The last time I spoke to DJ Sliqe, he had just released a single Do It For Me. At the time of writing this, I was listening to that very same song. The single was what was meant to be his second studio album, Injayam Vol 2. However, in the last few months, things have changed. Sliqe has opted to put Injayam Vol 2 on hold, for now, and has released a different album all together.
Titled Navy Black, it was released last week and features a number of well-known South African performers.
“So here is what happened: when I was in studio putting together Injayam Vol 2, we were making a lot of music, and the creative processing was not coming to an end and I did not want it to. So as we were making the music, I was putting the groovy tracks on one side, the hip hop ones on the other,” he said.
Although he had every intention of releasing Injayam Vol 2 this year, he said he could not ignore Navy Black.
According to Sliqe, once he had the album together, he envisioned which voice was best suited for the song, especially since Navy Black is filled with some of the biggest stars in the country. It features Kwesta, AKA, Emtee and US rapper Sy Ari Da Kid.
Sliqe said that Navy Black specifically produced for the black people in this country. “Black people are going to relate to every song on this album, whether you stay in the township or suburb.
“It’s an album to entertain but it’s also got some deep messages that I hope the listener picks up on and understands. It’s great to make music that keeps people dancing or entertained, but at some point you need to speak to people on a level that’s deeper than the superficial.”
He added that he also named it Navy Black because navy black is a darker shade of black that addresses the real issues of black people.
“Being black is cool, man – as black people we need to be confident in ourselves, in our talents and beauty. I will continue to push black consciousness and I am always going to produce African music, regardless.
“I want to collaborate with other South African and African artists. I want our hip hop to be loved beyond American hip hop, I want our sound to resonate with its people. The more we gravitate to our sound, as music producers and listeners, the better,” he said.
Sliqe added that musicians needed to start making music that people could relate to. He also admitted to recently facing one of his biggest career challenges.
“There are always challenges, the normal stuff like bad people taking advantage of you, but recently I was approached by an investor. And I had to make a choice: do I want to continue my journey on my own, the way I want to do it, or let an investor give me money and do what they want to with my brand.
“I had to ask myself a lot of questions. I am not in the music game for fame or fortune, I just want to make great music, so I chose myself,” he said.