After the Studio Africa London launch, Okayafrica favourite and one of Joburg’s finest Spoek Mathambo sat down with the Boiler Room‘s Thristian bPm for i-D magazine. As well as talking about the influence Chicago House and UK Garage on South African kwaito he surprises a slightly apprehensive Thristian by revealing that he’s comfortable with being received as an ambassador for South African music, explaining that he uses the international stage (like his Studio Africa/Boiler Room set) to rep South Africa. Spoek also touches on some socio-political issues including the enduring segregation of South Africa’s house music scene; the optimism he feels as a young South African and why he decided to stop emulating US and European music styles. Check out some quotes and the video itself below and, for a throwback, click through to the Okayafrica TV interview.
On the class & racial segregation in SA’s house scene:
“There’s the drama even with the house scene: is it commercial house, is it deep house and [if you're] fancy, sophisticated and upwardly mobile it’s cool to like deep house, and then there’s the ghetto house of Pretoria and whatnot.” [...] South Africa’s so ridiculous about race that we have a whole race for people that are mixed race: and that’s a thing, coloured people are a [separate] thing.
“And the way music will relate to it is that they’ll say: well this is house music for coloured people, house music for white people, house music for Indian kids, house music for black kids. But I am excited for the breakdown, where influences can just spread and everybody can just enjoy the same stuff….But within South Africa, loving and appreciating the same stuff, which doesn’t happen yet”