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SAMRO’s new music awards initiative is taking the world by storm, celebrating South African music that truly goes beyond borders to make waves on the international stage. To add to the excitement SAMRO has now released the official categories

Taking place on 28 June 2013, these awards celebrate local music that has enjoyed success and recognition in countries outside of our borders. The organisers have now announced the final list of categories in which SAMRO members may submit their entries, and there are a number of interesting surprises on the list. 

 

Wawela is a Zulu word meaning “Go Beyond” and by all accounts the SAMRO has taken the word to heart to create something new for the South African music industry. The categories reflect the uniqueness of the event, with many of the awards looking beyond just commercial success in rewarding musicians for their international achievements. A host of categories offer musicians the opportunity to receive recognition for their music which has been showcased in many different ways internationally. 

 

The categories have been divided into three broad groups namely; Standard Awards, Special Awards, and Statistical Awards. Standard Awards are those categories in which SAMRO members may submit their works for consideration. Special Awards are those categories that are determined solely by the nomination of the judging panel. The Statistical Award category is judged using SAMRO’s statistical data regarding each work’s performance therefore no submission is necessary in this category. 

 

 Perhaps most encouraging is the fact that many of the awards are not judged merely on commercial success, with many categories taking into account the artistic merit of each musical work and how each work complements the medium in which it is featured. For example, in the category, Best Sound Track in a Feature Film or Theatric Documentary, judges will be scrutinizing how well the music enhances the visual content and the emotional impact achieved by the music in relation to the visuals. While the Best song or composition in a television commercial category will be judged on the music’s ability to enhance the visual content and complement the tone and feel of the commercial. 

 

This means there are many opportunities for music to shine, regardless of the level of exposure it received abroad. Here are all the categories of the inaugural Wawela Music Awards, brought to you by SAMRO. 

 

Standard Awards 

Best sound track in a Feature Film or Theatric Documentary

Best song or composition in a television production

Best song or composition in a television commercial

Best song or composition in a radio commercial

Best creative album of the year

International hit song of the Year (outside SA)

Songwriter of the Year

Best South African Duo/Group

Best Female Artist & composer/co-composer

Best Male Artist & composer/co-composer 

 

Special Awards 

Lifetime Achievement Award

Breaking through the Borders / Frontier Award

Publisher of the Year

Prolific Catalogue of Works Award

 

Statistical Awards 

SAMRO Award for Broadcast and Live Performances

WAWELA Award for Best Selling song via Digital & Online 

 

There is no fee to enter, but only SAMRO members may participate in the inaugural Wawela Music Awards. Members can find out more by visiting www.wawelamusicawards.co.za. There is an online submission feature that allows members to enter categories, upload their music and enter quickly and easily using their SAMRO account numbers. Entries close on 02 April 2013. 

For more information please call 011 712 – 8505 or email:info@wawela.co.za 

For media related Queries please call 011 788 7632/31 or email: vanessa@jtcomms.co.za

 

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The eagerly awaited MTN South African Music Awards (MTN SAMA 19) Nominations Announcement will be held on Wednesday, 20 March at The Turbine Hall in Newtown with the main awards themselves taking place at Sun City on the 10th and 11th May.  And this year promises to be the most digitally connected awards ever.

 

The music industry will be holding its collective breath on Wednesday 20 March when it will be revealed who the nominees are that have made it through to the 19th Annual MTN South African Music Awards (MTN SAMA 19).   

The announcement will be streamed live and in real time on mobile (www.mtnsamatv.mobi) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/samusicawards).  And then when celebrations begin that night at the official nominee party, fans will be able to watch interviews with their favourite artists LIVE on the Y’ello Carpet on their mobile phones and online.  

 

Furthermore, clips will be packaged and uploaded as Video on Demand content post the events on the 20th March, so if you do not catch the LIVE streams you can still watch all the action on the mobisite (www.mtnsamatv.mobi) and on the official MTN SAMA You Tube Channel (www.youtube.com/samusicawards).

