Subscribe to: Newsletter      Comments      News
Speech to the MDDA/Sanlam Awards by Mandla Langa
First of all thanks to the Master of Ceremonies and thereafter, plaudits to the MDDA, and to Sanlam, for coming up with the awards, which, hopefully, will give encouragement to the young practitioners in media. And everyone knows, it has been said repeatedly, that media stands between chaos and us.

I am somewhat familiar with chaos, having had a ringside seat in places where it has unleashed itself and, if truth be told, caused a little bit of it in my days of youth.

A friend of mine, Jim Kelman, is a Scottish writer; his novel, How Late it was, How Late, was a joint winner of the Booker Prize in 1994. It’s a bleak story whose genesis I witnessed, of Sammy, an incoherent Glaswegian drunk who gets beaten by cops and goes blind. The novel is about his efforts to come to terms with his disability, in an unforgiving world full of judgmental people.

I was thinking about Sammy’s predicament, his blindness and struggle to navigate the world as I started writing this speech, realising that the question of blindness in a seeing world, of illiteracy in a land where the directions are in hieroglyphics, is what exercises a huge section of our population.

I was in exile in Botswana in the late 1970s, following the exodus of young people after the widespread uprisings whose epicentre was Soweto in 1976. Apart from the students whose education had been uprooted was a motley crew of refugees, some of whom had left the country for all sorts of reasons. We had established a succession of cultural formations and I had already made a kind of a name – or acquired some notoriety – as a poet and had an old Corona typewriter in the backroom where I stayed in the suburb of Broadhurst.

One of the South Africans was Bra David, whom we called Bra Deyi, who was wanted by the police and who lived with his girlfriend, Sis’ Maisie, who also ran a shebeen in the area. Bra Deyi was the quiet, ageless type who didn’t encourage intimacy, who doted on Sis’ Maisie, who was pretty in that dangerous way and was much younger and seemed wise in the ways of the street.

One day, Sis Maisie disappeared and we learnt from Bra Deyi that she had gone back home. Her absence had a devastating effect on Bra Deyi; he hit the bottle hard and started fraternising with us, something he hadn’t done before. Then, one evening, a few months since Sis Maisie’s departure, Bra Deyi dropped in unannounced and sat down on the only chair in the room. He had been drinking.

“Ek hoor jy’s a poet,” he said. I must have murmured something to the effect that I had written a few poems and some of them had actually been used as an indictment in the trial of the black consciousness activists.

Then he told me that he had been writing to Sis Maisie, who was now in Botshabelo in Bloemfontein, and she hadn’t responded to any of his messages. They had a child together back home and he was worried about them, wanting to know if they’d been arrested. And then, with tears streaming down his face, Bra Deyi told me that he hadn’t treated Sis Maisie very well. Now he wanted to make amends. “So, my laaitjie, I want you to write to her, en jy moet daardie ding gebruik,” he said, pointing at my typewriter. He exhorted me to reach deep down into my soul and bring out evocative language that would melt her heart. “Ek soek haar terug.” I had a feeling that if this little exercise failed to produce positive results I’d be held responsible. And Bra Deyi wasn’t the kind of guy you wanted to disappoint, even if the matter were out of your hands.

So I wrote the letter, now and then using lines from my friend Keorapetse Kgositsile, borrowing allusions from Aime Cesaire, for instance:

    And in this inert town, this squalling throng so astonishingly detoured from its movement, from its meaning, not even worried, detoured from its true cry, the only cry you would have wanted to hear because you feel it alone belongs to this town; because you feel it lives in it in some deep refuge and pride in this inert town, this throng detoured from its cry of hunger, of poverty, of revolt, of hatred, this throng so strangely chattering and mute.

I pored over the love poems of Pablo Neruda:

      Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
      To think that I do not have her. To feel that I have lost her….
      Why will the whole of love come on me suddenly
    When I am sad and feel you are far away?

And then there was Keorapetse Kgositsile:

      There are memories between us
      Deeper than grief. There are feelings
      Between us much stronger than the cold
      Enemy machine that breaks the back
      Sister, there are places between us
      Deeper than the ocean, no distances
      Pry your heart open, brother, mine too
      Learn to love the clear voice
      The music in the memory pried
    Open to the bone of feeling, no distances

I wrote Bra Deyi’s letter that was shot through with stolen poetry, hoping against hope that Sis Maisie would respond and give this poor man a sign. I then had to leave Botswana for Lesotho in 1979 and thence to Mozambique, Angola and, much later Lusaka. Eleven years later, in December 1990, I stumbled into Bra Deyi, at Nasrec, during the Consultative Conference of the ANC, which was the period of the return of Oliver Tambo and hundreds of exiles. Bra Deyi was much older and heavier and somewhat more jovial. This surprised me, for I had thought he would be his lugubrious self. After the chitchat of catching up, I asked him if Sis Maisie ever replied. For a moment he was disoriented and then he started laughing, almost breaking into hysterics. What’s wrong, I asked. “She didn’t reply because she couldn’t read,” he said. “She did get the letters but was too ashamed to get anyone to read them for her.” As I parted with him I thought of all that wasted poetry.

