Image: Album cover art

Listen to AKA's Posthumous Album 'Mass Country'

The late South African rapper spent his last days ecstatic to share the album with the world, and now we know why.

It's been two weeks since South African hip-hop star Kiernan Forbes, aka AKA was gunned down in the streets of Durban, alongside close friend and celebrity chef Tebello 'Tibz' Motsoane. As the Forbes family lays their son to rest this week, fans of the highly favored rapper have been bestowed with AKA's sixth and final album, 'Mass Country'. And what a treat it is.

Keep reading...Show less
(Vth Season)

AKA Was a South African Hip-Hop Icon

While he had his shortcomings as a person, one thing is undebatable: AKA will take his place as one of South Africa's greats.

AKA was by no means the first South African hip-hop artist to become a crossover superstar. HHP, PRO, Teargas, Khuli Chana and the likes before him were massive, but they moved with a kind of humility that you couldn’t associate with AKA. Some called it arrogance, he and his fans called it confidence, knowing and believing in yourself.

His double superlative “Supa Mega” moniker emphasized just how highly AKA thought of himself. The man was larger than life; he spoke with a natural conviction and walked in surefooted strides. In the early 2010s, AKA shattered boundaries when he became the first SA hip-hop superstar to rap exclusively in English. Rappers like ProVerb, Stogie T and Zubz before him were successful niche artists that catered to staunch hip-hop heads, but AKA was huge. His debut album, Altar Ego spawned hits such as his breakout, "Victory Lap," "I Want It All," "All I Know" and "Bang."

He was impossible to ignore. He swept the Metro FM Awards in 2011, giving pop star Zahara a run for her money. From around that time, he became known as The Prince of SA Hip-Hop.


With his platinum-certified sophomore album, Levels, AKA decided to go even bigger. Sampling dance music when every rapper was sampling kwaito in the mid-2010s, AKA created an album with a sound so expansive he started performing with a live band. The records on Levels were extravagant and had a pop sheen that made his music even more palatable to the non-hip-hop fan; songs like "Congratulate," "Sunshine" and the pan-African pop juggernaut "All Eyes On Me" which featured Burna Boy, Da L.E.S and JR.

But rap bangers like "Run Jozi," "Sim Dope," "Kontrol" and "Pressure" kept him tethered to hip-hop and made sure no rapper wanted the smoke from him. 2015’s "Composure," a vicious diss track aimed chiefly at his arch enemy Cassper Nyovest, proved to those who still needed convincing that AKA was one of the best to ever rhyme in Southy.

Keep reading...Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox


AKA's 'Mass Country' Album Will Be Released Posthumously

Late rapper AKA's management has revealed that his album will be released as scheduled on February 24.

Memorial Services for AKA Will Be Open to the Public

The public service will take place on Friday, February 17 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg. There will also be a private funeral where AKA will be put to rest.

South African Rapper AKA Has Died

The 35-year-old performer was allegedly gunned down in Durban, Friday night.

AKA and Nasty C Team Up in "Lemons (Lemonade)" Music Video

The South African duo recently released the music video for their joint record.


Emotional Abuse Is Insidious, Perhaps Even More Than Physical Abuse

As gender-based violence continues to plague the world over, it's important to also highlight the dire effects of emotional abuse, long before it manifests in the physical.