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Mavilos takes his solo career to new heights

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For a few years he was the one half of the popular group Matshikos but Mavilos has now stepped out to pursue a solo career. He insists that he has always wanted to work solo but stepped into Matshikos for a while to fill in for someone. The experience and exposure proved valuable. “I always knew that I would go solo eventually. Dan Tshanda, who I worked with, was quite supportive when I told him that I would go at it alone in 2011,” he says.

Mavilos makes Afro house. “I wanted to create a sound that is unique to Africa,” he says. Mavilos, who is a producer, composer and songwriter, has six albums under his belt and he is not slowing down. He will drop another full album in April, he says. While his towering frame can be intimidating at first meeting, Mavilos is something of a gentle giant. He is tall and well-built but has a soothing smile and easy laugh.

He could pass off a bouncer and it is hardly surprising that he played the role of Ndozi, a bodyguard to Ngwenya (portrayed by legendary actor Menzi Ngubane) in the popular South African soapie Isibaya. But music is his first love, the Pedi gentleman insists. His latest single O mo tsere kae is a love jam that talks about the beauty of a woman who is adored. “She is beautiful inside and out. She turns heads wherever she goes and so people ask her man, where he got her from,” he says. The video is already on You Tube and would also premier on Btv soon.

Mavilos says that he could not ignore his footprints in Botswana. He spent a lot of time here touring with Matshikos and fell in love with the country. He has friends here and sees the country as his second home. He also appreciates how locals love music and support quality. “I am open to landing gigs and working with Batswana. The people here are welcoming and amazing,” he says. He has already been interviewed on DJ Sly’s show.

“The reception is amazing. I can feel the love and support,” he says. With a chuckle, he adds that some fans in Botswana recognise him from Isibaya. “Some of them get excited and ask for pictures and hugs, it is all heartwarming,” he says. Mavilos’ music is available on iTunes and Apple store.

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Motlha to finally release debut album

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Trendsetting songbird Motlha is pencilled to release his solo album in February next year. Motlha is signed under Rok Lefatshe Records. The album will be produced by Suffocate. The vibrant singer currentlyhas three singles out and they include Hisa Hisa (featuring ATI), Mmamotse (which catapulted him to the top of the charts) as well as Nnenekwane.

Speaking in an interview with this publication last week ahead of his debut at the Mascom Live Sessions event featuring Bongo Maffin, he revealed that he started work on music for his debut album right after the release of Mmamotse.

He also says that the album is still a work in progress, and that he is yet to finalise the final list of songs that will make it into the album, as well as the name of the album. Ï am still eliminating and adding songs,” he explains.

He further says that his fans should look forward to collaborations with artists such as Zanda Zakusa (South Africa) and Soul Culture (also from South Africa). He reveals that he wants to work with a lot of artists who are in line with his vision.

He also notes that it is difficult for him to identify his genre. Some he says, classify his music as Afro Jazz, other Jazz with a fusion of RnB. Ï am still trying to classify my genre, and I might have to come up with a name for my sound,” he notes.His goal, he says, is to make music that touches and changes lives in a postive way. “I want to empower people through music.”

Meanwhile, Motlha proved his mettle as a stage performer of note when he put on an impressive performance at the Mascom Live sessions this past Friday.He gave revellers their money’s worth and many cheered and sang along throughout his energetic performance.

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Kokoamokoko entrances poetry lovers at his wedding

Irene Shone

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TALENTED: The recently married poet is working on a new album.

Former President’s Day competitions poetry award winner Okabo Gaopelo, also known as Kokoamokoko, tied the knot in style this past weekend in Mankgodi. The energetic performer could not help but serenade guests with his rich Setswana poetic rhythm. The superb poet better known as ‘Kokoamokoko’ planned on enjoying his day while listening to other poets doing what he loves best.

A variety of poets made his day as they added the cherry to the blissful wedding by presenting poems to him. While he had sworn that he would not recite any poem, his talent itched to be shared and he asked for the mic and gladly presented poetic verses, singing praises to his gorgeous wife.

The guests cheered him in amusement, imitating his usual line “Ke kokoamokoko weeee.”Gaopelo glamorously rocked his traditional attire that he normally use for his poetic sessions, saying that it is his signature for the love of arts. The bridesmaids and groomsmen also looked the part in the African attire, and they danced magnificently, showing off their well-choreographed moves.

They danced to the poet’ traditional song Ao ntate, from his album Tswhwarelo. Gaopelo told Vibe that he performed his work on his wedding day in order to motivate upcoming artistes who enjoy poetry and traditional music. He pointed out that many people think that many people seem to think that musicians and other arts practitioners do it to earn a living, but that is not the case.

“I wanted to show that we also do this out of passion and to showcase our talent. It really felt wonderful to perform for my wife and guests, and to also dance to my own song on my wedding day.” Gaopelo added that he plans to release another album next year.

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