have the talent…well, in this case, the looks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Innocent Ndlovu
Twitter: @IamInnocentn
Blog: studioinn.tumblr.com

Posted in ProfilesComments (0)

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