”If you are not at Durban July, you have an excuse to be at the Soweto Theater, because the Muffinz will be performing,” laughs Keke of the local band The Muffinz.
As Youth month draws to an end, IOL chatted to the five piece band about all things youth and their performance at the Sounds of Soweto tonight.
Sounds of Soweto, which takes place on the last Friday of the month, is an opportunity to celebrate the music legends of yesterday while also discovering the musical voices of tomorrow.
“Some of us in the band grew up in Soweto, so when we were approached about performing at the Sounds of Soweto, it was no brainer. We said: ‘Yes, let’s do it!"
The Muffinz was formed in 2010 when Mthae, Simz and Atomza met while singing at the University of Johannesburg choir. The following year Skabz and Keke joined the band.
Their big break came when they won a competition at Cool Runnings in Melville. Their performance was so powerful that it made one of the judges cry.
“We realised that day that we could do this,” says Atomza.
Asked about the inspiration behind the hashtag #WeAreTheYouthOf2017, Muffinz member Simz explained: “It’s way to inspire the youth, especially in the times we’re living and with everything that’s going around with women. As a band, we have always advocate for women justice,” he said.
Talking about “women”, I asked the guys about the artists that have been accused of abusing their partners. Arthur, Zola and Mdu recently came under the spotlight for alleged mishandling of the women in their lives.
“I think we need to recognise the problem in its brutality. Someone beating a woman is someone beating a woman. It’s the same thing regardless of who’s doing it. As the Muffinz, we’ve always recognised this, we’ve also sang about it and we knew that this is a thing and now it has come to the light.
“For me personally, I would like to urge all the men out there to STOP this thing, it’s really women abuse,” said Simz.
So what should the youth do to combat this scourge? Boycott the music or continue to supporting the artists, hoping they will change.
“I think we should not punish the artists by destroying their careers. I don’t think that’s a fair way of punishing the person,” says Mthae, adding that the emphasis should be on education.
“I don’t think sabotaging someone’s career or not supporting it in a way will help them to overcome an issue like that because it’s something that’s isolated and different from their career. It’s personal.
“Some people whose careers have been destroyed would never come back, but does that mean that the lesson has been learnt or they will continue beating people in private because there’s nothing to destroy?” he added.
Has the Youth struggle change from that of 1976 to now.
“I don’t want to dilute anything of the youth of 1976. What they did for us was huge, we've got to give respect, first of all. I think the struggle is a little different yet at the same time also similar. We all want freedom in some way or another. We all want to build the future for the youth to come. I think that’s where the similarities lie,” says Simz.
* Catch The Muffinz performing at the Soweto Theater Tonight, June 30. Tickets are sold at R130 at Webtickets or at the venue (Soweto Theater).