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Rihanna Reached Out to South African Maskandi Artist Mbuzeni For a Collaboration After He Performed A Remix to ‘Diamonds’

"This is a big thing for South Africa and for maskandi as a whole," says Mbuzeni.

Popular South African maskandi artist Mbuzeni Mkhize is delighted to work on a song with Rihanna, SowetanLIVE reports.

According to the news website, the seasoned maskandi artist performed his own take of Rihanna's 2012 hit "Diamonds" in Istanbul in 2018. A year later, Riri's team reached out to him for a collaboration on a song.


This was after an international promoter took a video of his performance, which clearly moved Riri when she saw it.

Mbuzeni will be making the trip to work on the song in the US in December. The artist told the website he had already started on the song, and shared what this meant to him and maskandi.

"Rihanna could have chosen any person to work with her. But she chose me out of hundreds of maskandi artists. For that, I am honored and humbled. I thank my ancestors for the gift [of singing]," he was quoted as saying by the website. "This is a big thing for South Africa and for maskandi as a whole. This shows that my music is taken seriously wherever I perform."

Mbuzeni is one of the genre's most popular hits, with multiple hits from his eight studio albums.

Maskandi is a genre of music, associated with the Zulu people of South Africa. It's characterized by the heavy use of the acoustic guitar (and sometimes the concertina), and high-pitched vocals. Lyrically, maskandi is known for addressing issues faced by South Africa's working class.

For a crash course on maskandi, you can listen to this Apple Music playlist below:

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Photo: Alvin Ukpeh.

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Nigerian youth have used the internet and social media to create and sustain a loud voice for themselves. The expression of frustration and the calls for change may have started online, but it's having a profound effect on the lives of every Nigerian with each passing day. What started as the twitter hashtag #EndSARS has grown into a nationwide youth revolution led by the people.

Even after the government supposedly disbanded the SARS (Special Anti-Robbery Squad) unit on the 10th of October, young Nigerians have not relented in their demands for better policing. The lack of trust for government promises has kept the youth protesting on the streets and online.

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