Much later, I think it was 1981, in Angola, I encountered another form of blindness in a seeing world. There was a ritual every Monday night in the camps, which was called the Jazz Hour, which was a period of affirmation and regeneration by the community of trainees and officers. Here, I met an old friend from Lesotho, who confided that he was embarrassed by the fact that he couldn’t read and write. I asked the Company Commissar for permission to teach him; once that was accepted, the comrade and I got down to work. Today he has built on that foundation and is a functional member of society.

This reality of this blindness was impressed on me when I was in Tianamen Square in 1998, with Neil Harvey and Zwelakhe Sisulu the late CEO of the SABC. Suddenly, I found that my companions had disappeared and I was alone, without our minders and translators. Tiananmen Square is a vast stammering acreage of concrete and wall-to-wall humanity. I scanned the directional signs, perhaps to find my way back to the hotel. They were in Chinese characters, blank and unresponsive to my enquiry. No one spoke English and, to my horror, I found that I had become a curio, a prop for the millions of Chinese tourists that had never been within touching distance of a black person. A few posed beside me while their pictures were taken. Mercifully, just as I was about to collapse from claustrophobia, Zwelakhe and Neil and our Chinese hosts reappeared and disrupted the queue of people that had formed lining up to have their picture taken with me. I was thus delivered from a possible panic attack.

In today’s South Africa, this blindness and the inability to access the amenities still exist. In many instances the survival of these hobbling conditions is more sophisticated and hides under the guise of openness. Many of us believe that the wretched of the earth have struck a better bargain now that there is a proliferation of communication platforms. For instance, we cite the growth of the print and electronic media, radio, television, on-line blogs, cellular telephones, and information at our fingertips. Granted, these are measures of progress and success of the democratic dispensation ushered in two decades ago. They are part of the good story of twenty years of media freedom and diversity and couldn’t have happened in this accelerated form outside of a democratic process.

A niggling question is one of how the successes towards the creation of diversity in the media have permeated those corners of society where they are most needed. I cannot claim to have monitored the media comprehensively in the period leading to the recent elections. But I was always appalled by the level of desperation in the utterances of those manning the barricades. There was a refrain, people vowing to withhold their vote to punish whosoever they regarded as culpable for lack of delivery. It seems to me that there is blindness when it comes to reading the constitution and the history of blood that forms its prologue. What I saw and read and heard was more about reporting the spectacle of revolt, bringing out the images of fire, rather than contributing some roadmaps, charts, which could guide us towards resolving problems.

A lot has been achieved. There are many platforms. The choice might seem wide but we have to ask ourselves what that choice seriously offers. To what extent are South Africans more enlightened than they were twenty years ago? Herbert Marcusse had this to say:

“The means of communication, the irresistible output of the entertainment and information industry carry with them prescribed attitudes and habits, certain intellectual and emotional reactions which bind the consumers to the producers and, through the latter to the whole social system. The products indoctrinate and manipulate; they promote a false consciousness which is immune against its falsehood…Thus emerges a pattern of one-dimensional thought and behavior.”

I have to end by pointing out that we’re in trouble. Our languages are in trouble. You just have to listen to certain radio stations – we used to call them jukeboxes in the past – that present an aesthetic that’s so remote from the lives and loves of our people. The disc jockeys – because I cannot call them anything else – outdo one another in aping pseudo-African-American accents or gangsta slang. They have no idea of the struggles of those self-same Americans to preserve their African roots after being kidnapped and sold off as slaves in the plantations. Malcolm X has commented on the basis of spirituals like “I couldn’t hear nobody pray”.

He had read in some books where it was said that some of the slave mothers would try to teach the ancestral language of Africa to their child who’d be off in another field somewhere but within earshot. They themselves would be praying and they’d pray in a loud voice, and in their own language. The child in the distant field would hear his mother’s voice, and he’d learn how to pray in the same way; and in learning how to pray, he’d pick up on some of the language.

