The 16 Best South African Songs of the Month

SA tracks and videos that caught our attention this month featuring Ayanda Jiya, KLY, Prince Kaybee and more.

Our list of the best South African songs of the month includes new singles that dropped in February, alongside those that were highlighted by getting the visual treatment.

Check out our selections below, which feature Ayanda Jiya, KLY, Prince Kaybee among others.

The list is in no particular order.

Follow our new MZANSI HEAT playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

Ayanda Jiya ft. A-Reece “Falling For You” 

"Falling For You" is an old school RnB-inspired tune in which the singer details her feelings for a special somebody who stole her heart. Ayanda sounds at home over an instrumental that leads with a looped 8-bit sound reminiscent of the video game Pacman. A-Reece's verse is cherry on top of an already sweet cake. He raps in sparse lines that allow him and the listener to breathe as he adds his 2 cents on the subject.

KLY “Umbuzo”

KLY's song "Umbuzo" got the visual treatment this month. The music video shows the South African R&B singer playing the roles of the boss and the servant. The video depicts two love stories, happening in parallel. It juxtaposes the two relationships, especially the ability for a man to provide material things.

A-Reece “Everybody Hates Reece”

On "Everybody Hates Reece," A-Reece is introspective, sneering at the whole game. He feels he's stepped on toes unknowingly, and doesn't regret it much. Nothing special, just Reece talking his talk as usual.

Emtee ft. S’Villa and Snyman “Abantu”

Emtee recently dropped a video for "Abantu," one of the standout songs from his 2017 EP DIY 2. In the video, the artists and his collaborators can be seen trekking to an event, first by bus then a chopper.

S’Villa “Thula”

"Thula Mama" is a somber tune with an equally somber video that shows a young man dying and his funeral follows. S'Villa's a great vocalist, and "Thula Mama" is an effective single about surviving pain.

Flex Rabanyan “Y.A.G.U (Young Ass Grown Up)”

Flex Rabanyan cruises around his hood and celebrates family in the music video for his sentimental tune about the anxieties that come with growing up.

Muzi “We Are Growing”

Muzi remade the theme song for the 90s TV series, Shaka Zulu, which depicted the life of the infamous Zulu king. The song comes with loops of samples from the original song, accompanied by a drum pattern reminiscent of Kaytranada.

Prince Kaybee “Fetch Your Life” (ft. Msaki)

Prince Kaybee features one of the smoothest voices in South African jazz in his latest soulful house jam, and it will come in handy on both the dance floor and your living room.

L-Tido “10 Mac”

L-Tido turned Biggie's "10 Crack Commandments" into a 10 Mac Commandments. In the song, the rapper lays down the ground rules for navigating the dating game as a dude. One of L-Tido's top tracks and definitely a standout from 16, his latest album, which also happens to be his strongest album to date.

Boity “Bakae”

Say what you want about Boity, but the rapper knows how to deliver the bars written for her. "Bakae" is an absolute banger in which the rapper goes motswako, rapping mostly in SeTswana.

Shelton Forbez “Right Now”

A smooth R&B jam with a banging trap instrumental in which Shelton has some words for his partner's toxic hobbies.

DemiMa “Sondela”

Demi's latest single blends R&B, soul and jazz. In it, the artist appreciates a special somebody whose love hits them in the right spots. The music video shows the artist traveling in different parts of the city. "Sondela" is what happiness looks and feels like.

DJ Sliqe (ft, Darkie Fiction) “Standat”

"Standat" references old school kwaito, just like most of Darkie Fiction's music. The song's is jovial, and in the video Sliqe can be seen rolling around the hood before he hits the studio. Celebrate what's left of the summer with this one.

Seba Kaapstad “Breathe”

Seba Kaapstad recently got signed to Mello Music Group. "Breathe," which is the crew's first single under the label, seems to be a universal message to the insomniac slashies that we've all become. We live in a world where we have to work our asses off to live a comfortable life. Zoë, writing and singing in first person, seems conflicted about the idea of taking a break. Sonically, "Breathe" is a refreshing combination of the crew's different influences, from jazz to hip-hop and soul, among others. "Breathe" is as much of a Friday/Saturday night jam as it is a Sunday morning one; it will tell you to get down and chill at the same time.

Touchline “Award Shows”

A tongue-in-cheek critique of the game and its wicked ways, "Award Shows" sees the rising MC flex his lyrical skills as he questions how this whole thing works. The video pokes fun at artists who buy awards and those who shoot videos in front of houses they don't own.

