Image belongs to Gee Six Five

Singer Gee Six Five real name, Nkosingiphile Olpha Selepe, of 'Obani Lababantu' hit song.

Beloved South African Artist Gee Six Five Has Died

South Africans are mourning the death of 65-year-old Gee Six Five who has reportedly died from COVID-19. Gee Six Five was known for her amapiano hit song 'Obani Lababantu'.

South African academic and breakout amapiano artist, Gee Six Five has reportedly died. According to News24 Gee Six Five, real name Nkosingiphile Olpha Selepe passed away this Wednesday morning from COVID-19. Tributes and condolences have been pouring in from South Africans who have been following Gee Six Five's sudden amapiano career. The 65-year-old PhD candidate became famous after trending on Twitter following her viral hit song "Obani Lababantu". Gee Six Five's official Twitter account released a statement detailing that she was self-isolating at the time of her death, this after receiving a positive COVID-19 diagnosis only two days ago.


Read: Former Nigerian President Mamadou Tandja Has Died

Selepe reportedly died in the early hours of the morning after a short battle with COVID-19. South African award winning magazine editor, Sbu Mpungose who is Gee Six Five's niece confirmed the passing of her aunt. According to the Sowetan, Mpungose in a heartfelt tweet wrote a tribute that commends Gee Six Five for the "fearlessness" she carried throughout her life. EWN reports that the Mayor of Newcastle in the province of KwaZulu Natal, Ntuthuko Mahlaba, extended condolences to the community where Selepe hails from.

"Obani Lababantu" inspired many South Africans because of Gee Six Five's courage to create a song in a very youthful musical genre. Selepe coined her stage name from her age and her elderly status. She was a retired school teacher and PhD candidate. "Obani Lababantu" means "who are these people" in the Zulu language. Selepe revealed that "Obani Lababantu" was a song of motivation to people who have self-limiting beliefs and are afraid to do anything out of fear of being ridiculed. However, some on Twitter intimated that it was also a comic interrogation of academic research requirements for citations and references.

Gee Six Five shortly rose to fame within weeks of releasing "Obani Lababantu" last month which shot up South Africa's iTunes Top 20. The single trended on Twitter and the warm woman was suddenly in a stream of interviews. The song offered comic relief and bridged generations in South Africa as Gee Six Five encouraged all South Africans to take hold of their dreams.

Selepe was an educationalist and had reportedly released an album of Zulu nursery rhymes before her sudden fame. She reportedly obtained her Masters degree at the extraordinary age of 63. The singer revealed that she anticipated to graduate in 2022 with her PhD in Education from the University of KwaZulu Natal. She performed live only once and according to News24 had stated that the song would be her last project.

South Africans are admittedly saddened by the news of the artist's passing. Here are some of their reactions below:





Interview

Kofi Jamar Switches Lanes In 'Appetite for Destruction'

The Ghanaian rapper and "Ekorso" hitmaker presents a different sound in his latest EP.

The drill scene in Ghana has been making waves across the continent for some time now. If you're hip to what a crop of young and hungry artists from the city of Kumasi in Ghana and beyond have been doing over the past year, then you already know about rapper Kofi Jamar.

Towards the end of November last year he dropped one of the biggest drill songs to emerge from Ghana's buzzing drill scene, the popular street anthem "Ekorso." In the December and January that followed, "Ekorso" was the song on everyone's lips, the hip-hop song that took over the season, with even the likes of Wizkid spotted vibing to the tune.

Currently sitting at over 10 million streams across digital streaming platforms, the song topped charts, even breaking records in the process. "Ekorso" maintained the number one spot on Apple Music's Hip-Hop/Rap: Ghana chart for two months uninterrupted, a first in the history of the chart. It also had a good stint at number one of the Ghana Top 100 chart as well, among several other accolades.

Even though he's the creator of what could be the biggest song of Ghana's drill movement till date, Kofi Jamar doesn't plan on replicating his past music or his past moves. He has just issued his second EP, a 6-track project titled Appetite for Destruction, and it would surprise you to know that there isn't a single drill song on it. Although drill played a huge role in his meteoric rise, he wants to be known as way more than just a drill rapper. He wants to be known as a complete and versatile artist, unafraid to engage in any genre — and he even looks forward to creating his own genre of music during the course of his career.

We spoke to Kofi Jamar about his latest EP, and he tells us about working with Teni, why he's gravitating away from drill to a new sound, and more. Check out our conversation below.

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