By language here I don’t mean any of the official languages of our democracy but the inner, unquantifiable language of commitment, of criticism and self-criticism; the language of love and defence of all the things we hold sacred and dear; an adherence to the values that imbued us with the spirit that enabled us to withstand everything and fear nothing. In those days and nights of love and war, we knew how to protect the weak and become the eyes of the unseeing and the tongues of the mute. That consciousness should still stammer in the collective corner of our hearts.

Many thanks.

Did you like this? Share it:

Is the YFM Academy yielding results ?

Posted by radio On May - 28 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS


[by Farai Diza]


The wise always acknowledge that, just like fine wine, the best always mature in time. But just like the best, skills are curved by the best.

Having realised that many “would be” radio personalities were searching the airwaves pastures for that elusive breakthrough without any qualifications or experience, the popular YFM 99.2, exploited that gap and came up with an immense programme that has fuelled change in the industry.

Y academy


The station has always been in line with their ongoing vision to develop and create a platform for fresh young talent which has seen the unearthing of YTKO, DJs Shimza, ZanD and Josi Chave. Many will remember YTKO who sparked huge interest by featuring several high profile local and guest DJ’s.

The Y Academy was successfully launched and coordinated a six month radio and broadcasting internship programme that creates the future stars of South African radio.


The learners are tutored about all the different aspects of radio such as marketing, sales, copy writing, news, technical production, content production, and being the voice behind the mic!

The recruits go through a rigorous selection process and they must be armed with a passion for radio and a degree/ diploma. This is to ensure that only the ripe are plucked into the system.

After going through the learning curve, the graduates are given the opportunity to immerse themselves fully in the world of radio and they enter the much sought radio jungle with a solid knowledge of the inner workings of the machine behind the station.

A large number of the Y Academy graduates have taken their skills to newer heights. Many of them have trotted along the white waters of success and gone on to make names for themselves in radio and media and the station believes that many more stars are being moulded.

YFM has always been known for never playing it safe with anything we do. Our music offering has always been just that. YFM has always been the future for music referencing and again we promise nothing but the heat,” said Digital manager Mervyn Sigamoney.




DJ Shimza


Some of the stars who rose through the academy ranks include Mantsoe (co presented Ankle Tap’s mid morning show), Sol Phenduka (Big Brother Mzansi housemate who also former co presenter of the breakfast show with Mo Flava) and Smash Africa (co presented the Afternoon Drive with Tholi B).

Mantsoe Tsatsi, popularly known as Divas Inc, is also one of the stars who passed through the academy.

In October of 2010, I got a call to join the Y Academy. After the internship, I was one of the four to get hired. A month later I decided to leave, as I was not getting what I wanted. I have always wanted to do the 12-3pm slot. YFM has always been the plan and dream,” she tweaked.





Mantsoe Tsatsi

YFM has in the past been home to some of the country’s best radio personalities such as DJ Fresh, Bad Boy T, Thando Thabethe, Bonang Matheba, Mo Flava, Chilli M, Dineo Ranaka, Tholi B, Rudeboy Paul, Phat Joe, DJ Sbu and the late Khabzela – who is one of the icons who spearheaded awareness of HIV/ AIDS in the South African youth.

Listeners also aired their views about the talent coming from the academy.

The only thing missing on YFM is pure talent like the old YFM. The current generation of DJ’s is more of training and what they learned from the academy. The raw talent to engage and entertain listeners is not there. YFM must be commended for playing good music and giving young unknown people a chance, unlike other stations,” said a listener, Noma Sigola.

Given that feat, surely the results of the academy will start paying dividends once the graduates cut their teeth into the industry

Did you like this? Share it:

[by Farai Diza]

Some radio shows are just epic.

Picture this: Its exactly 15:00hrs and most of the country’s freeways are becoming congested as people make their way back home after a hard day’s work. While texting on the road could prove fatal, tuning into Lesedi FM’s Ba2cada Leine can take you safely home, with his hyped Reya Kubeletsa Afternoon Drive Show.



The afternoon drive time show is powered by Ba2cada, who is a high status presenter, and it is an information packed package with news, fashion, HIV/ AIDS, Teenage Pregnancy/ Crime, Nation Building, Traffic Update, Career Guidance, Campus Corner, Sports Updates, Education, Health, Technology, Business and a whole array of vibey elements.



Ba2cada, born Nyakallo Leine, has risen to radio prominence with his funky 3 – 6pm show code named Reya Kubeletsa which is aired weekdays.

Ba2cada, who describes himself as reserved and shy, aspires to be the greatest presenter ever from his generation and so far, so good!

“My greatest inspiration is to be the greatest radio presenter ever of my generation. Knowing that there are people whose lives are depending on me and who depend on me financially keeps me going,” said Ba2cada who was born and raised in Botshabelo.