“After a fantastic year in South African music, the 19th Annual MTN South African Music Awards are sure to leave millions of people on the edge of their seats, starting with the nominations event on March 20. There will be shock, awe and surprises and we cannot wait for the weekend of 10 – 11 May 2012 at the Sun City Superbowl”, added MTN SAMA CEO Nhlanhla Sibisi.

 

The MTN South African Music Awards exist to recognize accomplishments in the South African recording industry and will be broadcast live to millions of viewers on the country’s favourite channel, SABC 1 on Saturday, 11 May.

 

Tickets for this prestigious event are available from Computicket. Please visit the official website for further details – http://samusicawards.co.za

The full list of categories for the 19th Annual MTN South African Music Awards are:

TOP 5 CATEGORIES

  • Album of the Year
  • Duo or Group of the Year
  • Female Artist of the Year
  • Male Artist of the Year
  • Newcomer of the Year

ALBUM GENRE SUPER CATEGORIES

  • Best Rock Album
  • Best Pop Album
  • Best Adult Contemporary Album
  • Best Kontemporêre Musiekalbum
  • Best African Adult Album
  • Best Alternative Album
  • Best Kiddies Album
  • Best R&B / Soul / Reggae Album
  • Best Rap Album
  • Best Kwaito Album
  • Best Dance Album
  • Best Traditional Faith Music Album
  • Best Contemporary Faith Music Album
  • Best Traditional Album
  • Best Maskandi Album
  • Best Jazz Album
  • Best Classic & Instrumental Album

OTHER

  • Best Live DVD

SPECIAL AWARDS

  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • International Achievement Awards
  • Best Selling Album
  • Best Selling DVD
  • Best Collaboration

MTN BEST SELLING MOBILE MUSIC DOWNLOAD

  • Best Selling True-Tone
  • Best Selling Ring-Back-Tone
  • Best Selling Full-Track Download

TECHNICAL CATEGORIES

  • Best Music Video of the Year
  • Best Producer
  • Best Engineer
  • Remix of the Year

PUBLIC VOTE CATEGORY

  • Record of the Year

SAMPRA AWARD

Highest Airplay of the Year

 

[Source: SAMA Awards]

 

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When praises go up, blessings do come down indeed; this becomes evident as the mighty MTN Joyous Celebration return for their 17th season with a fittingly titled tour: The GRATEFUL Tour.

This award-winning gospel ensemble will ascend the stage at the Big Top Arena in Carnival City to launch their national tour. The MTN Joyous celebration 17 tour kicks off on Friday 29 March, Saturday 30 March and Sunday 31 March 2013. These performances will coincide with the launch and release of the Joyous 17 CD and DVD also titled “Grateful,” recorded live in Johannesburg.

 

“For the past 17 years, there has been a presiding force that has kept this ensemble alive and strong. God’s mercy, blessings and favour have seen us through the storms and we’d be remiss to carry on, unwittingly, without acknowledging His love for us. This album and tour is our special tribute to Him. We simply give thanks to Him,” says Lindelani Mkhize, co-founder.

MTN Joyous Celebration has plenty of reasons to be GRATEFUL for. In July 2012 the ensemble walked away with three awards at the African Gospel Music Awards held in London, this after they scooped up a number of trophies in their genre at the South African Music Awards in March 2012. Apart from winning prestigious awards, this gospel outfit also enjoys a very strong and loyal fan base throughout South Africa, the Continent and the Diaspora.

 

“Our fans are everything to us. Without them, there is no Joyous Celebration. So in essence, Joyous 17 is also our token of appreciation for the support they have shown us over the years and the journey they’ve taken with us since the very first album,” says Jabu Hlongwane, co-founder. Having sold-out all concert tickets and filled up venues during the Joyous 16 national tour, MTN Joyous Celebration reached platinum status from the sales of their 16th album, an achievement for which Sony BMG presented them with an award.

 

Another nod the ensemble received from Sony Music was for a record-breaking sale of 2.8 million copies since Joyous 1 right through to Joyous 16, a first and new record for a gospel concept in South Africa. “Our success is due to a number of reasons; amongst those are the artists who’ve been with us, the great musicians and singers and the fans who have contributed significantly to the success of the Joyous Celebration concept. To you, we are eternally GRATEFUL,” he adds.

