PITCH Black Afro performing at Zoo Lake ahead of the 12th Annual MTN SA Music Awards where he was nominated for best Rap Artist. Picture: Thobeka Zazi Ndabula

Hip hop artist Pitch Black Afro appeared briefly in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court on charges of murder, premeditated murder and defeating the ends of justice.

The case took a while to be placed on the court roll as the docket was still being decided on.

The rapper appeared startled as he walked up to the dock in court 20.

The Matofotofo hitmaker, whose real name is Thulani Ngcobo, was arrested on Wednesday in connection with the death of his wife Catherine Modisane.

According to reports Modisane died at a Bed and Breakfast in Yeoville on New Year’s Eve.

A friend who did not want to be named said he was friends with the couple and had come to support the both of them in court.

“I am here to support Tricia and Thulani. I wasn’t there (when it happened). The last time I saw him we were sitting and drinking and playing music. They were performing in Mpumalanga recently so they were playing the recorded tracks that he was performing.”

The shaken man said he last saw them two weeks before the murder of Modisane.

He said he was surprised when he heard the news.

“I didn’t expect that to happen. I don’t think it is Thulani, I am not sure.”

The man said he had been friends with Ngcobo since they were teenagers and that Ngcobo always had a short temper but he wasn’t violent.

“He stuttered and that thing made him have a short temper.”

He said the couple had been booked in at a B&B in the Yeoville area because of the constant travelling they were doing for performances.

None of the family members appeared to be present in court.

The case was postponed to January 15 for a bail application pending verification of Ngcobo's home address.

Modisane's funeral is set to take place on Friday in Meadowlands, Soweto followed by a memorial service on Saturday at her family home in the same area.

@mane_mpi