“Reya Kubeletsa is a very informative and fun filled show. It’s a very energetic show with a lot of laughter and funny moments. I try by all means to encourage those young people that have given up because i know how frustrating it is not to be working and just chilling in the kasi,” he spoke of his show.

His love for radio bubbled out when he was still a young lad. But he never imagined taking the country by storm, as he is now a household name.

“This radio bug started at a very young age. I remember going to the Bloemfontein show at about 11 years with my parents, i would stand there watching the late Thabang Rampoona doing his thing. But unfortunately i didn’t get to know him personally and I’m trying to keep his legacy on radio. Radio has always been part of my life and I can safely say it’s a dream come true,” he professed.

He still has love for the late Rampoona whom he recently rated among his top 5 radio personalities on his Facebook page. The other four are himself, Thapelo Madumane, Big Boy Moagi and the late Khabzela.

Asked whether he would love to host Ha Reye morning show in the future, the energetic Ba2cada said: “It all depends on the management of Lesedi FM. You see it’s not about Ba2cada, it’s about the station. I’m a team player and can never be bigger than Lesedi FM.”

The avid soccer fan has won many awards that include the Best Afternoon Drive Presenter Award twice in a row – in 2012 and 2013. Besides radio, he runs an events management company and an NGO that holds motivational sessions at schools and prisons.

Did you like this? Share it:

Intra-continental celebrations at Bassline

Posted by radio On May - 26 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Bassline Africa Day Concert traditionally features top South African acts performing alongside some of the continent’s hottest new talent. Whilst the Bassline Africa Day Concert celebrated its 10th anniversary this year, The haunt (Bassline) itself marked its 20th anniversary, making it one of the longest running live music venues in South Africa. The Bassline Africa Day Concert is always a highlight of the year, and 24 th May 2014 was no exception. Hosted by Nicky from Kaya FM, the roster of artists included Smarty (Hip Hop, France/Burkina Faso), Akalé Wubé (Jazz, France/Ethiopia),Vusi Mahlasela (Folk, South Africa), Tumi (Hip Hop, South Africa), Reason (Hip Hop, South Africa), 8 Bars Short (Afro Folk, South Africa) and Yugen Blakrok (Rap, South Africa)


Tumi Molekane

Tumi Molekane









Akalé Wubé

Akalé Wubé



















Vusi Mahlasela

Vusi Mahlasela









Akale Wube

Akale Wube

Did you like this? Share it:

Fifa World Cup: Mosia The Man To Beat

Posted by radio On May - 22 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS


[by Farai Diza]

His sultry voice confidently oozes out of the radio speakers as he dishes out the latest football news armed with an oak barrel of amazing talent.


“This is Brazil 2014, not shibobo 1998!”


“When soccer maestro Sibusiso Vilakazi – Bidvest Wits Captain – cleaned up the awards ceremony during Sunday’s Absa PSL Soccer Star of the Year Awards, all eyes were on him as he gloated in his magical moment like a butterfly on a royalty rose. He thanked God for his achievements.”


One person who has the privilege of living that dream everyday is none other than Power FM disc Jockey Thabiso Mosia who has turned radio into an amazing sporting galaxy of fun. It’s funny to imagine that sports radio’s biggest thing kicked off his career as a mere ZAR chasing clerk at a betting firm before shifting base to a sports shop. A retail sports shop that is. Yeah were you buy your favourite rugby and sports shirts.

Thabiso mosia


Code named “Tracksuit” as his Twitter handle, Mosia is the main man to tune into this winter as far as the 2014 FIFA World Cup is concerned as he is well versed with the beautiful game. His analytical skills will undoubtedly arouse interest during football’s biggest debacle that has attracted 32 nations in the South American nation of Brazil.

Forget that Bafana Bafana stars will be watching the action in their TV rooms just like all of us.


The Power Breakfast show sports anchor has established a name for himself just like his father – the famous Stan Mosia who once described the Soweto Derby as the greatest contest on earth.


As lemon tingles the tongue without a shot of gin, Mosia might have a SeSotho name and surname but he hails from Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape where he grew up speaking Xhosa.


According to the Power FM website, the robust Mosia got his major radio breakthrough in 2007 at Kaya FM when he was assigned to compile the stations sports bulletin. He did it with such enthusiasm that even the shows anchors mentioned him during live transmission of the show. Talk of a caddie getting all the credit after a grand tour glory!


Like a horse that trots from turf to turf gaining glory, he joined eNews as a sports writer before returning to Kaya FM the following year as a sports presenter and producer of the sports show where he got his “Tracksuit” nickname.


