With just a few days to the highly anticipated Afropunk festival, Kwaito legends Trompies promises a world-class performance as one of the headliners of this year’s musical experience coming to Jozi for the second time.
Chatting to group member and music pioneer Eugene Mthethwa, it was very clear that Trompies is ecstatic to be part of the movement that celebrates African music especially now that kwaito is making waves globally.
“We are very excited to be part of this year’s Afropunk festival because every show presents an opportunity for us to reach out to more of our fans and each time it is good to see different audiences coming to appreciate our music considering that in SA it is very popular that people talk about Kwaito dying".
Mthethwa insists that contrary to popular belief that kwaito is dying, the proudly South African music is taking centre stage locally and abroad.
“For years people said kwaito is dying. When house music came they (the critics) said Kwaito is dying, now we're in the era of hip-hop and they been saying kwaito is dying but contrary to that you see now the hip-hop guys doing (sampling) our music. KO did 'Ukujaiva' while Cassper Nyovest did 'Doc Shebeleza'.
According to Mthethwa the difference between kwaito and hip hip-hop is that hip-hop has more content as opposed to kwaito because “we didn’t we didn't concentrate a lot on content and long verses, all we wanted to do was make people dance”.
As one of the founders of kwaito nearly three decades ago, Mthethwa says the kwaito revolution is taking over the world as he tells us about a global fitness program called Bokwa.
“People will be shocked that kwaito is so big in the world right now. Bokwa is the second biggest fitness program in the world, influenced by kwaito music, it comes from South African. It is currently in 73 countries around the world. “We've bypassed the airwaves and went straight into the gyms, into the headphones, direct into the ears of the people who are using our music to exercise.
"We release the sequence every 60 days that is worth one hour, 2 minutes of each song, which is about 30 songs in each sequence. We have 60 000 instructors and thousands of people dancing to our music worldwide.
Mthethwa says there are talks about putting Bokwa tunes on a digital platform such as iTunes to create a platform to ensure fans all over the world get access the music.
“We are in talks with iTunes to create a Bokwa iTunes, with full songs. Our aim is to bombard the world with our music like never before. This platform also opens doors for local artists to be shine on the global stage.”
On what can be expected from Trompies this weekend, he said: “Our stage presence is very important, we like to capture people’s attention with song and dance, so our fans can expect a world-class performance. We have not dropped the standard despite all of us being in our 50's...We can still do the vosho ," chuckles Mthethwa.
Trompies’ latest album is due to release in 2019.
Afropunk Joburg takes place at Constitution Hill in Johannesburg on December 30 and 31. Visit afropunkfest.com/johannesburg for more info.