Year in review: All the international acts who performed in South Africa in 2023

US singer and songwriter Maxwell performed at the DStv Delicious International Food & Music Festival at Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit, Midrand, over Heritage weekend. Picture: Instagram/dstvdeliciousfestival

US singer and songwriter Maxwell performed at the DStv Delicious International Food & Music Festival at Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit, Midrand, over Heritage weekend. Picture: Instagram/dstvdeliciousfestival

Published Dec 30, 2023

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This year we saw an influx of international artists perform in the country, whether they headlined their own stand-alone shows or were a part of larger festivals.

From comedy heavyweights such as Kevin Hart to gospel sensations Tasha Cobbs and legendary acts such as Tamia, Westlife, Robert Glasper, H.E.R, Kendrick Lamar, PJ Morton, Stormzy, Boyz II Men, Omah Lay, Tems and Bebe Winans... the list goes on.

For some, the plan was to always come to South Africa but Covid happened and we all know what spanner that threw in the works.

Some of these artists are at their peaks, others might have had better days but regardless, they came and gave fans their money's worth, creating buzz around their careers.

Grammy Award winner Robert Glasper was the headline act on the Conga Stage at this year’s Standard Bank Joy of Jazz and shuu what a performance he gave.

Soon after his performance, Mzansi concert goers flooded social media voicing their disappointment at his 40-minute set.

One Glasper devotee took to X to share how disrespected she felt, saying: “I can’t believe Robert Glasper disrespected his South African fans like that. He’s drunk out of his mind on stage.

Vertex Events were left issuing apologies after things did not go smoothly at Deborah Cox and Musiq Soulchild Magic Music Sessions in Cape Town and Pretoria.

The show was scheduled to begin at 6pm but the show only kicked off three hours later, robbing attendees of the opening acts Vusi Nova and Ami Faku.

“Unforeseen technical issues that arose during the set-up and execution of the event” left a bitter taste for music lovers who spent money on their tickets.

Other artists kept selling out their dates and had to keep adding additional concerts. Look at Boyz II Men; fans didn’t care that the iconic 90s group was no longer at their prime at the rate their shows sold out.

Even Westlife, Tamia and Rum.Gold had a sold-out run performing in the country.

Big festivals such such as Hey Neighbour, Rocking the Daisies, Friends of Amstel and DStv Delicious went all out when it came to their international acts offering mouth-watering options such as Swedish House Mafia, The Chainsmokers, Khalid, Omah Lay, Adekunle Gold, Tems, Maxwell and JID.

2024 looks to be just as exciting with American singers Lalah Hathaway and Joe kicking things off in the first quarter and since South Ahh is the place, we can expect more big names.

IOL Entertainment