 

Tickets for the concert are priced between R150 and R300 each and can be booked via Computicket or any Shoprite/Checkers outlet. All shows start at 19h30 for all three nights.

 

[Source: Joyous Celebration]

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Breathe Sunshine Music Conference

Posted by radio On March - 13 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

The African music industry is one of the fastest growing in the world, yet the continent still lacks the skills and established network of international counterparts. To address these challenges and put Cape Town on the map as a global music hub for African music, the inaugural Breathe Sunshine African Music conference will run from 1-2 April 2013 in Cape Town.

 

At City Hall in the centre of Cape Town, the conference takes place during the same week as the internationally renowned Cape Town International Jazz Festival  and is therefore the perfect opportunity to engage and experience a week of the African entertainment industry through these two world-class events.

 

Says conference founder Trenton Birch of Black Mango, “We have deliberately kept the cost of the conference low as we want to attract a diverse audience from the local community as well as national visitors and many from other African countries, plus European and American delegates who are working with African music in their respective territories.”

 

“Our aim is to make the conference inclusive by engaging representatives from all genres of music and cultural backgrounds. We have been working with an incredible pan-African steering committee who have been advising and contributing to the content and direction of the conference.”

 

The diverse steering committee includes representatives from Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique and Senegal as well as local names such as Roach Roth of African Dope, Mthokozisi Khathi aka DJ Tira of Afrotainment and Suga from Heart FM. Involved in the conference from an international perspective are Oliver Barnett of Putamayo Music (UK), Colin Gayle of Billboard Africa (US) and Volker May of International Music Managers Forum Europe (Germany), as well as South African artists Jack Parow, Francois van Coke, Black Coffee, Euphonik, music journalist Evan Milton and Duncan Ringrose of sShadoworks and Assembly and Brian Little of Seed Experiences to name a few.

 

The Breathe Sunshine African Music conference aims to promote the sharing of information between all involved in the African music community through workshops, panel discussions, presentations and networking. The conference will work on multiple levels ensuring each attendee can maximize their experience with artist empowerment workshops for people new to the industry and an executive networking lounge for music business people to have high level conversations. There will also be an exhibition space and a concert showcasing African talent.

 

The vision is to build a successful and reputable African music industry conference through facilitating knowledge sharing and fostering a spirit of collaboration by empowering both artists and industry across borders.

 

[Issued by: Redflag]

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Music Exchange, South Africa’s 3rd Independent Music Conference that gets everyone in the music industry talking, is set to take place from 21-22 March, with an additional day confirmed for the 23 March 2013 for workshops (see list below for more details on workshops).

The most influential names in the music industry have signed up to impart and share their knowledge and expertise at this year’s Music Conference 

Some of the Panelists and Artists to look out for are:

Benjy Mudie A&R for Universal Music and Idols mentor, Rashid Lombard, founder of Cape Town Jazz Festival, internationally acclaimed artist Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse, Music label Ghetto Ruff CEO Lance Stehr, renowned producer Gabi Le Roux, chief editor for Rolling Stone SA Magazine Miles Keylock.

 

Thebe Ikalafeng, ( Ikalafeng is vice-chairman of the Brand Council of South Africa and a non-executive director of Mercantile Bank Holdings, Brand South Africa, WWF South Africa (WorldWideFund for Nature to name a few),  as well as CEO of Brandsrock Mike Joubert   and CEO of SAMRO  Nick Motstate ,  Nick Matzukis  the renowned  Music Attorney is launching his new book at the conference entitled ” South African Music Law, Contracts and Business” – 2013 (third) edition”  as well as Radio personality  Ian Bredenkamp from KFM to name but a few, are all speaking at the conference .

 

Artists who are speaking at the Conference include :Arno Carstens, R J Benjamin ,Chad Saaiman ,  Jimmy Nevis, Dubmasta China ,  Andrew McPherson  ,Mark Haze ,The Rudimentals , REBURN , Shadowclub , 7th Son , Goodnight Wembly, Dino Michael , DJ Da Capo. International producer and record label owner Charles Webster who produces luminaries such as Black Coffee, Bucie, MiCasa,Tracy Thorn (Everything But The Girl/Massive Attack) , Cathy Batistessa, Vanessa Daou, Wendy and Lisa and Robert Owens to name a few)

 

Delegates will hear about the future of music from the “who’s who” of the music industry. All panelists and speakers will make themselves available for the full two days. Delegates will move into focused presentations on a number of topics and these will be followed by panel discussions with experts in each field.

