“Lead The Way” – Tehn Diamond
I remember tweeting Tehn a while back asking about a follow up to his 2011 classic collaborative effort with Simba Tagz titled L.I.E (Love Is Evol). Apart from the fact that the project was well executed and jam-packed with nostalgic ballads, I really wanted to hear more of Tehn singing. Forgive me for going ahead and saying it, but Tehn proved on that project that he was a far more superior singer than he is a rapper! Now that’s one heck of a bold statement to make considering that Tehn also happens to be one of the nicest MC’s on the mic, period, but his latest single “Lead The Way” justifies my point. In a world where the likes of Drake are now largely being accepted as ‘singing rappers’, I think Tehn has found a lane that works for him and complements his full skill set. “Lead the Way” is a return to a 90’s house party vibe according to Tehn (see tweet below) and no doubt felt that way with Yagi Dojo re-creating the sound to perfection.
I think I’ve said too much already, but have a listen and let me know what you think!
“One Time” (The Pro-G Remix)
It goes without saying that AKA is one of the best, if not the best, urban hip-hop act out of the continent right about now. AKA is in the news for all sorts of reasons at the moment but the good news is that the music hasn’t been compromised one bit! This year he has featured on quite a number of international collaborations and has dropped a few new singles of his own that include the most recent single “Dreamwork” with Yanga and “One Time” which I featured on the blog earlier in the year.
The single has become very popular since it’s release, partly thanks to the “Blesser” & “Gold-digger” references in the song which have been dominating social media chatter for a while now. But that wasn’t my inspiration for making a remix to his hit single though.. The original brought back an amazing nostalgic feeling and I was so inspired after hearing it that I decided to make my own version of it! I made this one about a month back and figured the time was right to release it to the people. Big S/O to AKA for inspiring this one and consistently giving us great music!
Have a listen and let me know how you feel..
“Lite Spots” – Kaytranada
I first came across Kaytranada’s music on Soundcloud whilst gem-searching some years back. I instantly got hooked to his nostalgic instrumental hip-hop sound as any fanatic of the genre in the 90’s likely would. I soon found out that Kaytranada was pretty much a relatively unknown producer which was crazy to me at the time, but then again Soundcloud is filled with such undiscovered talents. It wasn’t too long after that though, that Kaytranada started getting recognized thanks to his remixes of popular classics like Janet Jackson’s “If” and Missy Elliot’s “Sock It To Me”. His Soundcloud page has been stacking up the remixes ever since.
Fast forward to 2016 and finally Kaytranada has dropped his debut album titled 99.9% and it’s everything one could expect and more! Mostly instrumental, he hardly makes you notice with cleverly placed vocals and a consistent flow that gets you lost in the music. A popular stand-out off his album has been “Got It Good” featuring Craig David but the whole project is really impressive, especially from a producer. Watch the first video off the album for one of the tracks titled “Lite Spots” and check out Kaytranada showing off his dancing moves alongside a robot!
It’s been about 6 months since I released my last remix of Kapital K‘s “Dough” so I decided to go back into the lab and finally got something new for the Soundcloud fam!
Emtee has been one of the new comers to watch in the SA Hip Hop scene and deservedly won a couple of Metro FM Awards earlier this year for his efforts. One of the awards he won was for the official remix of his smash hit “Roll Up” featuring AKA & Wizkid which did some serious damage on the airwaves last year. I managed to hustle the acapella and gave Roll Up a re-up of my own which you can stream now via Soundcloud! The good news is there’s plenty where this came from and I plan to release more frequently for the second half of 2016, so do keep an eye out.
Stream, share & feel free to let me know what you think..
“Kuze Kuse” ft. Emtee – Fifi Cooper
I first came across Fifi Cooper’s music late last year as she was being dubbed the “First Lady of Motswako” and potentially the queen of SA hip-hop by fans, artists & industry experts alike. The first song I heard from her was Monate-C which according to Fifi’s interview with The Sowetan was a message to the hater’s telling them to stop hating and watch the space. She described the song as fun in that interview, but it was more of a hardcore introduction to the rapper which was probably the point. When AKA did an all-female remix for his 2015 hit single “Baddest”, Fifi’s verse was also a clear standout, and she capped a very successful year off by releasing her debut album titled “20Fifi”.
2016 has proved to be an even better year with Fifi taking home 3 Metro FM Awards for her efforts and arguably dropping her biggest single to date titled “Kuze Kuse”. The single features another exciting new Mzansi rapper Emtee, and has been doing the rounds on radio & tv. Fifi surprisingly sings really well for an artist largely considered to be a rapper (think Drake..) which gives her a competitive advantage over the competition. But don’t get it twisted, when it comes to bars she also brings the heat which makes her the total package! The future looks pretty set for Fifi and at this rate it doesn’t seem so ridiculous to back her to hold the Queen of SA Hip-Hop title in the near future..
Watch the “Kuze Kuse” video above and let me know what you think.
“Kontrolla” (Remix) – Kapital K
The homie Kapital K has been relatively quiet on the music side since the Diddy standing ovation last year, but he has slowly started dropping some new music to keep us guessing in 16′.
