Dumi Hi Phone – Sho Madjozi

Within the African hip hop community, there are often instances in which artists leave their home country to pursue an academic career elsewhere. When they return to their country and produce hip hop, they sometimes combine their native language with English, creating a unique blend of cultural references. However, there are also times in which artists choose to rap in their native tongue, even though they possess the capability to rap English. Continue reading “Dumi Hi Phone – Sho Madjozi”

Toya Delazy – Greatest

Several African hip hop artists have left their homelands to continue pursuing a musical career in another country. However, their roots are often present in their lyrics and music, showing strong ties to their country of origin and the dialogue of the Diaspora. This is somewhat the case for South African hip hop artist Toya Delazy, whose real name is Latoya Nontokozo Buthelezi. At just 28 years old, the influential hip hop artist’s origins are from Durban, South Africa. However, Toya Delazy is currently based in London. Despite being based in London, Toya Delazy’s music illustrates strong influences of her South African history and upbringing, as well as influences of being based in London. Continue reading “Toya Delazy – Greatest”

Kisses – Fifi Cooper

South Africa is known for having a strong female presence in the hip hop scene. This is especially true for 26 year old Fifi Cooper, who rose to the scene in 2010. But the work of Fifi Cooper has changed the once male dominated hip hop game. In May 2015, the music video “Kisses” by South African hip hop artist Fifi Cooper was uploaded to Youtube. The music video also features AB Crazy, another famous male, South Africa hip hop artist. 

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Shane Eagle – JULIA

South African hip hop artist Shane Eagle takes a simple and smooth approach to discuss important social and political topics in his music video JULIA. The music video opens with the South African hip hop artists eating cereal and blankly starring at a television screen playing cartoons. The video then cuts to black and white clips of the artists, where he can be seen standing on top of what appear to be poor, slum-like villages. Shane Eagle’s lyrics provide a message about discussing the harsh truth many South African’s face. This message is intensified when his lyrics “We rap about the diamonds and never about the violence, And always about the jewels and never about the pools, That my people still drowning in” are played over a grim South African background. This is one effective way that Shane Eagle highlights the social injustices many South African’s face daily, and how their voices are rarely heard.

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South African Culture and Hip Hop

DJ Vigilante, K.O (Mr Cashtime) and AKA are no strangers within the South African hip hop community. The three prominent hip hop artists came together in April of 2013 when they released the music video for the single “God’s Will”. After watching the music video and reading through the lyrics, it is clear that there are many intersections between what is being said and what is being shown in the video. Additionally, this arguably presents connections between the local culture and broader hip hop community. The entire video appears to be shot in an empty, desert-like setting, which could possibly be somewhere in South Africa. But despite being in the middle of the nowhere, the artists in the video are wearing famous designer brands which almost pop out from the empty background. The stark contrast between the music video setting and the images the artists are portraying arguably illustrates a blend of hip hop and local cultures. Continue reading “South African Culture and Hip Hop”