Delegates are encouraged to submit their demos via the Soundcloud link on the website.5 to 10 bands /Artists / DJ’s and Music Professionals will be selected and given the opportunity to showcase their talent at the showcase evening at the end of Day 1. Attendance for the Showcase evening will be free to delegates.

A number of key International Music Aficionados will also be present…”Speakers will be published shortly.

Please see website for a full list of Artists and Panelists and for further details on Topics to be discussed at this year’s 2013 Music Conference. www.musicexchange.co.za

Music Exchange Offering:

A 2 day ticket purchased for Music Exchange at R499 will include the following:

 

1. Catering for                                      21, 22 and 23 March 2013

2. Showcase Evening on the                  21 March 2013

3. Concert Evening on the                     22 March 2013

4. Workshops –                                    23rd March as follows:

 

  • ADMT – African Dance & Music Technology – An interactive DJ interactive workshop which will include how to DJ/ production / remixing / mastering and running label etc.

 

  • With Dino Michael and Charles Websterwho is producing luminaries such as Black Coffee, Bucie, MiCasa,Tracy Thorn (everything but the girl/massive attack) , Cathy Batistessa, Vanessa Daou, Wendy and Lisa and Robert Owens to name a few!!!!) The very talented SA Producer & DJ Da Capowill also be part of this interactive workshop

 

  • The Score – Music database and Music Portal for Artists – “How to use this database to List Your Gig Guide” and other effective tools.

 

  • Contracts and Advise Legal  – Ankia Pelser

 

  • Web development  and Sugaman.Org  – Brian Currin

 

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Zooming in on Donald

Posted by radio On March - 1 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

[By: Helen Phushela]

“The Love I know I Deserve” the loud screams of people singing along to Donald’s I Deserve single. The song has held its own on the charts since its release last year February. For those who live under a rock, Donald Moatshe is the new R&B hype master, who has all women and men across the age difference singing along to his music. He is one of Mzansi’s best talent yet, he is from Northam just outside Rustenburg. Where he went to St Dominic Primary and then became a University of Johannesburg student. Donald burst onto the music scene with his biggest single I Deserve (The love I know I deserve). This gave him the right ladder to super stardom, lending him a national anthem.

Image by:salyrix.co.za

  

Donald Moatshe has been in the music industry for 8 years, unnoticed he has written songs for the likes of Kelly Khumalo and Kwela Tebza. His first album was titled Just Donald, and was released in 2009 under DJ Cleo’s Will of Steel Productions (WOS). Donald has since left WOS to start his own label, D-Exclusive in 2011. “I took a long time thinking about it and made a life changing decision so that I could grow” said Donald. In 2012 he released his second album Train of Love, which has the track “I Deserve” a chart topping lead single.

 

Donald started working on his second album in 2011; he wanted to target a younger crowd so he made a dance album. As a song writer and vocalist this didn’t come as a problem. On the album he worked with Chris J. from Ghana. The hit-single I Deserve came from a personal experience that the artist went through after an accident he survived in August 2011. He did not receive support from his girlfriend and says that the album is like a diary for him as it talks about how he crawled so that he can walk again. “It took me literally 30 minutes to write those lyrics and verse”. At that very moment he knew that was a song he just had to share with South Africa; little did he know that it would become this big. The song’s video received airplay from Channel O, Live Amp and MTV; it now sits at 109,017 and ‘In Denial’ with 98,112 views on YouTube.

 

I Deserve reached Top 10 on the Media Guide charts. Also securing first place on RAMs Top 100 & Top 40 charts. Donald says that the song Denial explains how it feels to get into a new relationship with old wound. “You sort of hold back and your partner can feel it when you not fully committed to them.” After six nominations at the Metro FM awards, Donald took home best produced album and best styled artist/group awards. He has managed to keep a slick clean cut look to keep his female fans going gaga. In an emotional thank you speech Donald thanked his fans and announced his album hitting the gold mark in sales. When listening to the 12 track album one can’t help but bob their head and dance to tracks such as Dance with me. 

