Zim hip hop has a lot to learn from Mzansi’s best

Sharon Kavhu

Harare – South African rapper Cassper Nyovest’s outstanding performance and audience response at Glamis Arena proved that Zimbabwe’s hip hop has a lot to learn from other continental artistes playing the same genre.   

The Mzansi talented artiste, who appeared on stage after midnight, gave a glittering performance that got the audience singing along to most of his songs.

On stage, Nyovest had moments to interact with the audience. The way he effortlessly clicked with the audience felt like he was playing to a Mzansi audience.

“Thank you guys for coming. It has been so special to me, you guys are such a beautiful crowd, I love you,” he yelled.

He kept his fans on their feet when he performed some of his hits, among them Gusheshe, Tito Mboweni, Ghetto and Doc Shebeleza.

Speaking to The Southern Times after the show, Zimbabwean hip hop artistes said they had learnt a lot from the popular South African musician.

Russel ‘Russo’ Chiradza, a music producer, said artistes had to make their music more commercial in order to make an impact locally and regionally.

“Basically, SA hip hop has grown with rappers such as A.K.A and Nyovest leading the way, making ‘noise’ on the international scene. Hip hop used to be associated with thug life but now it is being commercialised and today hip hop in SA is dominating other genres,” said Russo.

Russo said Zim hip hop was lacking originality as many tried to imitate American rappers.

He said Nyovest’s music has a South African feel which makes it unique in that he uses his mother language original beats.

Kevin Sagomba of the popular ‘Zvidhori’ track, also known as MC Cut, said the strength of SA hip hop artists is their exposure on DStv Channels.

“Nyovest was given an overwhelming response in Zimbabwe because the audience was familiar with his music.

“People get familiarised with what they are exposed to and in this case many people in the SADC region are more familiar with SA’s hip hop and Nigerian music from DStv,” said MC Cut.

“As Zim hip hop artistes, we need to do more videos of high quality that can qualify to be screened on DStv musical channels.  This will help us grow and our songs will be marketed widely.”

He said given resources, Zim hip hop artistes would improve.

Tehn Diamond of the ‘Happy’ and ‘Pihwai Madrinks Askana’ fame said there was a lot to learn from Nyovest especially his work ethic.

“He is committed to the business side of his music and executing on his vision relentlessly. Work ethic and vision are a dangerous combination and he has taken full advantage of that,” he said.

September 2017
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