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DJ Darkboy Masey takes house music industry by storm

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It is a sweltering weekday morning when I meet Masego Ntshontsi, popularly known as DJ DarkBoy Masey for an interview. He is currently making waves in the house music industry but there is none of the pomp one would expect of a local artist making it big in neighbouring South Africa. He arrives alone, dressed in simple jeans, plain T-shirt and sneakers. The only sign of lavishness is the expensive-looking Gucci watch on his wrist. He is punctual, and waits patiently while I finish my morning cuppa. He comes across as shy and reserved. To break the ice, I ask if it is true that he had a fling with Zodwa waBantu as a certain gossip page reported. He laughs and exclaims: “Oh no, that was not true. Zodwa and I are worlds apart: our personalities are different, we wouldn’t click.

The whole thing was blown out of proportion.” He breaks into a grin when we talk music and he chats animatedly about his journey in the music industry. His latest single, Konakele featuring Mzansi songstress Mpumi of Yawe fame, is on high rotation on radio and television. The music video has already premiered on Botswana television as well as on South African television shows, Live Amp and Etv’s Club 808. The duo also performed live on a show called Crazy World on Etv. Konakele is a follow-up single to the Mr Blesser, which he released last year featuring Mckenzie.

Darkboy Masey recently relocated to Johannesburg and he points out that his move to SA is about business because the music industry there is bigger. “South Africans take their craft seriously and the music industry there is fast paced compared to here. I am confident that I will do well,” he says. He and his team, that includes his manager, Zayne Aftermath felt that the move would catapult him to higher ground.

He admits that he has not been approached by a big record label but points out that he would scrutinise any opportunity that comes his way. Darkboy Masey emphasises that he will still work with local artists. He however laments that there is no unity among local artistes, which stagnates growth. “Some of our artistes don’t believe in working together.

They put ego and pride first, which affects their work. Collaborations have the power to help one grow their career: because you learn, exchange ideas and get recognition. Collaborations are good.” He plans to go global and is confident that he has what it takes to be counted among the best house DJs from Africa. His journey in music started several years ago when he worked with the likes of Amantle Brown on the song Maria Pela and Mel D on Wenzwabe. He also worked with an artiste called Abbie on a track called Change my lingo.

His breakthrough came when he was playlisted on Big Brother Africa Hotshots in 2012. It gave him recognition and motivated him to work harder. He also secured an interview on a big radio station in Nigeria, Vibez FM. “From there I started making solid connections that helped me break into the SA music industry,” he recalls. A chance meeting with DJ Malwela of Metro FM led to him working DJ Cyndo and eventually through their manager Lucyman, he worked with Trademark and Zinhle on the song Yilo. “Working with them raised my profile. Some DJs started remixing our songs and they would play on radio.” This past festive season, Darkboy Masey performed at Zeerust beach festival, Babina tholo family fun day, Clap your hands and had a gig in Kalamare. He played in Hamanskraal and featured at Rama City in Pretoria. He also toured Durban. “The reception was great,” he says.

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BOSJE elevates jazz education in Botswana

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CHANGING LIVES: Music has the power to empower youth.

The Botswana Society of Jazz Education (BOSJE) will host the 9th annual International Jazz Day for the 3rd time this year at the Maitisong theatre. According to the founding chairperson Akhutlheng Mogami, the society was formed to create a platform for jazz musicians and aspiring jazz musicians to grow and share ideas and even have their work documented.

“As a society, we have realized a need for jazz education. There is also no documentation about jazz in Botswana, which makes it difficult for both the teachers and students when it comes to teaching and learning about jazz as there is no local content to refer to. It is also for purposes of funding applications to run workshops and host festivals and exchange programs that we needed to have a legally registered nonprofit making entity as this one,” she said.

BOSJE was officially registered on the 31st of August 2015 with the registrar of societies and some its objectives include to ensure the growth of Jazz in Botswana and development of jazz education; to build jazz community by advancing education and research; to document, preserve and archive our Botswana jazz heritage; to promote skills development and performance through jazz camps, exchange programs and jazz shows and festivals, and to also develop new audiences.

In January 2017 the society formed a youth jazz big band (Big Bands). Mogami noted that they managed to bring together young people from all walks of life to teach them about jazz and how to play jazz. Since then, the band has been growing substantially both musically and professionally. She noted that The Big Bands in Botswana project which aims to put together jazz bands in schools and communities all over the country. “The project brings together young people and teaches them to play music in an ensemble set up.

The project commenced on the 15th of February 2019 with the primary objective of this project is to bring positive social change through music. Children who are involved in this music program receive a music education, which we believe will lead them to improved overall academic success. The children will also learn the essential skills needed for the 21st century workforce.

In addition to that, these children will also have a platform to exercise their creativity, and all this will in turn grow their confidence.” The band has graced the Masire foundation annual gala dinner, International Jazz Day, Annual De Beers sight holders Dinner, and Gaborone toastmasters among others.

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Diva Vebrok and Benson Phutego drop love sin gle

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NEW OFFERING: Benson & Diva Vebrok’s listening session rocked

Diva Vebrok and Benson Phutego recently released their joint single titled Ha o ka leba. The two launched the song at a listening session at Greenberry Gardens. Music artists including Nono, Franco and promoters PP and Gloria Dzwikiti as well as other industry role players flocked the venue to listen to what the two have to offer and they were not disappointed.

The single is good quality – from the melody, lyrics, rthyme and production. The divine diva Diva Vebrok adds a golden touch with her smooth voice while the bold and eloquent Phutego’s voice complements hers as he breaks out into poetry.

Director of ceremony at the listening session Berry Heart also kept the crowd galvanised throughout the night with her energetic spirit. President of Music Promotions Zenzele Hirschfield expressed appreciation for the support rendered to the two and highlighted that it is important for artists to support one another. “I am honoured to see that that many people in the local music industry have come out to support their fellow artists.

This means a lot and we really need to unite as artists all the time,” she said. She sang praises for Diva Vebrok who she said was passionate and hard working. “She is more than just an artist but also an influencer and entrepreneur. She is one of the women in the music industry who work hard and never give up on their craft,” she said.

Phutego impressed the crowd with his words of wisdom as he appreciated being featured by Ve brok on the single. “It was great working with her as she is passionate and hard working. Women are the pillars of society and as such they should be respected. I have no regrets about this project because I am confident that we produced a great love song.”

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