 

He has gone through so much to produce this album and got positive feedback. “I’m over whelmed by all these good things that are happening to me. It doesn’t matter how bad the situation is, you can make a comeback.” He says he still believes in love now more than ever and it will only happen when it should.

 

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Narrowcasting: Widening the royalty net

Posted by radio On February - 27 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Keitumetse Setshedi, SAMRO’s Broadcasting and Online Transmissions Manager, and Xolani Zulu, Accounts Executive for Mechanical Rights at SAMRO, explain some of the ins and outs of narrowcasting – a potential additional revenue stream for music creators and an excellent branding tool for music users. 

What is narrowcasting?

This form of television or radio broadcasting is defined as the transmission of content to a certain targeted section of the public – such as the music you hear in the supermarket or at the shopping mall.  Whereas broadcasting is aimed at a larger, general audience, narrowcasting is, as its name implies, geared towards a smaller, defined niche audience. 

How is the narrowcasting signal transmitted?

It is usually transmitted via satellite or the internet to a restricted audience, not to the general public. 

Is a broadcasting licence required to narrowcast?

Such in-store or in-house radio stations do not require an ICASA licence. But a business or entity does need to obtain a music usage licence from SAMRO, authorising them to narrowcast SAMRO members’ music. A licence to use or play music in public is required by law, in terms of the South African Copyright Act.

Obtaining a SAMRO licence to narrowcast will help ensure that the Performing Rights royalties that accrue from the public use of the musical works will be channelled to the SAMRO members who created them.  

What are some examples of narrowcasters?

A narrowcaster can be used for any venue. The most common examples are in-store radio stations like Mr Price’s Red Cap Radio, but even hospitals, schools, taxi ranks or airports can narrowcast their own content, as the concept is simply about relaying a signal to a specific target audience. 

What about music that is relayed via a public address (PA) system – is that narrowcasting?

No. An airport or taxi rank can “broadcast” some content through its PA system, not as a narrowcaster but merely playing pre-recorded content aired from its offices. 

Can narrowcasting be used for special once-off events?

Yes.

 How can SAMRO music creators benefit from narrowcasting?

Narrowcasting is yet another avenue for SAMRO members to reap the rewards for their creative output whenever their original music works are used publicly. The Performing Rights royalties that accrue to them through this method of public music usage will be paid to them during the regular SAMRO distribution cycles. Members can rest assured that SAMRO is continuing to work hard to protect their music rights and is continuing to pursue ways to ensure compliance in this growing industry. 

What are the advantages of narrowcasting for a business? 

For businesses, the principal benefit is that the music creates a feel or ambiance. That then adds value to the business’s offering, as it helps create a pleasant setting that is enjoyed by the target market, and it makes the audience stay longer (e.g. at a restaurant) and keep coming back.

Narrowcasting is also becoming a popular form of marketing and branding by retailers. They use customer demographics to select the type of music played in specific areas at specific times of the day.

What are some of the challenges concerning the licensing of narrowcasters?

New digital technology and online streaming has made commercial music more “freely” available and is posing licence compliance challenges for SAMRO – in several areas of music usage, not just narrowcasting.  Not all narrowcasters possess a SAMRO licence, or are aware that they require one. However, the SAMRO Sales Department is actively addressing this challenge.  

And what are some of the opportunities or pluses?

Narrowcasting is also presenting SAMRO with exciting new opportunities for growth. It is a potential additional revenue stream for SAMRO’s music creators, and SAMRO is always looking for new ways to extract the optimal value from members’ music in order to maximise members’ earnings. Furthermore, the use of digital media is far more accurate when it comes to reporting and capturing data, which will be a definite advantage going forward. 

How does SAMRO keep abreast of the volume of licensed music used in narrowcast channels?

SAMRO collects playlists and cue sheets from all licensees. This allows the organisation to track music usage and perform statistical analyses to determine the appropriate licence fees, which will ultimately be passed on to the music creators as royalty income. 

