MFE Pays Tribute to PRO on The Second Anniversary of The South African Hip-Hop Legend’s Passing

Artists signed to PRO's label MFE commemorate him in new tribute song 'MAWE: VITA24' on the second anniversary of the South African hip-hop pioneer's passing.

One aspect of PRO(Kid)'s legacy that rarely gets mentioned is his label. As head of Money First Entertainment, the label he founded, PRO played roles in the trajectories and craft of artists such as Red Button, Captian_fs, sFs 5 Star and TeePee among others. The former three were official members of MFE with Red Button, PRO's protégé, being the first artist to be signed to the label.

PRO who passed away exactly two years ago today gets a tribute from his label's roster. "MAWE: VITA24" is a remix of an sFs 5 Star song titled "Mawe" that the artist released in February.

"The song was not about Linda," says sFs 5 Star in an interview with OkayAfrica two weeks ago. "But it was about ancestral powers to help me through my life. But when I did the second verse when I mentioned him and went back to the chorus, I was like this sounds like I'm talking about him."

After realising the second anniversary of PRO's passing was approaching, the crew agreed on working on a remix that would be a tribute to their former frontman.

Read: Kasi Rap Meets Trap in Red Button's New EP 'Dark Knights'

Until today, sFs 5 Star was the only artist who hadn't released a tribute song to PRO. Red Button paid respect to PRO in the song "Mlindoms (P.R.O)" from his 2018 EP Dark Knights, Captain's "Meloding" from his debut album The Ape Tape came with an unheard PRO verse. According to the talented emcee from the Free State province, PRO contributed in shaping the sound and direction of The Ape, a project that was years in the making.

Red Button, sFs 5 Star, TeePee and Captain_fs. Image courtesy of artists.

The tribute expands beyond the song, however, as in the last two weeks, the MFE crew has been releasing a series of interviews in which each member shares highlighting who PRO was a person, what his art meant to them, how they started working with him and what that experience was like.

The rest of the country joined in and paid respect to PRO on the second eve of his death. PRO passed away on the 8th of August in 2018.

PRO is regarded by a majority of South African hip-hop fans as the greatest of all time in the country. MTV Based gave him the number 1 spot on their once-off list of the Greatest South African MCs of All Time.

Stream "MAWE: VITA24" on SoundCloud and check our a list of the best PRO songs ranked by SPeeka here.


News Brief
Photo by Ian Dickson/Redferns (via Getty Images)

New Fela Kuti Reissues & Box Set Are Coming This Year

Partisan Records has shared initial news of upcoming Fela 50th anniversary reissues and a new box set on the way.

Fela Kuti fans have a lot to look forward to this year as Partisan Records (home to Fela's catalog) has announced plans to release special reissues of two 1971 albums: London Scene and Live! With Ginger Baker, the classic album in which Fela and his band Africa '70 where joined by the Cream drummer.

The label has also said they plan to release the fifth installment in their ongoing Fela vinyl reissue box set series, which are handpicked by notable names in the music world. Previous volumes have been curated by Erykah Badu, Questlove, and Brian Eno.

Partisan has also shared that they will also be launching a scholarship program at Fela's alma mater, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, in London this year. The label will be sharing more information on all of that exciting Fela Kuti 2021 news soon, so keep and eye out.

In the meantime, Fela Kuti is currently leading the fan vote for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. You can head here to cast a daily ballot for the afrobeat legend. Voting is capped at one ballot per day.

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