Sketchy Bongo is without a shred of doubt one of South Africa’s most talented music production virtuosos.
And after a run making waves and churning out summer smash hits with the likes of Shekhinah, AKA, Da L.E.S, Aewon Wolf and Jimmy Nevis amongst others, the 27 year old Durbanite has finally liberated a full body of work.
Unmasked is a 14 track synthetic dovetail of Sketchy Bongo’s unique vibe exploring different sounds to create a rich, solid listen who’s listener will not be easily pinned down as a strict lover of a specific genre.
Much like the stylistically masked Wolf Pack producer himself, the album’s identity creates a new niche for Sketchy – bringing together EDM, Pop, Dance and Hip Hop amongst others – weaved seamlessly and blended into one addictive, groovy, acoustic and beachy listen.
During a time when there’s an ongoing debate on whether or not Hip Hop has finally dethroned house music as the country’s leading commercial genre, and whether or not Durban will soon become the new hub for the local music business, this album goes beyond those conversations to appeal to people who love having a good time listening to a solid record.
You’re likely already in love with tracks 13 and 14, Let You Know and Back To Beach featuring Shekhinah. Both songs garnered both artists national recognition and plenty commercial success, and as well awakening the masses to the emergence of an alternative Durban bred sound that blended genres that had not be explored as much locally.
Both tracks were loved for their relaxed, soulful mid tempo dance vibes. They were also somewhat beachy, something fresh for a country who’s been listening to music cooked in studios where there’s no beach anywhere near.
Well, Unmasked is this feeling.
Blast From The Past with Shekhinah strategically opens the album. We’ve come to know of the unfailing magic that comes out from Shekhinah’s powerhouse soulful vocals and his masterful instrumentations and the opening song solidifies that. Naturally, the song is ready for the Top 40, the beach, the taxi boot and the club. It’s beautiful, relaxed, groovy, soulful and addictive.
We are gonna go ahead and name Walk On The Clouds one of our favourite songs so far in 2017. The marriage between Tresor’s beautiful and haunting vocals and Sketchy’s distinct assembly of organic reverberations is so perfect it’s almost hard to believe this song waited this long to born.
But because Sketchy Bongo has refined the art of exploring different genres and introducing them to his world without much drama, we are also treated to some trap on track 3, Having Fun featuring Durban rap group WTF, as well as Wolf Pack homie Aewon Wolf. The song is a bit of a detour from what we started at the beginning of the album, but the catchy hook makes that worthy.
One of my personal favourites in this album is Love Me In The Dark with Kaien Cruz, so much that I had to keep it on repeat a few times before resuming. First of all, you just have to find out more about Kaien Cruz! Her effortlessly beautiful, yet simple, clean and authentic vocals work well with the dance tune. The song has a very easy going feel, although the kicks take a bigger spotlight on this one than the previous songs. Reminds me of All About It with Jimmy Nevis, a song I will forever thank for good times on the treadmill.
The producer’s collaboration with dance twin brethen duo Locnville on Blue Moon is sure to extend his reach to new spaces, and will sure score him him bigger deals than that MTV Base exclusive. The album now takes a turn to pure electro, complete with robotic vocals. You know some Shimmy Beach gigs in Cape Town are coming.
It’s back to EDM again on Sheen Skalz on Get Right. Rap and EDM, yes! Again, another personal fave. Simply grand in world class production, rich enough to be play listed at your party when you want guests to have a good time.
Furaha Lakini Maskini was entirely surprising. We’ve mentioned here how Sketchy Bongo is clearly unafraid to put his skills in full use exploring different sounds and finding a smart way of fitting it within his own, but the collaboration with Gemini Major and Aewon Wolf takes us to that blend of dance and organic African traditional instrumentation for an authentic continental jam.
All in all, Unmasked is a grand, solid debut album from Sketchy Bongo. Go and get it, you will not regret!
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Internship Applications for Cassper’s Fill Up Moses Mabhida – Details
Cassper Nyovest is looking for young people to work at his upcoming Fill Up Moses Mabhida stadium shindig.
The rapper on Monday announced the return of the Fill Up Internship programme, which he first launched in 2017 as he conquered FNB Stadium.
Nyovest started the internship programme as a means to pay it forward and equip young people with tangible skills across various event disciplines.
This year’s Fill Up Internship Programme will be open to Durban residents only.
Anyone 18 years old and above may apply.
The application process will be done via interviews.
Interested candidates need only bring along their IDs and attend the interview session.
The following departments will be interviewing for interns: Operations, Talent Operations, Logistics, Accreditation, Hospitality & Catering, Merchandise, Marketing, PR and Sponsorship.
Date: Saturday, 17 November 2018
Time: Interviews will take place between 10 am and 3 pm
Location: Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban
The #FillUpMosesMabhida Internship Programme will run from Wednesday, 28 November 2018 until Friday, 30 November 2018. All interns will also be required to attend the concert on Saturday, 1 December 2018 to apply their learnings.
