New collaboration adds Afropop to Shwi Nomtekhala’s Maskandi sound
South Africa’s legendary maskandi duo, Shwi Nomtekhala, has teamed up with Afropop singers and songwriters Nathi Mankayi and Mnqobi Yazo for their single Uthando.
Mandla Xaba and Rodgers Magubane, who make up the duo, said Maskandi was one of those genres that could reach certain places.
“We have been doing a lot to get it to the forefront and with the previous successful songs we have had, like Ngafa, we found that when we sing too much of the genre there are people who don’t understand us.
“We decided try our hand with a maskandi and Afropop fusion song, to see if people would embrace the sound,” said Xaba (better known as Shwi).
The duo said they worked with Mankayi and Yazo because they appreciated their work as young artists.
“We loved working with them because of their love for music. We have already collaborated with artists like Kid X and Cassper Nyovest. These artists show love and talk about love in their music so we had to rope them in.”
The song is a mellow mid-tempo reflection on the loss of love and broken promises.
The talented singers take turns crooning about the trials of romantic relationships and no longer believing in love.
“We talk about the ins and outs of love. How we got to that point of losing love and not showing it to our partners anymore.”
Xaba said they were working on an album and they already had many Afropop/maskandi singles ready to be heard.
“What we are doing now is to finish off the album with more tracks, we are looking at maybe a tracklist of 10 songs,” said Xaba.
The album promises to be a fresh infusion of traditional folk music and maskandi pop, as well as contemporary Afrobeat, a sound that fans both old and new can enjoy.