Dee Koala, an acclaimed artist hailing from Cape Town, South Africa, has experienced a remarkable rise in her brand’s prominence in recent years. This surge has enabled her to engage in successful collaborations with renowned artists like Busiswa, Riky Rick, Sho Madjozi, Maglera Doe Boy, Yanga Chief, Boity, Costa Titch, Dj Dimplez, Moonchild Sanelly, and a host of others. Her debut album, ‘4 The Khaltsha,’ launched in 2019, was met with enthusiastic acclaim from audiences, earning her the prestigious Best Female Award at the 2020 South African Hip Hop Awards.
Gracing some of the grandest stages in the industry, Dee Koala has showcased her talent at esteemed events such as Absolut One Source Live, Boiler Room, Major League Gardens, Cotton Fest, and Red Bull BC One. Notably, her vibrant presence extended to brand campaigns including Adidas ZX Boost, Doritos Flamin Hot, and Bettr Bank. A testament to her influence, she was prominently featured in South Africa’s ‘Sunday Times’ newspaper with a full-page article.
Acknowledging her significant impact on South Africa’s urban culture scene, Dee Koala was rightfully recognized in 2019, securing a spot on The Plug Magazine and Castle Lite’s curated list of the 100 Most Influential People In South Africa’s Urban Culture. Keeping the momentum going, she recently dropped her latest single, ‘Khaltsha,’ featuring Youngsta CPT, on the 8th of September 2023
With an impressive discography boasting 30 mixtapes, two albums, numerous EPs, and a string of accolades, Riyadh Roberts, known by his stage name YoungstaCPT, stands as a pivotal South African emcee of this era, having kicked off his journey in 2010.
YoungstaCPT aptly describes his music as synonymous with “Kaapstad” (Cape Town). He invites listeners to journey through the streets of Cape Town with his songs, providing a unique perspective and an authentic glimpse into the place he calls home. His music serves as an unofficial tour guide, offering a view of Cape Town not commonly seen by tourists, presenting the city from a fresh angle.
Growing up surrounded by the rich cultural tapestry of Cape Town greatly influenced YoungstaCPT’s style, tone, and linguistic choices. He proudly asserts that his style is distinct, shaped by the unique slang and cultural nuances of his hometown. This distinctiveness sets him apart, carving his own niche in the rap scene. YoungstaCPT’s musical journey is decorated with several prestigious accolades:
- 2013: Awarded “King of Street Rap”
- 2017: Named “Lyricist of the Year” at the SA Hip Hop Awards
- 2018: Clinched “Mixtape of the Year” at the Slikour Awards
- 2019: Garnered “Album and Music Video of the Year” at the SA Hip Hop Awards
- 2020:Received a SAMA Nomination
In addition to his local triumphs, YoungstaCPT has taken his music to international shores, embarking on tours to Australia, Switzerland, Namibia, and Dubai across various years. YoungstaCPT’s journey in the music industry continues to evolve, leaving an indelible mark on the South African and international hiphop scenes.
DJ READY D
He won the South African DMC Championship four times, the Western Cape Regional Champs and DJ OF THE DECADE awards.
Accolades and Achievements include: DJ Ready D and Prophets of the City are Inductees for the Hip Hop Wall of Fame at the South African Hip Hop Museum. Grandmaster Ready D is selected to be the music supervisor, music producer and cameo appearances for the 2023 series on Showmax called Spinners. His impressive accolafdes include SA Hip Hop Awards – King of The Western Cape and Honorary Award1st Place SA Technics Battle of the DJ’S Award x4 Hype Magazines Grandmaster Title and so much more
Perhaps better known as the DJ for (POC) Prophets of the City, He toured Europe extensively with POC and BVK for a period of 12 years performing alongside groups like Public Enemy, Fugees, Ice T, Spearhead, James Brown, Rob Swift,Steve D, Will Smith, Black Eyed Peas, DJ Spinna, Jazzy Jeff, Slipnot, Cypress Hill, Eve, Akon, Grand Master Flash, etc If not behind the Decks, he’s producing music for various Artist and TV shows. He enjoys superstar status with a cult following all over the country. DJ Ready D is definitely the most exciting DJ in SA to see perform live. GRAND MASTER READY D took the art of his brand of DJ’ing into many areas where it was unknown eg: Big music events around SA such as the ULTIMATE X, ICE FESTIVAL, SYNERGY, ROCKING THE DAISIES, OPPIKOPPI and the KKNK FESTIVAL (tours into rural and disadvantaged areas where most of the community do not have electricity) OUTLAND, SPLASHY FEN,WOODSTOCK FESTIVAL ,RAND SHOW, ALEX GROLL INTERNATIONAL INLINE SKATING CHAMPIONSHIPS,RED
BULL BC1, RED BULL CAR PARK DRIFT, REDBULL DOWNHILL EXTREME CHAMPS, GRAHAMSTOWN JAZZ FESTIVAL, CAPE TOWN JAZZ FESTIVAL and various trade shows
Bongani Sotshononda is a multifaceted musician, traversing the realms of composition, arrangement, and percussion mastery. His repertoire spans an impressive array of instruments, with the chromatic marimba standing out among the many he adeptly commands.
