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the biker magistrate

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By Keletso Thobega

When you spot 33 year-old Tshepo Thedi cruising around the shanty town of Lobatse in her top of the range German sedan, you wouldn’t believe that this chic and sauve lady magistrate is also a biker!

Yep, when she hangs her magisterial gown, Thedi enjoys nothing more than donning her leather jacket and helmet and getting onto her bike. From a young age, Thedi has always relished the idea of being a biker.

“When I was a small child, I was fascinated by bikes and told myself that I would get one for myself when I am older,” she says. It was however only in 2011 when she moved to Lobatse from Hukuntsi, that the University of Botswana Law graduate decided to act on her passion and interest and got her own bike and then learnt how to ride.

When she eventually had the hang of it, she knew that it was now time to realise one goal on her bucket list – to ride long distance. This past festive, Thedi challenged herself to ride a longer stretch. She rode to the Okavango in the company of her friend, Gaborone based fashion designer, Kefilwe ‘Sweety’ Lobelo. Quite a scary prospect, but the two were intent on realising their goal.

Thedi admits it was not an entire breeze. “Sometimes when other people do things, you wish you could do them too, but when you are in the mix of things, only then do you feel the heat!” There’s a lot of pun there because on their ride, the two had to contend with the sweltering heat of more than 40 degrees, throughout the trip. There was the option of turning back, but they soldiered on, even with the fear of coming into contact with wild animals lingering in their minds.

The two left Gaborone on 30 December 2015, at around 4am, and by 3pm the same day, they were in Maun. They returned to Gaborone on 2 January 2016.
This was a life changing experience for Thedi because she was now in new terrain. Although riding long distance comes with its own set of  challenges, she has achieved something that she had always dreamt of.

The long ride also helped them learn more about the functionality of bikes; they fuelled for themselves and had to deal with any problems they encountered themselves.

“We faced a fair amount of challenges, but all in all, it was a beautiful experience because we stepped out of our comfort zones. Being a biker has increased my self-confidence and opened me to a different kind of peace and freedom. When you are on the road, you only think about the stretch before you, so you close out other thoughts. As much as riding a bike can be physically challenging, it is also quite an exhilarating experience,”she explains.

Given the opportunity, Thedi would ride for charity or any other fundraising activity she feels is close to her heart, now that she knows what she is capable of on her bike. Thedi is also one of the organisers of the Thobo Cultural festival, which is held in April annually in Lobatse, to celebrate the town’s rich heritage and revel in the unique Setswana culture.

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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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