B3nchMarQ “Left The City”

The song chronicles the duo's individual life stories, and the video plays out like a mini documentary of B3nchMarQ's journey.

Follow our new MZANSI HEAT playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

Artwork: Barthélémy Toguo Lockdown Selfportrait 10, 2020. Courtesy Galerie Lelong & Co

1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair Goes to Paris in 2021

The longstanding celebration of African art will be hosted by Parisian hot spot Christie's for the first time ever.

In admittedly unideal circumstances, 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair will be touching French soil in 2021. The internationally celebrated art fair devoted to contemporary art from Africa and the African diaspora will be hosted in Paris, France from January 20 - 23. With COVID-19 still having its way around the globe, finding new ways to connect is what it's all about and 1-54 is certainly taking the innovative steps to keep African art alive and well.
In partnership with Christie's, the in-person exhibits will take place at the auction house's city HQ at Avenue Matignon, while 20 international exhibitors will be featured online at Christies.com. And the fun doesn't stop there as the collaboration has brought in new ways to admire the talent from participating galleries from across Africa and Europe. The fair's multi-disciplinary program of talks, screenings, performances, workshops, and readings are set to excite and entice revelers.

Artwork: Delphine Desane Deep Sorrow, 2020. Courtesy Luce Gallery

The tech dependant program, curated by Le 18, a multi-disciplinary art space in Marrakech medina, will see events take place during the Parisian run fair, followed by more throughout February.
This year's 1-54 online will be accessible to global visitors virtually, following the success of the 2019's fair in New York City and London in 2020. In the wake of COVID-19 related regulations and public guidelines, 1-54 in collaboration with Christie's Paris is in compliance with all national regulations, strict sanitary measures, and security.

Artwork: Cristiano Mongovo Murmurantes Acrilico Sobre Tela 190x200cm 2019

1-54 founding director Touria El Glaoui commented, "Whilst we're sad not to be able to go ahead with the fourth edition of 1-54 Marrakech in February as hoped, we are incredibly excited to have the opportunity to be in Paris this January with our first-ever fair on French soil thanks to our dedicated partners Christie's. 1-54's vision has always been to promote vibrant and dynamic contemporary art from a diverse set of African perspectives and bring it to new audiences, and what better way of doing so than to launch an edition somewhere completely new. Thanks to the special Season of African Culture in France, 2021 is already set to be a great year for African art in the country so we are excited to be playing our part and look forward, all being well, to welcoming our French friends to Christie's and many more from around the world to our online fair in January."

Julien Pradels, General Director of Christie's France, said, "Christie's is delighted to announce our second collaboration with 1-54, the Contemporary African Art Fair, following a successful edition in London this October. Paris, with its strong links to the continent, is a perfect place for such a project and the additional context of the delayed Saison Africa 2020 makes this partnership all the more special. We hope this collaboration will prove a meaningful platform for the vibrant African art scene and we are confident that collectors will be as enthusiastic to see the works presented, as we are."

Artwork: Kwesi Botchway Metamorphose in July, 2020. Courtesy of the artist and Gallery 1957

Here's a list of participating galleries to be on the lookout for:


31 PROJECT (Paris, France)
50 Golborne (London, United Kingdom)
Dominique Fiat (Paris, France)
Galerie 127 (Marrakech, Morocco)
Galerie Anne de Villepoix (Paris, France)
Galerie Cécile Fakhoury (Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire/ Dakar, Senegal)
Galerie Eric Dupont (Paris, France)
Galerie Lelong & Co. (Paris, France / New York, USA)
Galerie Nathalie Obadia (Paris, France / Brussels, Belgium)
Galleria Continua (Beijing, China / Havana, Cuba / Les Moulins, France / San Gimignano, Italy / Rome, Italy)
Gallery 1957 (Accra, Ghana / London, United Kingdom)
Loft Art Gallery (Casablanca, Morocco)

Luce Gallery (Turin, Italy)
MAGNIN-A (Paris, France)
Nil Gallery (Paris, France)
POLARTICS (Lagos, Nigeria)
SEPTIEME Gallery (Paris, France)
This is Not a White Cube (Luanda, Angola) THK Gallery (Cape Town, South Africa) Wilde (Geneva, Switzerland)

For more info visit 1-54

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