His musical journey has been a global odyssey, where he has shared his rich tapestry of skills with diverse audiences across continents. Both in his home country, South Africa, and on international stages, Bongani has received resounding acclaim. His creative footprint is vividly painted through various pioneering projects. The Indigenous Orchestra, a fusion of diverse African instruments, stands as a testament to his commitment to showcasing the continent’s musical heritage. The Marimba Extravaganza, an ensemble comprising 18 marimba artists complemented by brass and percussion, is yet another jewel in his crown.
At the helm of the United Nations of Africa Band, a jazz collective featuring musicians from across the continent, Bongani has graced the prestigious Cape Town International Jazz Festival twice, captivating audiences with their harmonious compositions. His founding role in the globally acclaimed Phambili Marimba Band further underscores his influence on the music scene. Collaborating with luminaries such as Professor Mike Campbell, they crafted music for the 50th Africa Day Celebrations, a grand spectacle uniting the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra, the SA Youth Choir, and Khayelitsha Black Mambazo.
Bongani’s association with Artscape sees him directing music for various productions, a partnership that underscores his dedication to artistic expression. His membership in JAV, a collaboration uniting musicians from Reunion Islands, Madagascar, and South Africa, is yet another testament to his commitment to cross-cultural musical exchange. Currently engaged in producing an album with Mike Campbell set for release, Bongani’s collaborative spirit has seen him perform with an illustrious array of artists, from Stefon Harris of New York to the Brubeck Brothers, Intsholo, Pops Mohamed, and many more.
Bongani’s musical journey is a harmonious fusion of talent, dedication, and a commitment to cross-continental musical dialogues, making him a revered figure in the global music landscape
Kristi Lowe is a singer/songwriter from Cape Town, South Africa. Her music career took off at the tender age of fifteen when her first single, in collaboration with Goodluck, saw huge success due to its powerful message and the campaign behind it – a fight to save the life of her sister, Jenna Lowe. After the tragic loss of her sister, Kristi took a few years to heal before rediscovering her
passion for music and writing. Channelling her experience into her heartfelt single ‘Take Me Away,’, Kristi laid bare the pain of loss and her journey towards healing. , and is working with some of South Africa’s greatest musicians and producers.
Since then Kristi has continued to reach new heights in her career, with 2 of her recent singles reaching the top of the charts on local stations.
Candice Thornton embodies the quintessence of musical talent, a South African soloist whose journey with music commenced at a tender age. Born into a family where music was the heartbeat, she imbibed melodies and performance from an early exposure to her father’s guitar-strummed tunes. This childhood love blossomed into a lifelong passion, compelling Candice to dedicate herself completely to the world of music, establishing her career and a brand as a vocal coach.
Regarded as possessing one of the most resplendent, velvety, and soul-stirring voices in South Africa, Candice continues to transcend boundaries, shattering limitations that confine musical expression. Her musical odyssey boasts impressive milestones. She graced the prestigious stage of the Cape Town International Jazz Festival in 2012, a testament to her artistry and vocal prowess. Notably, she claimed victory at the GrandWest Vocal Competition, solidifying her place among the country’s musical elite.
Candice’s pursuit of musical excellence led her to acquire accreditations in Music Vocals and Music Business from the esteemed Cape Institute of Music South Africa, fortifying her foundation in the industry.
A collaborative spirit defines her artistry. Her duet, “Reason to Smile,” alongside fellow Cape Town artist Jonathan Rubain, is a heartfelt composition delving into the human facade of masking inner turmoil with a brave smile. In 2013, she co-wrote the hit “Superhero” with Chad Saaiman under the Stereotype Records label, marking yet another significant milestone in her career. Candice Thornton’s musical narrative is one of passion, resilience, and a commitment to emotive storytelling through her enchanting voice, ensuring her place as a revered figure in the rich tapestry of South Africa’s music scene
THE GROOVE MISSIONARIES
The Groove Missionaries, a musical collective hailing from Cape Town, consist of some of the city’s finest session musicians. Their core quartet features Adrian Fowler on drums, Keegan Williams on guitar and vocals, CJ Bergh on lead guitar & bass, and Michael Trollip on keys. When in full swing, they transform into an eight-piece powerhouse, incorporating brass, percussion, and backing vocals. However, their versatility allows them to condense into a dynamic duo.
