Music

The 15 Best South African Songs of the Month (March)

The best South African songs of the month featuring Sho Madjozi, Prince Kaybee, Emtee, Kwesta, Mr JazziQ, DBN Gogo and more.

Here are the South African songs and music videos that caught our attention this month.



Sho Madjozi “Shahumba” (featuring Thomas Chauke)

Produced by Tboy Daflame and the legendary Dr. Thomas Chauke, "Shahumba" is a genre-defying record that fuses hard-hitting contemporary drums with Xitsonga traditional music guitar riffs and groove. The visuals start off by showing a portrayal of a young Sho Madjozi who had dreams of being a musician and switches to present day when she is popular and has made a hit with Shahumba (Chauke's clan name) - who is notoriously known for not doing features and has released over 40 albums. Actual footage of Sho Madjozi, as a kid, and her family can be seen towards the end of the video.

Prince Kaybee “Insurance” (featuring King Monada)

Talented deejay and producer Prince Kaybee connects with King Monada for the emotive song "Insurance", taken from his latest studio album, The 4th Republic. In the song, King Monada expresses that he requires his potential romantic partner to have insurance before getting into a relationship with him, and advises people not to fall in love without being insured.

SayFar & Mnqobi Yazo “Amathafa”

Rising deejay and producer SayFar dropped the visuals to "Amathafa". The track blends dance music elements with afro-pop and features Mnqobi Yazo, who questions a lover's intention and the strength of their relationship. "Amathafa" is the lead single to SayFar's upcoming debut EP Rhandzu, which means "love" in Xitsonga.

Tellaman “Overdue” (featuring Sha Sha & Oxlade)

Tellaman teams up with Sha Sha and Nigerian artist Oxlade to deliver his new single "Overdue", off the Rhythms of Zamunda compilation album. The infectious Afrobeats-inflected tune is a standout (from the new songs) on the project that features and has songs by some of the continent's best.

Kwesta “Fire In The Ghetto” (featuring Troublle)

"Fire In The Ghetto" is the lead single to Kwesta's upcoming album. Built on frustration and care, the groovy track is an ode to people who live in the ghetto, and it seeks to inspire them despite having leaders who seem to have forsaken them. The esteemed rapper recently celebrated the fifth year anniversary of his last album, DaKAR II - one of the highest-selling SA hip-hop albums of all time.

Priddy Ugly “A Reminder to You”

"We need more militant youth / Diligent troops, the enemy is itchin' to shoot / The system is screwed, they got the kids Ritalin juiced / They flippin' the news, and record labels biddin' for views" is how Priddy Ugly opens the lyrically-heavy and emotionally-charged "A Reminder to You". Not only does Priddy showcase his prowess with the pen, but he chronicles some of the ills society has and the injustices of the entertainment/music industry. The record comes after the recent announcement of Priddy Ugly's label, Global African Sounds (GAS) partnership with Stay Low.

Brvdley “Nyamazane”

After being behind the impossibly catchy hook on Dr. Mavibes' drill banger "Umlilo", Brvdley has dropped his first single under Ambitiouz Entertainment. The 18-year old rapper from Mpumalanga is out to be an unstoppable force within SA hip-hop as echoed in the song's title, which translates to cheetah and pays homage to his birthplace (kaNyamazane).

Nasty C “Ithemba” [C-MIX]

Dubbing it the "C-Mix", Nasty C decided to add a verse to Emtee's single, "Ithemba". Sticking to the song's original concept, the rapper details the struggles he's been dealing with since his stardom and pursuit for international acclaim. Showing his approval, Emtee took to Twitter to suggest an official remix. The two last collaborated on "Winning", from Emtee's highly praised 2015 debut album, Avery.

Emtee “Laqhasha” (featuring Lolli Native and Flash Ikumkani)

Emtee is gearing up for his upcoming third studio album with his latest release "Laqasha" featuring Emtee Records labelmates, Lolli Native and Flash Ikumkani. The song's title and concept is borrowed from a character who appeared on the classic South African sitcom Sgud' Snaysi - on the show, Laqasha was a loan shark who harassed the main character S'dumo (played by the late Joe Mafela), and often threatened to break S'dumo's bones when he went to collect his money. In the song, Emtee refers to himself as Laqasha and asks those who owe him to pay up.

Dr Peppa “Mntase” (featuring Blxckie, Aux Cable, Chang Cello & Lord Script)

Deejay, Dr Peppa calls on Blxckie, Aux Cable (former member of Witness The Funk), Chang Cello and Lord Script to deliver his new playful single "Mntase". The fast-rising Blxckie carries the song and comes through with it's ear-catching hook. With its irresistible visuals and fans already generating memes based on the playful chorus, "Mntase" is expected to become a hit.

ASAP Shembe “Hlala Phantsi”

"Hlala Phantsi" is the opener to ASAP Shembe's new two-track EP, Shembe Snacks - which is supposed to hold his fans "down before the main course". The self-produced track sees the rapper from Vosloorus switch between enthralling flows and melodies. The 2:05 running time of the song will surely leave his fans hungry for more, as the creative/visual direction of the EP suggests - the coverart design is borrowed from the BBQ flavour of popular snacks, Go-Slo's.

Benzo “Kumkanikazi”

Emerging rapper Benzo shared the music video to her 031 Choppa-produced breakout banger and title track to her debut EP, "Kumkanikazi". Directed by Katlego Gordana & Franasonic, the visuals vividly depict the bravado of her Xhosa raps; showing her arrival in the game and her firm declaration of being a queen (ukumkanikazi). "Kumkanikazi, nawe uyayaz', yibanembeko xa uthetha nam" (kumkanikazi, you know it, show respect when you speak to me), she raps in a commanding tone in the chorus.

Felo Le Tee “Nje Nje” (featuring Mr JazziQ, Reece Madlisa, Zuma, Mpura, DJ Maphorisa & Kabza De Small)

Mr JazziQ, Reece Madlisa, Zuma, Mpura officially link up with DJ Maphorisa & Kabza De Small for the first time on Felo Le Tee's "Nje Nje". The artists have been teasing the song in their deejay sets and performances since the beginning of the year. Amaroto and Mpura's potent delivery and energetic cadence shine through the song's buzzing bassline and fizzy synths.

Mr JazziQ x Kabza De Small x Lady Du “Woza” (featuring Boohle)

For his first release of the year, Mr JazziQ enlists Lady Du, Boohle & Kabza De Small on the dance-inviting track, "Woza". Kabza De Small, whose vocally contributing to songs more as of late, and Boohle provide the underlying vox and chorus, while Lady Du takes charge with her captivating flow in the refrains. The track is already proving to be a hit since it's leak hit the streets last month.

DBN Gogo x Blaqnick x MasterBlaq “Khuza Gogo” (featuring Mpura, Ama Avenger and M.J)

"Khuza Gogo was actually M.J's idea," DBN Gogo reveals in a short film that dropped in anticipation for the song. The adored deejay (and all the artists involved) finally released "Khuza Gogo," after being in the works since December. The song asks uGogo (grandmother - DBN Gogo, in this instance) to khuza (rebuke) uncultured and ungovernable people, perhaps at groove.

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Photo credit PHILL MAGAKOE/AFP via Getty Images

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