Brown Dash – kwaito is Still AliveBy Benjamin Moshatama , 17 Nov 2008
What have you been up to since your last album two years ago?
I’ve been working on starting up my own entertainment company that mainly focuses on recruiting young musicians.
I’ve also focused my energies on giving free performances in township schools as a way of giving back to my community.
What made you go with ’90s-style kwaito for your new album, Back 2 Kasi?
I have always been inspired by Mdu Masilela because he kept it real and never changed his original sound. He didn’t run away from the unique groove of kasi (township)- style music.
“People were thinking that it was gone because over the past two years, there haven’t been many kwaito releases.”
I see you dumped Mdu on this album and opted for Mandla Spikiri.
I guess I needed a change. I have to admit that I lost touch on my last two albums, so I needed to do something different this time.
I worked with Spikiri because he understands my lyrical lingo and he’s clued up on the street culture.
How has it been since you moved from DJ Sbu’s TS Records?
I feel more independent where I am right now. Everything I do is now based on my own creativity and I have the opportunity to control what I’m doing. I like the fact that the things I do now are mostly based on my own decisions.
There have been many claims in the media that this genre is dead.
I don’t think it is. People were thinking that it was gone because over the past two years, there haven’t been many kwaito releases. But it is very much still alive.
So who are your top five kwaito guns and why?
I have to say Brown Dash because I still get a lot of love from fans. Mandoza is still keeping it real and has been consistent over the years.
Kabelo is always bringing something new to the game and people love his sing-along songs. Bricks has a unique style of fusing hip-hop and kwaito that has taken him to the top.
Spikiri is always in streets trying to find out what people are interested in and then goes back to the studio trying to come up with something different for his audience.
I see you left out Arthur Mafokate. Does the title “King of Kwaito” still belong to him?
I don’t think anyone owns that title. I think that title is given to the person who brings out the best hit each year.
Brown Dash’s Favourite Tunes Of All Time
Baby I’m Scared of You — Womack and Womack
Don’t Worry About a Thing — Bob Marley
Izinja — Mapaputsi
Ezibuhlungu Azipheli — Mdu Masilela
This article was originally published in the The Times(SA)