Tributes pour in for DJ Kevin ’Rebellious’ Naidoo
Tributes pour in for DJ Kevin ’Rebellious’ Naidoo

DJs pay tribute to DJ Kevin ’Rebellious’ Naidoo

By Chanelle Lutchman Time of article published Feb 24, 2021

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Durban - Before DJ Kevin "Rebellious" Naidoo ended his hour-long live-stream on Facebook on Thursday, he told viewers that he intended to take a break. He said this was one of the saddest days of his life. Naidoo then placed his palms together, raised his arms and mouthed the words “thank you, bye”.

On Friday, the popular Durban DJ, who entered the club scene in the early 1990s, died of a heart attack at his home in Phoenix.

Naidoo's funeral was held on Monday at the Umhlatuzana Civic Hall and a private cremation followed. His family declined to comment.

Local DJs told the POST that the 47-year-old was one of the best in the industry

“He could hold a crowd for three hours and longer,” said DJ Babs.

Dj Babs (left) and DJ Auzi (right) at the candlelight vigil for Naidoo on Saturday

"Kevin and I started deejaying together in 1990 at a club called Creations in Unit 2, Chatsworth, where we grew up. On a Friday and Saturday, it was a nightclub and on a Sunday it was a supper club. Kevin knew exactly what he needed to do to pull a crowd and what music to play to get the people on their feet. Sometimes he would break out and rap, which further entertained people."

He said Naidoo grew up in Chatsworth and moved away for a while but he never forgot his roots.

"He still visited his area (Bayview) whenever he could and he made sure that in December he donated Christmas hampers to poor families. I watched his last live-stream and when he said he would take a break, no one expected that this would happen. We have really lost a gem.”

On Saturday, DJ Babs and others in the industry held a candlelight vigil in Bayview to honour Naidoo.

He said it was their way to bid farewell to a friend and to honour his memory.

DJ Auzi, who met Naidoo in 2016, said: “I had my first gig at Cape 2 Cairo and he was there. He encouraged me to keep at it and always called me to check up on my deejaying and to motivate me. I was in China last year and he called to tell me to continue deejaying from there and it was because of his faith and encouragement that I followed through.”

He said he also participated in DJ competitions that Naidoo hosted and he made it to the semi-finals at one competition.

“His passion was to bring out the best in people and to show them that they could achieve anything. He wanted us to shine no matter what. His death leaves a void for us now.”

Since the early 1990s, Naidoo won numerous awards for deejaying. In 1991, he won the South African National Battle of the DJs regional title. A year later, he won the Regional All Round Groove DJ Championship in the Technics National Battle of the DJ finals in Cape Town and the Best of the Best DJ Battle in 1994. Naidoo also hosted radio shows at East Coast Radio and Lotus FM.

In 2019, Naidoo received the Panache Men of Valour Award from Panache International.

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