These versatile musicians have graced both international stages and the most renowned local venues and major events. Their repertoire spans decades of beloved classics and popular hits, guaranteeing to get your feet tapping and your spirit swaying.
Brandon Leigh is a luminary in the entertainment realm, dedicating two decades to the exhilarating domains of DJing and MCing. With an impressive 16-year tenure in radio as an on-air presenter for stations like P4 and Heart 104.90fm, he currently captivates audiences with his magnetic presence on KFM Nights, a show that has elevated to become the foremost listen-to show in its time frame.
A maestro of compilation and production, Brandon orchestrated the much-loved Brandon Leigh’s Weekend Show over an extensive 8-year period. His musical prowess shone through in the creation of the “Heart Old Skool” Volume 2 CD, a chart-topper that achieved gold status in 2008.
Fuelled by an infectious enthusiasm, Brandon epitomizes unwavering professionalism and an unrelenting energy that has positioned him at the vanguard of the industry. His intuitive ability to gauge and connect with audiences sets the stage for excellence, ensuring the delivery of expectations.
His extensive experience spans a multifaceted landscape. From spinning tracks in bustling nightclubs across the city to international forays in Namibia and Switzerland, Brandon has graced numerous corporate events and private soirées, including weddings, milestone celebrations, and charitable galas. A true virtuoso in orchestrating unforgettable musical experiences, Brandon Leigh continues to enchant audiences with his dynamic artistry
Cole Tyler Carlse, known by his vibrant persona, DJ Camo, emerged into the world on May 12, 2012. Even in his earliest years, music held the power to soothe this spirited soul. At the tender age of 11, his passion for music continues to be his beacon, a medium through which he expresses his inner self.
DJ Camo has already left his mark across the City, gracing diverse events from lively Street Festivals to the roaring excitement of Biker Rallys and the intimate cheer of Birthday Parties. Versatility is his forte, traversing all music genres and relishing the unity music fosters among people.
However, Cole’s aspirations extend beyond the turntables. He’s delving into the realms of acting and modeling, finding additional channels for his creative expression. With a love for crafting rhymes, he’s also exploring the world of rap.
Despite his multifaceted talents, DJ Camo holds a vision for the skies. Dreaming of soaring as a Commercial Pilot, he envisions a future where DJing and MCing remain integral parts of his everyday life.
In the vibrant mosaic of Cape Town’s youth, DJ Camo stands out as a befitting Ambassador. His dynamic presence and diverse talents not only encapsulate the spirit of Cape Town but also radiate through the vivacious energy of the Cape Town Arts Festival
IMAD, short for the Institute for Music and Indigenous Arts Development, is a not-for-profit entity operating in underprivileged areas in and around Cape Town, striving to bring music education within reach of young individuals.
Established in 2007, IMAD imparts musical skills to children, teaching them to play diverse instruments and sing in choirs, with a primary emphasis on the Indigenous Cape Jazz genre. Unfortunately, many schools in the developing regions of Cape Town lack music in their curriculum.
IMAD offers young musicians a platform to cultivate their talent, which will ultimately shape their future prospects. The organization serves as a constructive alternative to gang involvement, substance abuse, and other harmful pursuits in the townships by nurturing individuals’ abilities. This guidance and backing will propel them towards becoming successful professional musicians. Boasting over 200 students and 20 teachers, IMAD not only provides employment but also fosters communities, all while promoting the art of music.
AFRO-SUNS MARIMBA BAND
The Afro-Suns is a marimba ensemble specialising in Marimba Xylophones, comprising Bass, Tenor, and Soprano marimbas. Their unique style blends traditional African music and popular tunes, accompanied by percussion and drumming, incorporating polyrhythmic patterns on the marimbas and vocals. Founded in 2003 by local marimba artists and percussionists from Langa Township, the group typically comprises six to five performers—three on marimba and two on drums and percussion. They also have a larger ensemble featuring three female performers and a saxophonist alongside the marimba band.
The Afro-Suns have showcased their talents at various events such as functions, festivals, weddings, corporate gatherings, both locally and internationally. Their performances have graced venues including Arts Cape, Baxter Theatre, Kirstenbosch, The Africa Dance Theatre, Qatar/Doha, CTICC, Stellenbosch Wine Estates, hotels, and Moyo at the Spier.
- Vocals & Dancers: Neliswa Moya, Yamkela Liwani, and Phamela Gongxeka.
- Soprano Marimba: Luciano Nqikashe.
- Tenor Marimba: Sisonke Godlo.
- Bass Marimba: Henry Jeane
- Saxophone: Allen Gqomo.
- Percussion & Drums: Kwanele Gongxeka