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A night of awe at the #BETXAFRICA

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All roads led to the Ticketpro Dome in the city of Gold, Johannesburg this past Saturday for are of the biggest lifestyle and entertainment event to take place on the continent – BET Experience Africa –trending under the hashtag, BETXAFRICA.

The event, the first of its kind, organised by BET Africa, a channel showing on DStv, marked the first time that the BET Experience took place outside the United States of America. And it lived to its hype of bringing only the crème de la crème, of music, comedy, fashion, as well as motivational speakers. For 24 hours, multitudes of fun lovers descended on the venue, and partied like rock stars.

One thing that media personalities from several African countries including Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Botswana, Zambia and Ghana noted was the amount of work that went into putting an event of this magnitude. It also became evident once, one walked into the venue that a lot of manpower and infrastructure had been deployed to give revellers the best Christmas outing, one that will forever remain etched in their memories. 

The most important event of the day for those who were itching to dance till their feet hurt was reserved for the evening. On the line-up were top performers who have over time mastered the art of live performance. Starting off the mouth-watering line-up was none other than Tanzania’s Diamond – the young performer left no stones unturned, and gave his fans a thrilling set.

Next up was the sexy Nigerian born Flavour of Nwa baby fame. The minute he took to the stage everything changed, the man who is popular for his rubber waist was in his best element and brought the house down. He was particularly on point when he completed his set with the performance of his most popular hit, Nwa baby, sending all in the Dome into a frenzy.

Even the VIP section where the likes of the minister of Sports, Fikile Mbalula was seated turned into something else, with many silently shaking what their mamas gave them. Others who also held their own was the Twitter king of South Africa, AKA who for once was not spewing bile on social media, but was using his talent to spread love. For once, people were not looking for a corner to hide, but were embracing him and his music.

American rapper, Young Thug making a grand entrance on stage with a heavy jacket that looked like a heavy blanket sold at Oriental Plaza, also rewarded his fans for their loyalty. He was short and sweet, and even for those who could not grasp his lyrics, they still enjoyed his perf.

The last two performances of the night were by U.S born award winning artists Mary J.Blige and Maxwell. MJB was in her best element and she was a marvel to watch.

Pausing between performances to give her fans a bit of wisdom, she thrilled with performances of several of her all time hits. Maxwell, of ‘This woman’s work,’ who was also the headline artist, also delivered, taking time to spread love and showcase why he is one of the best performers in the worlds right now. Flexing his muscles on stage, and taking routines that appeared like he was in an exercise session, he beautifully concluded the first of many BET Experience Africa events.

Prior to the main festival taking place in the evening, dozens of revellers trickled into the venue, both young and old, all looking forward to a one of a kind experience. They were treated to several build-up events that took place at the venue including a fashion show featuring none other than Africa’s top designer, David Tlale who recently returned from New York Fashion week with his retro themed designs. 

On the one end, those who were looking for motivation were given the opportunity to listen to inspirational talks from gurus that included South Africa’s Sports Minister, Fikile Mbalula, Khanyi Dlomo a media mogul, Amadou Fall, Beverly Bond of Black Girls Rocks, Greg Maloka, as well as Stephen Hill.

For those who were looking for some light entertainment that could loosen their jaws, they were treated to the best of Comedy with stand-up comedians that included David Kau, Jason Goliath, Kenya’s Churchill and many more.

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CHARMA GAL DROPS NEW ALBUM

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GOING PLACES:The singer has a new offering

CharmaGal is back with a bang. After a hiatus, following her hit Jabu last year, she has released an all Setswana thriller album just in time for festive.

The local music sensational is back into her stardom feat, the album brings yet another set of tracks in her 8-track album titled Lekgamu la bananyana. Touch Records in Gaborone officially released the album this past week.

During a media brief held at Botswana Craft in Gaborone this past week, CharmaGal revealed that she has been working hard on the album thus having high expectations on it. According to Charma, Lekgamu la bananyana is a notch high than her previous music deliverables.

Speaking to Vibe a day before boarding a plane to the United Kingdom where she was performing alongside South Africa’s BabesWodumo, she said that what makes her unique is staying to her craft. The Mmokolodi hit-maker said that it is giving what you are to the people that then opportunities arise for artists.

“People need to stay true to their uniqueness, this new album represent my style of delivering music, that represents my key and my melody that is why it is easy for people to react to it,” shared CharmaGal.

She also said that piracy is a concern in the music fraternity, adding that she has targets she has set for herself in regards to the number of copies she wants to sell on the album. “New technology remains a mystery for us artists, in a day after the release of the album, people will be she sharing out the music through Whatsapp and other social media networks and that is amazing.”

Meanwhile, a week after the release of the album, track 3, dubbed Banyana, is driving CharmaGal fans crazy. The song has already been played on various radio stations in the country. In the song, CharmaGal says that she does not need to get to work because she has hangover garnered from the weekend. **The album is available at most music stores.

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Shamele drops solo kwaito offering

Irene Shone

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omolemo Thepa aka Shamele says kwaito music has taken out the artiste in him and he plans to elevate the genre as time goes. The 27-year-old recently released his first-ever solo single dubbed, ‘Dula S’tilo’.

He tells Vibe that the new single was actually written to honour the president of Botswana, Mokgweetsi Masisi as he sat on the presidency throne. He explains that he has been in the music industry for the past six years, featuring other artistes but decided to [produce his solo work this year.

“I have written this song and composed it to dedicate it to Masisi as a way of welcoming him to his new position,” he says.Shamele is confident that having worked with a variety of well-established artistes has given him light and direction to grow the Kwaito genre. Asked why he chose Kwaito of all other genres, he said that Kwaito is unstoppable and just needs nurturing.

“I found Kwaito in existence when I was growing up, and I have never come across any boring rhythm of Kwaito music. It is just unstoppable and thus, I want to be associated to it.”
He also shares with Vibe that local talent kept him motivated to also have a dream of becoming a solo artiste.

“The Real Magosi group inspired me to be where I am today together with all the local artistes in general because I embrace local music.” Shamele further says that he takes pride in the fact that he has already performed his song in the president’s presence recently in Moshupa at an event.

He also appreciates the positive feedback that he already has on his new work. Dula S’tilo currently enjoys airplay at Duma Fm, RB1 and RB2. The single was produced at True-African Studios. Shamele says that at the moment, he is focused on building his brand and give his fans and the local music industry the best.

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