In addition, SAMRO collects market intelligence and receives information from members whose music is played by some of the narrowcasters. In some cases the organisation conducts cold-calling exercises to investigate the use of rights-protected music. Who at SAMRO can members and music users contact to enquire about the possibilities offered by narrowcasting?

Source: This article first appeared on SAMRO’s website www.samro.org.za

 

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ECO-FRIENDLY MUSIC FESTIVAL IN JOZI

Posted by radio On February - 9 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

9th March 2013 sees Rain Productions, Pangolin Productions & Mix FM 93.8 in association with Obikwa and Greenpop, host Johannesburg’s premier Eco-Friendly Acoustic Music Festival: “Rise & Shine”

 

The festival will provide an opportunity for music-lovers to experience the garden oasis that is Sandton Central Park, while enjoying some of South Africa’s brightest musical talents in their acoustic formats. In addition, Rise & Shine, in association with Greenpop, will plant a tree for every 50 people that attend the festival, compensating for the festival’s carbon emissions. Collectively, festival-goers will all be contributing to a small forest taking root.

 

Tickets are available at www.ticketbreak.co.za at R150 per person, with the option of paying an additional R100 for a ‘Green ticket’, whereby Greenpop will plant a tree on your behalf somewhere in Africa.  A certificate with the co-ordinates of your sponsored tree will be sent to you once its toes are in the soil. The line-up includes Shadowclub, Tidal Waves, Naming James, NakhaneToure, Yo Grapes, Chiba Fly, Phoenix Smith, Some Grow Young, Shotgun Tori, and Jeremy Loops – a founding member of Greenpop.

 

In addition to the world-class music on offer, festival-goers are encouraged to arrive at the park as early as 8.00am for a Yoga session included in the ticket price. With the Gautrain within walking distance from Sandton Central Park, guests from as far as Pretoria, Centurion, Midrand, Benoni&Rosebankare encouraged to join in the festivities. The festival concludes at 6.00pm and the Gautrain runs every 30 minutes until 8.30pm on the day.

 

Festival-goers driving to the event are encouraged to car-pool and to park their vehicles at Sandton City from where it is a gentle 500m stroll to the park. Saturday parking is a flat-rate fee of R10 for the day. This outdoor production aims to showcase – through entertainment, enjoyment & experience – what can be achieved through a collective awareness.

 

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the next best time is now” Chinese proverb

 

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METRO FM MUSIC AWARDS NOMINEES ANNOUNCED

Posted by radio On January - 17 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

The 2013 METRO FM Music Awards Finalists announcement, was held last night at a cocktail event at Summerplace,  in Johannesburg.

The nominees, the industry and the media were invited to witness which artists have made it as finalists in this year’s awards.  Given the fact that the awards did not take place last November as it is the norm, the Finalists announcement was highly anticipated.  Metro FM being a station that celebrates local music, the guests were entertained by South Africa’s sensation and talented DJ Black Coffee, followed by DJ Ganyani and last but not least, the hilarious, ever colourful and  energetic Dr Malinga.

The MC’s at the event were our very own smooth Wiliam Lehong, The Black Chinese Guy, of the Pyajama Party Show and the ever so classy Azania Mosaka who presents Total Bliss weekdays on METRO FM.  Needless to say they did a sterling job.

The voting lines opened today 17th of January 2013 for the public to vote for their favourite artists to win the most coveted award, a Metro FM Award this year.  Remember to sms category name and favourite artist to 34764.  The voting lines will then close at 11:59 on the 17th of February 2013.

For the full list of finalist visit www.metrofm.co.za/content/news/metro-fm-music-awards-finalists-announcement-2013

Issued by Metro FM

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FINDING REASON

Posted by radio On December - 19 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS

Picture taken from chekadigital.co.za

[By Chloe Smith]

 REASON is a relatively new name in the South African Hip Hop scene. His debut album, Audio 3D, was released in June this year to an enthusiastic local fan-base. The first single, Do It Like I Can, quickly became popular and saw a decent amount of air-time all over the country. Radiobiz caught up with REASON as the debut screening of the video for A LOT ON MY MIND, his latest single.

 So how did you get into the music industry?