Mosia joined the “cloud trotting” Power FM as a sports presenter where he has curved a niche for himself amongst veteran heavyweights such as Robert Marawa.


His rosy career has been an inspiration to many asunder and he undoubtedly has had the nation tuning into Power FM Breakfast show for an unbelievable dosage of sports.

But Mosia has stood his ground and garnished the radio industry as one of the greatest names ever to grace the South African airwaves.


Did you like this? Share it:

Film works that immortalised radio

Posted by radio On May - 21 - 2014 Comments Off on Film works that immortalised radio

[by Kagiso Mnisi]

Radio, ever the companion to all in sundry be it the weary or the industrious soul, has had some fine moments on screen. Film has celebrated radio by giving the movie going crowd the raging on – air personalities, cut throat sensibilities of station executives and even risque endeavours  of pirate radio. Radiobiz lists some of the movies that have paid homage to this wondrous and ethereal medium.


1. Amandla! A Revolution In Four Part Harmony


Set in a radio studio with then Rudeboy Paul of YFM as host to some of the most spirited discussions on struggle songs this side of the earth. In the film, South African musicians,playwrights, poets and activists recall the struggle against apartheid from the 1940s to the 1990s that stripped black citizens of South Africa of basic human rights, and the important role that music played in that struggle.



The documentary uses a mixture of interviews, musical performances and historical film footage. Among the South Africans who take part are Miriam Makeba,Abdullah Ibrahim, Hugh Masekela, Vusi Mahlasela and others.


2. The Boat That rocked



The movie tells the story of the fictitious pirate radio station “Radio Rock” and its crew of eclectic disc jockeys, who broadcast rock and pop music to the United Kingdom from a ship anchored in the North Sea while the British government endeavours to shut them down.




The movie follows seventeen year-old Carl (Tom Sturridge), who after expulsion from school, gets sent to stay with his godfather Quentin (Bill Nighy), who runs the station “Radio Rock” anchored in the North Sea. The eclectic crew of disc jockeysand staffers, led by the brash American DJ “The Count” (Philip Seymour Hoffman), quickly accept Carl as one of their own.


3. Talk To Me

Talk To me

Talk To Me is a 2007 biographical film about Washington, D.C. radio personality Ralph “Petey” Greene, an ex-con who became a popular talk show host and community activist, and Dewey Hughes, his friend and manager.



The movie spans the time period May 1966 to January 1984, ending with the late Greene’s memorial service.


4. Pump Up The Volume



Mark Hunter (Slater), a high school student in a sleepy suburb of Phoenix, Arizona, starts an FM pirate radio station that broadcasts from the basement of his parents’ house. Mark is a loner, an outsider, whose only outlet for his teenage angst and aggression is his unauthorized radio station. By day, Mark is seen as a loner, hardly talking to anyone around him; by night, he expresses his outsider views about what is wrong with American society. When he speaks his mind about what is going on at his school and in the community, more and more of his fellow students tune in to hear his show.


Did you like this? Share it:

Is Online Radio Delivering In SA ?

Posted by radio On May - 19 - 2014 Comments Off on Is Online Radio Delivering In SA ?


[By :Farai Diza]


The spheres of technological advancements have influenced change in most communication modes. Reality has not spared radio either as the airwaves have shifted from frequency modulation to the World Wide Web through the emergence of online radio.

online radio image


The South African radio industry has greatly evolved since independence as it has managed to light up homes with entertainment and education in a permeated fabric society that is now devoted to keeping tabs with “goings on”.


In spite of all the attention hovering above new innovations such as cable television, smart internet television and Wi-Fi enabled TV; South Africans have maintained their faith in online radio as they seek to catch up with the “Kardishans”.


Smartphone and tablets, powered by Wi-Fi which cuts data costs, have opened up a leeway of possibilities and experts have predicted that online radio is about to surpass FM/AM. The percentage of South Africans who listen to radio on the internet is closing in on the percentage of those who tune into traditional platforms.


The advantage of online radio is that streaming is available anywhere in the world, where there is internet connectivity and it eliminates the use of transponders.


Most local radio stations are now airing online and live audio streaming for most stations is provided by the AntFarm and Net Dynamix. The results have borne testimony that the SA online radio stream is surely reaching wider audiences as far as Zimbabwe, Australia, UK, USA, and Nigeria.


While these stations have gone live on the internet and quickly gaining stream, common problems associated with listening to online radio in South Africa include connection errors and congestion on the internet.


Enter 2014 – Gareth Cliff and his Cliff Central crew have redefined the art of online radio as they are now broadcasting their popular breakfast show on the WeChat application through live streaming. Cliff has already reiterated that he wants to use the internet to turn radio in South Africa on its head.


