Kommanda stays true to Tšepe sound
SOTHO Hop pioneer, Kommanda Obbs, says he will stay true to his distinctive sound despite signing on to South Africa’s Native Rhythm Records.
The Maputsoe-born rapper released his debut single under the Native Rhythms stable on Friday after signing on last October. Titled Tauerora (roaring lion), the single was distributed on social media and on the link http://www.datafilehost.com/D/D8E085DD.
Ahead of the single’s launch, Native Rhythms released a statement on Wednesday saying Tauerora was an adaptation of the song 1er Gaou by Ivorian artists Magic System. The statement also revealed that the single was a precursor to Kommanda Obbs’ upcoming six-track extended project (EP) Keteu to be released in March.
The record label’s owner, Sipho Sithole, said they signed on Kommanda Obbs in line with their goal of recruiting culturally-driven artistes.
“The signing of Kommanda Obbs is the continuation of our resolve to becoming a true Pan-African talent management and he is a conduit for realising that objective. We are honoured by his acceptance of our offer to work with us and grow his career,” Sithole said.
The Native Rhythm Records stable also includes The Soil, Zulu Boy and Cama Gwini among other popular South African artists.
Kommanda Obbs told Xpress People from his new base in Randburg, South Africa that Tauerora was meant to inspire young people to tell their own stories.
“Since the release of my debut album Tšepe Sethua Majoe in 2011, I have always appealed to African youths to tell stories of their own continent and not let people from afar do it for them,” said the rapper whose real name is Obatia Chapi.
“In the single, I aim to instil confidence in young Africans, especially those within the SADC region, to tell their stories in different artistic forms especially now that we are exposed to different mediums.”
Kommanda Obbs said he would continue with his unique Tšepe rap style which fuses traditional Sesotho sounds and wordplay with Hip Hop.
“Native Rhythms signed me because they appreciated my uniqueness, so they don’t intend to change my style of music,” he said.
“Although I am working with new producers, I still have executive control on my music. I won’t change my music but am willing to grow as an artist.”
Tauerora’s music video, which was shot in Thaba-Bosiu would be released three weeks’ time, Kommanda Obbs said.
“The video’s release would be followed by the six-track EP, Keteu, which will drop towards the end of March,” he said.
“On the EP, I worked with prominent producer, Thasman, who has worked with the likes of HHP, Zola, Tuks and Unathi among others. Fans can also expect features from heavyweights such as Zakwe, Reason and Tribute Mbuweni.”
The D2aMajoe leader also said he had taken to the SA entertainment scene like a duck to water, since he already had a fan base in the country.
“When I relocated to South Africa, it was not difficult to blend in because a number of prominent artists already knew me,” he said.
“I was affirmed by the likes of PRO and Khuli Chana who told me I was good at what I do and encouraged me to continue making my country proud.
“I already have a fan-base in South Africa of Basotho based in the country and people who visit Lesotho on a regular basis.”
Kommanda Obbs said local artists were failing to take advantage of their relationships with major SA artists to advance their careers.
“I am not the only artist from Lesotho acquainted with prominent artists from South Africa. But the undoing of most local acts is only boasting about knowing such people without using the connections to raise their profiles,” he said.