Proverb got me in. I played him my music, asked him what he thought of it, he gave me a review and introduced me to a couple of his music-industry friends. And the rest is history.

 Your single “Do It Like I Can” won an award at the South African Hip Hop Awards. How did that feel?

That was quite cool. That was a real honour, truly because I’ve seen the song grow from where it was this time last year. More so because it was recorded three times! The song has grown and come alive and I’ve seen it performed. People look at me funny when I’m performing it with people jumping and screaming. So I’m really excited about that.

 Was not being able to collect your first award as a musician difficult for you?

I think it was a nice story. I kind of felt that it was cool to have somebody go up on stage and say that Reason couldn’t come and accept his award because he’s shooting a video.

 His decision to host the screening of his latest video, A Lot On My Mind, in Newtown was a bold move. Most artists opt for the glamorous, high-end venues, especially when they’re new to the scene and want to make a name for themselves quickly. REASON is just as ambitious as the rest of them but I think that he understands his scene and the people that make up the Hip Hop scene better.

 What was the background behind “A Lot On My Mind”?

There was a lot on my mind at that time in my life. I was broke, my girlfriend wasn’t working, my grandmother was sick so I was going out to drink to forget about it. I was just in that weird space. I also had an album coming out so it was quite an awkward time. So that’s what the song was about – that period in life. But I think for the most part, we put it out as second single because we realised how much people could relate to the song. Everybody’s got a lot on their minds. So that’s why we put it out as the second single. Apart from the fact that it’s a banging song.

 One could say that choosing Kitcheners as the venue communicated an older, more seasoned glamour and style and that by choosing to screen the video there, REASON was linking the underground side of Hip Hop to his single. A bold and clever move – unlike glamorous screenings, no one had any qualms about raising their glasses in the air and grooving the minute A Lot On My Mind came on.

 What was the filming process like for the “A Lot On My Mind” music video?

That was really cool. We were working with Justin from Gorilla Films. He knew what he wanted to shoot; pretty much had all the pictures in his mind. It was a night shoot over two nights and then we banged it out. I didn’t even receive my award because we were shooting.

 Sponsored by Millers, the screening was a definite success, with the crowd jammed into the small space in front of the screens. A sense of camaraderie seemed to fill the comfortable space, as if everyone there knew that you were a lover of Hip Hop, which made you a friend. The beer was cold, the music was loud and the vibe was pumping. Camera flashes illuminated the faces and the old-fashioned wallpaper, chandeliers glinted in the ceilings and somehow everyone seemed to be living only in that moment, as if reality was more real then and the only time was the present. REASON himself milled with the crowd, greeting people and holding conversations in a very relaxed manner. His down-to-earth approach to the night ensured that everyone somehow felt personally connected to him through the event.

 Do you feel that the South African Hip Hop industry is becoming too Americanised?

I think it’s not necessarily Americanised – I think it’s popularised. People are getting to understand the relevance of making music that is actually popular to people. But I think for the most part, it’s really impressive that everybody has their own integrity and they push their own agendas and they push their own perceptions, as opposed to those of the Americans. But trends are trends. There will always be baggy jeans, there will always be American accents and there will always be grills and stuff like that. I think for the most part, when it comes down to the music, as popularised as it may sound, it really is authentic, it really is South African.

Plans for the future?

Music, music, more music. Tours, videos, collaborations, more music, tours, videos, collaborations – just bigger and bigger.

 If you could tour any country in the world, which country would you visit?

I always used to want to go to Jamaica but it seems like everybody is going to Jamaica now. So for now, I’ll say Nigeria.

Why Nigeria?

Because of the stories that I hear, I want to see if it really is that terrible…. but also to get an understanding of their industry. As a musician, we all know that they have one of the strongest and most independent industries in the African continent and it influences us as much as it influences overseas. I think it would be, on a music level, to study how they get to that level where these guys are finding America and they’re opening up Def Jams in Africa. Just to understand how to make things go that big.

 Despite a few technical glitches, the crowd walked away satisfied. REASON even announced that he would play the video twice, because he felt like it and nobody complained. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing more of REASON, more of his music and definitely more of his videos.

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