Amapiano has become a buzz word particularly in Southern Africa. It is no secret that the loud beat that will have you dancing and grooving at any time of the day, is a brain child of the South Africans where it originated from early back in 2012, before it firmly took its rightful place in the music industry. The unique beats have taken the African continent by storm for now, many artists from different countries are riding on that beat; be it those in Western Africa like Davido, Niniola, Phyno and Falz just to name a few big stars. As a big fan of all different genres, l had to pen something down about Amapiano, because to those who haven’t come across it, it’s high time you have a feel of the wonder of this music.
Amapiano was created to make people dance, even when they are in the lowest of the low moods, Amapiano has the magical touch of making you feel better. Hearing it will lessen the burdens that you have to constantly bear, those chips on our shoulders. At the same time, l actually believe it has a healing power to it, somehow, because it exudes happiness as the drum beats and percussion sounds were uniquely and distinctively fused. Many Amapiano dance song challenges have gone viral on the internet, such as: the John Vuli Gate song, sung by Mapara A Jazz ft. Ntosh Gaz and Colano. This song had many people from both the ageing population to the young dancing to it. Also, people were singing along to the funny chorus which most of us could make out and understand the words of. It is said the song was inspired by the Oscar winning film “Tsotsi” and that is where the catchy phrase was adapted from. To this end, proving how good the unique loud Amapiano beats are, that are touching the hearts of many.
Some young ladies became instant stars overnight when the video they posted dancing to this song wearing their all black little outfits went viral on the internet. Again, emojs and their pics were splashed everywhere on the internet. Needless to say, artists from other countries made their own version of John Vuli Gate, this time in their mother tongues. Take for instance Van Choga a popular and funny Zimbabwean comedian cum artist. Truth be told, even without understanding most of the lyrics, still these Amapiano songs will make you want to put on your dance shoes. All this signifies how Amapiano unites people, especially, during this time when we are facing endless lockdowns. It is serving its purpose of shifting people’s minds from the deadly virus and other daily troubles.
The beauty and ear arresting tones of amapiano beats have even won a place on Trace Urban and Trace Africa were it is given a full hour to the relief and joy of all Amapiano lovers. It is so powerful that it can lead even those with two left feet to give it a try on the dance floor. Nonetheless, no one does it better than the creators of the beat where, in South Africa, they dance creatively, showcasing all types of moves that will leave you in awe. One Zimbabwean born, South Africa based artist by the name Sha Sha was even awarded the BET best international act for 2020 for her song “Something about you” ft. Dj Maphorisa and Kabza De Small were she was riding on an Amapiano beat. In addition, she made history of being the first Zimbabwean to scoop a BET award which was another feather in her cap. She became an instant sensation on the Amapiano sounds for her deep and airy tones. Once again, she even landed a singing role on the movie, “Coming to America 2”, a collaboration she did alongside Tellaman and Oxlade although this time around they didn’t use the Amapiano beat on this sound track.
Amapiano, l can safely say, is the new sound trending and we have to give it the kudos that it deserves because even if you sing in your mother tongue or English still it will come out good. Indeed, South Africans are good at their craft. Thus, Amapiano is proudly South African all the way, and it has put the African continent on the global music map yet again, which is a good thing. They have defied all odds and they continuously come up with new sounds because living this life is all about going the extra length of coming up with new innovations that even have the ability to disrupt the status quo, while upholding our African culture at the same time. For example the Venda princesses “Makhadzi” and “Sho Madjozi” who never fail to showcase their unique culture by their language and dressing. They have even managed to put their minority group on the map because of their saccharine, dulcet tones that have merged well with the Amapiano beat. Talk of Sho Madjozi’s new track “Jamani” or Makhadzi’s track ft. Moonchild Sanelly “Amadoda.” These songs do it well for me, even when my mind is blank, l can feel ideas starting to hatch just at the mere drum beat and by the time it hits its climax, l would have a tangible plan of action on the ground.
When you talk about Amapiano, you shouldn’t leave out the good works being done by the Dj’s themselves. They are the guys behind the scenes and for that reason we won’t let them be unsung heroes. Some of them are Kabza De Small, Dj Maphorisa, Master Kg, Dj Call me, Dj Tira, Major League, Prince Benza, Mr. Brown, Vigro Deep, Dj Cleo, Dj Zandimaz, Prince Kaybee and Mas Musiq to name just a few. The list is endless because all these guys have hit songs riding on the amapiano beat such as my all-time favorite “Mi amor” which both the dance moves by Qwesta Kufet and his lyrics can only be described as lit and to the point after all we all have our Mi amors out there and some of you are yet to find theirs. To this end, some artists are even diversifying and showing their versatility by embarking on this Amapiano beats journey, like the award winning Hip hop artists Casper Nyovest and Riky Rick who are doing so well at this genre too. Likewise ladies such as Busiswa and Nokwazi are faring well too for whatever these seasoned artists touch does tend to turn into Midas gold, lyrically wise. As a result, many artists have appeared on the scene, have struck gold and made a career out of Amapiano and some of them are the inseparable duo Kaygee Daking and Bizizi as well Focalistic in a sea of others. On that note, l do urge you all to go on Youtube and try out this new genre, especially for those who have the daring spirit to try and test out new waters. Proudly South African, Amapiano will do for you, at any time of day and wherever you are.
You might even want to exercise to these songs and sweat it all out. Undoubtedly, House music has a way of giving life a general bright outlook and this can be testified even by the popular “Jerusalem” song by Master Kg ft. Nomcebo which came close to becoming a global national anthem of hope in this Covid-19 era. Generally, house music has firm deep roots in South Africa, no wonder why Amapiano has managed to take the world by storm as well.
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Abigirl Phiri is a Ph.D student in commerce, free-lance writer, poet, International Ambassador of Peace, GBV activist, social entrepreneur, talent manager and an international marketer. More of her work can be found on her Facebook Page: Words are forever.