Internet radio is a natural evolution and my audience is generally tech savvy. I think the timing here is very important. It is inevitable that the cost of data will come down. Radio is a lot more real than TV,” he told TechCentral.


The advantage of AM/ FM is that it is readily available and provided at no extra cost since it is funded with advertisements. The future is still unclear on the internet radio front with most companies now considering expanding internet radio in the commuter experience. Drawbacks have been emanated from the fact that streaming audio is dependent on the internet connection which is predominantly broadband, Wi-Fi, and 3G/ 4G.


That said, the advancements of radio cannot be ignored with all three categories – public, commercial and community broadcasting services scaling the perimeters of success on the online platform. These broadcasting services have kept South Africans all over the world leaping on their feet with a diversified range of programmes that include home grown sport, radio drama’s, news, music, magazine programmes, and with the elections drawing nearer, the importance of current affairs on radio is a stroke above par.


Did you like this? Share it:

Gulubele’s sonic adventures at Radio 2000

Posted by radio On May - 19 - 2014 Comments Off on Gulubele’s sonic adventures at Radio 2000


By Philani Dlamini

Being a radio technical producer, is a job that some may think is unattainable but according to Mxolisi Gulubele, who is also known as Blaq at 2000FM, if you work hard enough you can land the coveted gig. Gulubele is a staunch believer in radio’s ability to shape the perceptions society. As a producer at 2000 FM, Mxolisi Gulubele does all the image related duties for the station, this encompasses overseeing Radio 2000’s sonic images and to set it apart from other stations. Philani Dlamini speaks to him about his long and adventurous journey in radio land.

MXO_RADIO 2000_1


How is your typical day at Radio 2000 ?

My typical day starts at 8am. I start my day by going through my e-mails and responding to urgent ones. I am responsible for creating the roster, schedule bookings for the DJs so we can do housekeeping for their shows. I also check which shows require imaging and promotional material. The promotional material is produced from the previous shows. Most of my days are flexible. I constantly liaise with marketing and programming for scripts to produce clients’ promos and adverts. On Tuesdays I attend an operational meeting where the station’s operational requirements for the week are outlined.



How long have you been involved in radio?


I have been involved in radio for some time now, I started working for Channel Africa in 1996 then after two years, I went to join The Voice of Soweto,where I presented a show called ‘The Flip side of Things’, I was also the sound engineer at this station, where I got a lifetime opportunity to be involved in different crafts of radio, that was also good back then, I worked with different young people who were interested in the world of radio and now some off which are well know names. After Voice of Soweto was liquidated I left radio temporarily before returning to the medium in 2002 when I was offered the position of Head: Sound Engineer for Trans Africa Radio, an African syndicated station.


I then joined Kaya Family in March 2003 as a technical producer and drove the desk for the great Bob Mabena’s weekday breakfast show. I later then joined SABC radio station Metro FM as technical producer in 2006. I did a number of things at metro FM such as voice overs and imaging the station. While working for the station I worked with likes of BadboyT, Azania Ndoro,Glen Lewis and many more. I was also responsible for training a number of young upcoming talent some of which are still within the station. I left Metro FM in 2010 and joined Vodacom Radio as a presenter of the afternoon drive and was concurrently acting as a Station Producer at Y FM. I came back to SABC in 2012 to join 2000FM. In 2014 at the 20th MTN radio awards I was nominated as a finalist in the category for sound imaging PBS.


My world is a world of sound. I take your everyday sounds and sculpt them into sonic messages that differentiate my station from other stations. 2000FM is an exciting venture for me because we are a small station competing with the likes of Metro FM and other big stations. These are exciting times at 2000 FM as we are creating a giant. If the big guns don’t watch out, we will overtake them soon. We have a product that can compete anywhere with anyone.



About the growth of radio in this country


After having on different mediums of radio for some time, I believe radio is growing everyday.

Look today, we have a new media, which when we started on radio, there was no new media but these days we are able to listen to the internet radio, today SABC radio stations all have internet streaming audio which really show how radio has grown over the years.



How does it feel working with 2000 FM presenters?


Working for the station, I must say, it is one the best decision ever in my life, most of the people that I work with here are so talented and amazing. I work with legends such as Just Ice, David Mashabela, Bertha Charuma and Ernest Pillay who recently won the Drive Time Experience at the MTN Radio Awards.

What is good about these presenters is that they know what is expected from you. Recently the station has been experiencing such a growth from different regions in this country.



On the future of Radio 2000


I believe the station is growing tremendously; I am very impressed to see the young blood that is coming to the SABC radio over the years. Right now, we have presenters such as Tsheko Mosito and Lindo Zici and a number of talented producers who are I believe are taking the station to another level.

