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Thorii wants to be the voice of his generation

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Bataung Moeketsi

SINGER and songwriter Thorii hopes to one day become the voice of his generation and to be remembered for not only setting but breaking boundaries.

Born Thorela Rethabile Tsikoane in Ha-Abia, Thorii started pursuing a Sound Engineering degree this year at the Academy of Sound Engineering in Auckland Park, Johannesburg.

The 21-year-old has recently achieved some notable milestones internationally with the release of his joint album alongside India’s ZZ and the latter’s cousin Lil Littlez dubbed DEGENERATES on 3 July 2020.

Hip hop and afrobeats elements are heard on the tracks produced by ZZ himself and Lesotho’s Just Slick on the Beat among others.

The album was engineered by ZZ and Grammy-nominated Brendan Ferry aka Bren on the Boards.

One of the stand-out songs MOOD features established American artiste Guapdad 4000 who was engaged by ZZ.

Thorii travelled to Los Angeles in November 2019 where ZZ is currently based to complete DEGENERATES which they had all started working on while in New Delhi in June 2019.

Since being made available across all major digital platforms the trio’s album has grossed over 500 000 all-time streams on Spotify India alone.

The album debuted at number 10 on iTunes India and climbed to seventh in the hip hop and rap category. The DEGENERATES has also cracked the top 50 charts across all genres on iTunes India.

Thorii on Friday told the Xpress People that these achievements were “massive” as they were among international artistes like Gunna and Lil Wayne on the charts who are heavily listened to on account of India’s large market.

“Within the first week of its release, the album surpassed 500 000 hits which is absurd,” Thorii said.

“Right now, we are counting the milestones and we are trying to keep the album going by ensure that we market it to the right people and listeners,” he said adding the ultimate goal was to make the album “timeless”.

While attending primary school at the American International School of Lesotho from 2009 to 2013 Thorii had auditioned for a school play on the movie Hairspray which also happened to be one of his favourite musicals.

He initially thought of himself as a rapper while at Machabeng College from June 2015 to 2016 but decided to focus on singing after becoming known as the “hook guy”.

“This has always been what I consider a gift from God.

“That’s all it has been and I kept growing from that and learning how to sing and making my voice sound in a certain way to portray different emotions,” he said.

Throughout his childhood, the young singer lived in different cities and counties and eventually moved to New Delhi in 2013 on account of his parents’ work.

Thorii’s interest in creating music peaked while attending high school at the American Embassy School in New Delhi as he had started writing and recording on his own and that is where his relationship with ZZ began.

However, he was particularly drawn to his friends back in Lesotho who had begun to release their music online as a group called Hoanch, which he eventually joined upon his return in 2015.

He said he began to persistently pursue a career in music in 2016 and has gone on to release a joint project with Lil Kush and Keith titled Stars Aligned in 2017 and his first solo endeavour City Full of Lost Souls & Broken Hearts in 2018.

Thorii’s breakout 2018 single Icy has amassed over one million hits on SoundCloud and over 150 000 hits on Apple Music and Spotify.

He recently took to social media to clamour for Basotho’s support for his work and says he hopes to connect more with the local audience while staying true to himself and letting his music speak for itself.

“I have invested in my career and I want to make timeless music that is going to forever be engraved into the hearts of people and leave a lasting memory,” Thorii said.

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