Earlier in the year Kap dropped “Diaspora” which was the first track from him since the RMC conference. Diaspora was the first time I’d ever heard Kapital K rap in Shona (one of Zimbabwe’s official languages) and it seemed to mark the beginning of a different direction for him as an artist. Of course at the time, everyone wanted to know if he’d been signed and what Diddy said after his stunt, but there hadn’t been any official word on that. However, Kap recently came out to clear the air with a statement:
“Now, I had my whole Diddy stunt last year and yes great things came out of that which I will disclose in due time but don’t be naive to assume just because I did that I got a deal and now I’m on! Not yet. Who said I wanted to be signed to Badboy anyway?”
See full post on Kapital K’s Facebook page
This was followed with the release of “Kontrola”, a remix of Drake & Popcaan’s hit single. Although his remix is relatively short, it has been very well received and showcased his versatility as an artist. There seems to be a conscious effort to move beyond rap and evolve as an artist which I think is a positive move for him.
It’ll be interesting to see where Kapital K goes from here but for now stream “Kontrolla” via Soundcloud above and tell me what you think.
“Way It Go” (ft. Tumi, Youngsta & Nasty C) – DJ Switch
“Way It Go” dropped about 5 months ago now, blew up but eventually the buzz died down as is the norm these days with urban music. At the time, Nasty C was really beginning to blow after his “Juice Back” single and was proving to be one of the best new artists to watch out for in 2016. Tumi, being the legendary MC and rap extraordinaire that he is, was of course expected to deliver accordingly, and Youngsta was arguably the relatively unknown rapper to complete the team. My expectations were that Tumi would take the best verse, being the most experienced and technically a better rapper, followed by Nasty C with all the hype around him at the time. But after listening to the joint, I was pleasantly surprised to discover Youngsta comfortably taking the best verse on the song!
What really stood out for me was how Youngsta authentically delivered his verse in the most Cape-coloured way, whilst staying relevant to the vibe. It goes without saying that both Tumi & Nasty C held their own on the track, but someone was always going to take the best verse naturally. With Cape Town artists having always struggled to break through into the mainstream market, unlike their Joburg counterparts, Youngsta represents a real ray of hope for change in that regard. It remains to be seen how the rest of the country reacts to more of his music, but if “Way It Go” is anything to go by, I’m backing him for the win! Shout out to DJ Switch for being bold enough to feature a Cape Town artist alongside the heavyweights, and in that way sparking the debate. Feel free to share your thoughts!
“Do The Most” – Tshego
Cassper Nyovest‘s label, Family Tree added a few new young artists to the roster last year and Tshego has turned out to be one of the most promising talents signed since. The first time I heard him was on Cassper’s Tsholofelo album and he immediately made a good first impression after his feature on “Cold Hearted”. Truth be told though, I haven’t followed him much since but most of the buzz in the streets has been over his features.
He recently dropped a single titled “Tell em Say” featuring Nasty C, Cassper Nyovest & Gemini Major and that’s been doing the rounds on urban radio & in the scene. “Do the most” is the follow-up freestyle to the single and looks set to be a street anthem! The future looks pretty bright for Tshego but only time will tell us how far he can go. Watch the video for “Do the most” freestyle directed by @OwenBands
“All My Friends” ft. Tinashe & Chance The Rapper – Snakehips
London production-duo Snakehips recently made their first ever Coachella festival appearance which coincided with their “All My Friends” EP release. Pretty big deal for them no doubt, but the EP itself also lived up to expectations. Of the four tracks they featured on the EP, “All My Friends” was naturally the lead single and was released late October last year. As seems to be the norm these days, I got on to this song relatively late but then again, there’s just so much music being released nowadays, who can keep up anyway?
Surprisingly, they managed to get both Chance the Rapper & Tinashe on the track for a pretty perfect sounding collaboration. According to Teen Vogue, they had to send the track back and forth just because they were so busy and everyone was in different parts of the world. Hardly sounds like it, but it is 2016 after all! “All My Friends” is all about a night out with friends going wrong which I for one can relate to. Let’s just say sometimes things unnecessarily go way overboard when people go out clubbing with their friends! The beat is infectious and the hook is super catchy too. Check out the Director’s cut for “All My Friends” above.
“Basspiration” (DJ Mix) – DJ Doowap
DJ Doowap is the unofficial fifth member of the legendary kwaito music group Boom Shaka, at least that’s what I thought when I first came across her social media pages and music. She often rocks those multi-colored braids and has a 90’s fashion style, and she tops that off by being one heck of a creative DJ! DJ Doowap is best known for being the face of Dubstep on YFM but I became a fan off of her Soundcloud page alone. Often sharing lots of cool bass music, she also drops a mix or two for the fans periodically, which brings us to the purpose of this post.
Her latest mix is titled “Basspiration” and in my opinion really showcases the wide range of her taste in music in general! She dabbles and mixes in so many different genres & future beats in just under an hour and has packed some serious tunes in there to kick-start any party. Check the mix out via her Soundcloud, and do keep an eye out for her.
Follow her via Twitter: @DJ_Doowap