Did you like this? Share it:

MFM’s contemporary appeal : Part 2

Posted by radio On May - 16 - 2014 Comments Off on MFM’s contemporary appeal : Part 2
MFM's Charita van der Berg charges on forth with her world beater attitude 
on the mechanics of radio and the wish for a robust discussion 
with Jeremy Maggs and John Berks


Radiobiz : What changes would you make in the 
radio landscape if you were the Minister of 
Charita : As the Station Manager of a campus station,
 I understand the limits of money, so I’d definitely 
contribute more to campus-and community
driven stations.

Radiobiz : What advice would you like to give the incoming minister of Communication?
Charita : Take the time to get to know the different community and campus stations 
our country has as these are the people who you’ll see at bigger stations or in media in a few years.

Radiobiz : What advice would you give to people wanting to enter the industry/radio?
Charita : Never give up. It’s a tough industry to be in and people will discourage you. 
You need passion in order to make a career in this industry. 

Radiobiz : What is the changing role do you think radio plays in SA?
Charita : Different stations will have different changing roles. Bush Radio will be seen
by people who weren’t free before 1994 as a station who offered a voice where there wasn’t one for instance. 
Radio in South Africa as a whole should represent the freedom of speech. 

Radiobiz : Apart from your own radio station, which radio station do you listen to and why?
Charita : I listen to other community stations and then commercial stations like Kfm, 5fm, Heart fm 
and Goodhope fm to get an idea what other stations are doing compared to what our station is currently doing.

Radiobiz :What is the latest book you are reading?
Charita : The Book Thief

Radiobiz :What is the latest movie seen lately?
Charita : I’m not a big movie watcher, but the latest movie I’ve seen is Delivery Man

Radiobiz : Did you upbringing play any role in you being on radio?
Charita : Definitely. We listened to the radio every day in the car and I had a radio alarm, 
so I literally woke up listening to the radio and I have always wanted to work in the media

Radiobiz : What influences your thinking? Who would you invited to a radio-roundtable discussion and why?
Charita : My thinking is influenced by unique concepts and chatting to people who have
knowledge of the industry. John Berks would definitely be the first person on my list. I’d love to tap into the 
wealth of knowledge he has. Another person I’d like is Jeremy Maggs for the versatility he has in media, 
albeit the television or radio industry.

Radiobiz : What are some of the controversial topics and the trending topics 
that we need to engage in on radio?
Charita : Definitely the crime that is currently taking place and becoming worse. 
It’s unfathomable that we are one of the countries with the highest rape number in the world.
People need to be educated that this should not be acceptable. Another thing would be to talk about all the corruption allegations against important members of the South African society.

Radiobiz : What would you like to ask ICASA and advise you would give ICASA?
Charita : I work closely with ICASA on an almost daily basis and I have a lot of respect for the work they do. 
I have a compliance officer that I go to with questions.

Radiobiz :So, what does the future hold with you and radio.. what should we be looking out for?
Charita : The immediate future is driving MFM 92.6 to far bigger heights, striving to make it 
the biggest learning platform in radio, while sending out some of the best talent into the industry. 
For myself personally…you’ll need to watch this space

Did you like this? Share it:

Makhosi Khoza the oracle of radio

Posted by radio On May - 16 - 2014 Comments Off on Makhosi Khoza the oracle of radio

By Kgomotso Moncho

Talking to Makhosi Khoza is like talking to the oracle of radio – he has the business and aesthetic of radio dripping out the pores of his fingers. With two decades of experience in the industry, he runs an academy that trains people who want to be on radio, he has taught radio at Boston Media House and is currently penning a book on his life in radio.

Makhosi Khoza_edit


He refers to radio as a magical medium, something that intrigued him in his childhood in Swaziland. His bedroom was next to his parents’ and almost every night his dad would knock on his door requesting that he decrease the volume on his radio.


Perhaps the magic of the medium can be traced in the ironies of his story. For someone who is eloquent, funny and charming, he describes himself as a shy guy. As one of the likeable and respected personalities on radio today, his dream was never to be on air.




He explains, “I used to be extremely shy and those who know me well will tell you I am. But radio has the ability to unearth that which is beneath. It calls on you to rise to the stage when it is your time to shine. I always tell my students that radio found me. So when people say, ‘I want to be on radio,’ I don’t know what that feels like, because it wasn’t my ambition.”


