South African Pop vs. Hip Hop 

​Today i’ve decided to take a look at some South African hip hop and pop, I was very excited to look into their music scene as a vocalist and just as a music lover. So for the South African pop scene I listened to a song from Vusi Nova; Vusi is an Port Elizabeth born artist who got his big break singing in the Port Elizabeth Opera House. I listened to his 2016 single “Thandiwe” which reminded me of a great American R&B song it had vey great bass line, dealing with one of the usual themes of love, and the video is very reminiscent of a early Ne-yo or Usher music video.  The songs title “Thandiwe” means loving one in Xhosa, which is the official language of South Africa. The chorus of the song has a really similar chord progression of the recent US smash hit by Rihanna, “Love on the brain” with all things considered the song became a huge success and even Vusi didn’t have the same level of successful the song was still acknowledge as one of his most beautiful songs released that year. Overall the songs is very enjoyable to listen to, the artist is clearly vocally talented and he has gained another fan in the US.

Now I turn my focus to the current South African rap scene with the Hip Hop track Mayibabo by Kwesta featuring okmalumkolkat, maphorisa, and DJ bucks. This track was released in 2016 and definitely gives you the grimy, trap music vibe you can get from emcees such as Joey Badass or Non Commercialized Kodak Black #NoFlocking. The beat utilizes wind instruments, slight synthesizer and vocal samples which create an amazing beat that doesn’t get old and pumps like some of my favorite songs from the states. Even though the elements of this song are sticking to the average trap style it still brings in elements that were more indigenous to South Africa where as “Thandiwe” showed no original style choices. This is not a comparison of skill level, its more of the most likely to be more successful in their own as well as foreign markets.  Thandiwe by Vusi Nova – Mayiboba by Kwesta featuring okmalumkolkat, maphorisa, and DJ bucks


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