MASERU — South Africa’s DJ Phobia on Friday literally set Meloling Lounge on fire as he spun the discs alongside local entertainers Kopper, Kay, Pablo, Slatz and Tseko.
The 25-year-old DJ Phobia, who is visually impaired, mesmerised revellers at the capital’s hottest nightspot as he mixed house sounds with aplomb — with no-one giving him a hand!
He too was impressed with the crowd’s response.
“I love the crowd in Lesotho and I am looking forward to coming back to this country,” DJ Phobia told Xpress People after his performance.
“I felt at home while playing for the vibrant crowd and the response that I received when I went on stage was amazing.”
Born Bongani Mbambo, the affable spin master said he got his stage name from fellow DJs and fans who were astounded by his skills on the turntables.
“The name Phobia came from my fans and some South African DJs who claimed they had developed a certain phobia when they saw me play for the first time,” he told this paper.
“They couldn’t understand how a blind guy like me was able to play so well and make the crowd happy.”
DJ Phobia said he was glad his “great following” treated him like any other “normal” DJ.
“My fans are my mentors and pillars of strength,” he said.
“They have shown appreciation for the music I play and they just keep me going day and night.”
The South African entertainer, who broke into the showbiz industry five years ago, said among the highlights of his career were his performances alongside international icons Lewi Vega and Mr V, both from New York in the United States, as well as Frank Roger from France.
He said he was also proud to have shared the stage with South African stars Oskido, Black Coffee and DJ Christos.
DJ Phobia said he wanted to inspire other visually impaired or physically challenged people not to be discouraged by their disabilities.
“Young people should come out and face the world even if they are disabled,” he said.
“There is no room for people who always shy away from the real world and feel sorry for themselves.”
When he is not on the decks, DJ Phobia is probably behind the scenes producing his own music and making beats.
He started playing the keyboard at the age of five.
DJ Phobia recorded his first mix tape the same day he was officially introduced to the South African music industry at a music conference in Johannesburg five years ago.
Amazingly, it took him an hour to know his way around the turntables, he told Xpress People.
DJ Phobia is currently working on his solo 12-track project set for release early next year.