Ticket prices range from R100 – R450 and hospitality packages range from R1495 to R2999. Tickets can be purchased at all major stores with Computicket outlets or online here
Swizz Beatz Has Been Confirmed For Black Coffee’s ‘Music Is King’ Concert
Swizz Beatz is billed to perform at Black Coffee’s looming Music Is King Concert on December 15th.
The first batch of performers at Black Coffee’s hotly anticipated Music Is King concert featured a fine selection of the continent’s hottest acts. And on Thursday, Swizz Beatz became the first international act to be unveiled as being part of the line-up.
The acclaimed American Hip Hop music producer, who is currently adding final touches to his highly anticipated album, Poison, will perform alongside a bevvy of Africa’s finest on December 15th at ProTicket Dome, when Black Coffee is hosting his inaugural Music Is King concert.
Swizz Beatz, having recently made a massive noise sparking on-going online conversations with his production of the Lil Wayne single ‘Uproar’, this famed New York DJ, Rapper and producer is no stranger to SA having recently been here. He will return to play an exclusively curated set for his South African fanbase alongside DJ friend Black Coffee.
The inaugural Music Is King Concert, an international concert experience and brainchild of SA’s own Black Coffee with the support of Soulistic Music and U-Live Africa today announced an additional waves of performers to join headliners Nasty C, Lady Zamar, Burna Boy and Riky Rick at the concert taking place this December in Johannesburg.
Local favourites Kenzhero and DJ China have also been added to the lineup. Having built a huge local and international following, these superstar DJs have been creating music for over two decades.
Also joining the line-up is international label Keinemusik’s own &ME.
With his hit track ‘Muye’ remixed by Black Coffee currently on high rotation on SA airwaves right now, he recently released his debut EP on DJ Koze’s Pampa Records ‘In Your Eyes’. As co-founder of the incomparable Keinemusik label, &ME has proven to be a master of impeccable delivery in his productions over the past few years.
Internationally acclaimed DJ Black Coffee earlier this month confirmed this mammoth undertaking, the Music is King concert which would feature his industry friends alongside a long list of other surprises not to be announced.
Music Is King set to take place at the TicketPro Dome in Johannesburg this December.
Nasty C, AKA, Shekhinah On Spotify’s Most Streamed SA Artists
Being one of the most nominated MCs at the looming SA Hip Hop Awards is not the only thing Nasty C will be celebrating this week.
Spotify has also named him the most streamed South African artist for 2018, putting him in the good running to dominate year-end charts with just as much impact.
Nasty comes ahead of some of the year’s hottest acts in the past fiscal – a list including AKA, Jeremy Loops, Shekhinah and Dj Maphorisa. Mind you, that makes Shekhinah the most streamed South African female artist.
The giant music streaming platform also revealed their most streamed international artists, and Drake’s In My Feelings anthem dominates. No surprises there.
In addition to topping every chart with a slew of scorchers and a hit album this year, Aubrey also broke the internet with the viral #InMyFeelingsChallenge, which saw millions sharing homemade clips of themselves vibing to the song.
Not even a near-fatal diss by Pusha T could stop the Dreezy’s momentum.
In total Drake appeared a further four times on the list of Spotify’s Top Global Songs of Summer 2018 (northern hemisphere).
He also consistently dominates the top 10 most streamed songs by South African audiences list since Spotify’s March, 13th South African launch (see full rankings below) with God’s Plan at number one, In My Feelings at number three and Nice For What at number six.
Girls like You by Maroon 5 (feat. Cardi B) came in second on the global summer list and featured at number 10 on the top songs streamed by South African audiences since launch rankings. Post Malone is also shown local love by appearing three times on this list with Psycho (feat. Ty Dolla $ign) at number five, Better Now at number seven and Rockstar at number nine.
The top 10 artists most streamed by South African audiences since launch*
- Post Malone
- Ed Sheeran
- Kanye West
- J. Cole
- The Weeknd
- Maroon 5
The top 10 tracks most streamed by South African audiences since launch*
- God’s Plan – Drake
- SAD! – XXXTentacion
- In My Feelings – Drake
- Love Lies (with Normani) – Khalid
- Psycho (feat. Ty Dolla $ign) – Post Malone
- Nice For What – Drake
- Better Now – Post Malone
- Young Blood – 5 Seconds of Summer
- Rockstar – Post Malone
- Girls Like You – Maroon 5 (feat. Cardi B)
The top 10 local artists most streamed by South African audiences since launch*
- Nasty C
- Jeremy Loops
- Joyous Celebration
- Sun-EL Musician
- DJ Maphorisa
The top 10 local tracks most streamed by South African audiences since launch*
- GoldFish – Hold Your Kite (feat. Sorana)
- Lady Zamar – Collide
- Mlindo The Vocalist – AmaBlesser (feat. DJ Maphorisa)
- Sun-EL Musician – Bamthathile
- Kwesta – Spirit (feat.Wale)
- Shekhinah – Suited
- Black Coffee – Drive (feat. David Guetta)
- Shekhinah – Please Mr
- DJ Maphorisa & DJ Raybel – iWalk Ye Phara (feat. Moonchild Sanelly, K.O & Zulu Mkhathini)
- Dlala Mshunqisi, Distruction Boyz & DJ Tira – Pakisha