Playlisted on countless community and campus radio stations countrywide, Maxhoseni recently performed at Africa’s biggest hip-hop gathering – Back to the City. It was here that CHEKA Digital had a chat with him about where he started, where he’s headed with his music as well as the challenges he has faced in his odyssey.
Hailing from Comfimvaba in the Eastern Cape and having spent several years in Cape Town where his rap career took flight, the time has come for him to take his music to the whole country.
CHEKA Digital: You’ve been in the game for quite sometime. Are you content about the level you are at right now?
Maxhoseni: Well if the music industry were a walk in the park and I had abundant resources to help build my career and I would still be where I am now, then my answer would be a definite ‘No’ but that’s not how the industry and how life goes, so yes I am content. I have come a long way, have met a lot of challenges, learning curves too and I have the strongest support system; one most artists considered ‘successful’ can only dream of – my family and my fans. Andikafiki apho ndibhalele khona, and nowhere close but I’m right on track and on schedule.
You are known as a conscious Xhosa rapper. Could you explain your music to us.
I try to make music for people to relate to, so when I rap about situations you’ll see I’ve been there with you.
Would you encourage other rappers to rap in vernacular?
What’s most important is that a person writes in the language that he is comfortable with and fluent in. That is the only way that a person can be true to themselves and the message can be conveyed, it’s all about self-expression.
You have quite a huge following. Could you let us know how you achieved that without getting airplay in major radio stations?
I got fans (including fellow artists) that listen to me because I never pretended to be someone I’m not. If the people can relate to you, then you got something special.
You have a relationship with your supporters/fans as opposed to most rappers who are quite egotistical. How important is this and how do you manage this relationship?
Let people get to know you as a person, meaning when they see you they can have a conversation with you about your music or whatever. People want to at least get a feel of the person that they might be supporting.
What are your thoughts on the mixtape business and South African artists in general?
There’s a lot of talented artists out there but the problem is that they have no management to guide them and are forced to work alone. They have to work extra hard to push their mixtapes and I am one of those artists. This makes it so much harder being an artist and also making sure that your work is distributed and available to all fans around South Africa
Take us through your latest mixtape Music For The Listeners.
Music For The Listeners was released in March of this year. I have worked with some talented artists and producers, and this mixtape consists of songs which carry a message of hope, party songs which compel one to forget about the troubles of this world and just dance, and also a selection of love songs that will give the ladies goosebumps (laughs).
You are from EC but you started blossoming in Cape Town. Could you let us know why you moved back to EC.
Being in one place for a long time can take its toll on an individual especially if there is no progress happening. Since I have been back in the Eastern Cape things have been going very well for me and my music.
You’ve always had issues with Cape Town rappers and hip-hop heads. What was the problem?
If they see or hear that an artist is doing great and hustling hard, they don’t take some time out to salute the artist. They just hate on the progress.
Give us some insight into your relationship with iFani.
iFani is one hard-working rapper that I appreciate having the opportunity to know. I first heard of him when I came across his song called “Hola Hater” on the Hype Magazine Mixtape so I searched for him on Facebook. We started talking and I complimented him on his unique style, and that’s when we became friends. In 2010, I was performing at Roger Soulstar’s Pre-Launch in Central (P.E) and iFani was also in P.E at the time so we arranged to meet. He wasn’t going to stay for long at the event so we met outside. When he arrived I thought, “This reserved guy can’t be iFani, I’m sure he’s still about to step out of the car” haha. Since then he has been someone I can constantly go to for advice.
Your crew Password, you fellas have been quiet for a minute. Has the crew disbanded?
We agreed to work on our solo mixtapes and feature a song done by all of us as a crew within our individual projects – so that’s where we’re at right now.
Word is you are working on an album due next year…
When my album drops, a lot will finally be explained. So if anyone has ever wondered if I’ve been betrayed, hurt, or if I made mistakes in relationships myself, my music is going to answer all of that. It may be my story, but it will relate to and be many others’ story as well.
And is there a chance we’ll finally get to know who the track “Honey” was written for? (On the forthcoming album?)
Lol yeah once the album is out then I will reveal who this “Honey” that I have been rapping about is.
Your biggest achievement so far is undoubtedly performing at Back To The City. Take us through that experience, what it has done for you and how the opportunity came about.
Being a performer at the BTTC 2013 was a huge achievement in my music career and an experience I will never forget. Osmic invited me to perform at the festival and it felt good to be recognised for my hard work. A lot of doors have opened for me since that performance and though I cannot get into detail, there is a lot to come from me very soon.
Any last words?
My new CD Music For The Listeners is NOW AVAILABLE… Contact 0845578823 to place your order
Compiled And Written By : @SabzaPassword