His ambition was to be a pilot. But his father advised him to go for a course that would give him a career to fall back on. So he went for a Bachelor’s degree in Science which he never finished because his heart was not in it. He later decided to study law and he did it in his mom’s hometown, Durban at the now University of Kwa Zulu Natal (UKZN). And that’s how he got introduced to Campus radio.


It broadcast into the dining halls of the university during breakfast, lunch and supper. With cassettes, a few CDs and records I went in there just to mess around. But I got badgered by people to give it a try and I enjoyed it. I started commercial radio in 1992 at home when I joined the English service of Radio Swaziland (SBIS), in December standing in for some presenters who were on leave. I joined Durban’s Capital Radio between 1994 and 1996 and I was with it until it closed down. I was jobless for a year until I joined East Coast Radio (ECR) in 1997,” Khoza shares.


He was one of the first wave of black jockeys on white radio stations and he made history at ECR as the first black DJ on a weekday slot and as the first black DJ doing the breakfast show. The transformation was good, but it wasn’t always smooth sailing Khoza points out. “The playlist was not changed for you. When you played a Brenda Fassie song, you’d get an email questioning that. I come from that school,” he says.


While at ECR he got to do some work for BBC Radio in Berkshire in a show that became a link between South Africa and the UK. In 2006 he became Programmes Manager at Gagasi FM when it launched, a time he calls “a lovely two year honeymoon,” before doing a short stint on Radio 2000 in 2008.
He was supposed to be groomed to be programmes manager for Radio 2000, but when that did not happen, he went back to Gagasi and then re-joined ECR which is easily his home.


He now hosts the 9 am- 12 midday slot on ECR. Talking about the fundamentals of radio, it becomes important to note that radio has evolved from what it was when he started. It is now finding its place in the current digital revolution and settling in the social media age.
“People have predicted the death of radio for a long time, but it is still here. There is still something magical about the human voice. Radio has evolved, but it is still important to keep the listener in mind.


The main reason I came back to Durban was to plough back to the industry that made me,” says Khoza.
“It’s interesting that a lot of people are attracted to the glamour of radio. And there’s a misconception that you only have to be behind the mic when they’re a myriad of things to do. When I started my academy in radio training I found that schools training people on radio were run by people who were not on radio. Most people don’t know what their core skill is and radio can brainwash you to look up to and mimic other people instead of being you. If you are to be behind the mic, you need great communication skills and personality,” he says.


Veteran radio personality, Bob Mabena recently lamented on the influx of “pretty faces with an audience” coming into the radio industry and voiced his disappointment on how low the industry standard has dropped. His generation will tell you of the rigorous training they got before they even went behind the mic, back then.


Khoza adds, “The commerce of radio requires that you live and die by numbers. Because of this, people parachute celebrities into the industry. This dilutes the art form of radio. It has become a lot easier to get into radio today with the emergence of retail radio. People accept mediocrity because that is what they’re being fed and the vicious cycle continues. The reason for my radio school is to groom presenters who would be good community radio presenters that can be feeders to commercial


So what conversations do we need to be having about radio right now?
“The health of radio depends on who you speak to. Business people will tell you about numbers and purists will tell you about content. The science and art of radio depend on policy. The exclusivity that radio used to have is no more, we have to come up with new angles. So the conversation needs to be with the listener, about what the listener wants. There are exciting times ahead. I’m looking forward to satellite radio in my car. The bandwidth and cost is still restrictive in South Africa. I want to get to a point where community radio doesn’t sound like ‘community radio.’ I love what Cliff Central is doing, but DJ Sbu did that a few years ago on Soweto TV. I wish there’d be more Gareth Cliffs and Linda Sibiyas on radio.


Then we could restore the essence of radio – which is essentially about touching someone’s life – turning an ordinary day into an extraordinary one,” Khoza says.  His book, tracing his 21 years in radio will include anecdotes on his journey and accidents with the listener together with many other insights. Watch the space for details on the book tour. He ends the interview with a poignant memory.


“The hardest thing I ever did was doing a show in the morning when my dad died the previous day. There’s no bad mood on radio. Your emotion colours people’s day.”

Did you like this? Share it:

RSG wins again at Afrikaans media awards

Last Friday, the annual ATKV (Afrikaanse Taal en Kultuur Vereniging) media awards were presented at the stylish Katy’s Palace Bar […]

Heart FM brings a known voice to Mid-Morning Show

 Heart FM makes a change to its mid-morning show that’s certain to be well received. The station is moving one of Cape […]

SAfm announces new line-up

SAfm remains a radio station with the largest footprint in South Africa, and it is important to refresh, strengthen and […]

The listeners have voted – Liberty Radio Awards

Which is the most loved Radio Station in South Africa in 2018? All will be revealed on Saturday 14 April […]