2021


A week ago KXNG Massey roped in King Flames for a royal show off in the form of bars spit in front of a camera because visuals much like drip are forever.Titled Nhodo the song has that boom bap feel and hardcore delivery guaranteed to put peeps writing your career off on notice.The gist of the song is how Zimbabwe is super hard to survive in at the moment and how poverty tends to play games with you throwing you in the air then catching you to send you back to your misery much like Nhodo a game most are familiar with.That its played with rocks then ties in to how rock solid Massey and Flames's dedication to their craft is




Everytime i listen to today's song of the day i can't help but be a little mad bro.See Don Cavelle on a Vic Enlisted production was magic back in the day and I'm sure nothing has changed but Mr Cavelle has been avoiding the studio like leprosy in recent years though he assured yours truly new music is dropping this year.Dropped in 2017 everything about this song was and is perfection personified from the bars (Perfection soap we see you),the Brenda Fassie sample and Cavelle's bounce which proved why he has Don in his name.Years later i still get goosebumps when i hear homey calmly saying
"I kick mad verses like I'm playing soccer with the bible
So ill with it i could die tommorow"



The current generation of Zimbabwean rappers has figured out the game is for the taking and they are not waiting for anyone to hand it to them choosing instead to grab the proverbial bull by its graffiti inscribed horns.From the aesthetic to the sound and the wording in the music a shiny veneer screaming futuristic is apparent for all to see.Venerated beatboxer,producer and rapper Suhn is one such young talent out to get his by any means necessary.



His latest drop is Twenties a bop whose accompanying lyric video has him look like a mbira playing Travis Scott with the gold grills and hairdo.The sound however is far from Travis but a modern upbeat Shona English fusion of confident affirmations for the Twenties starting with 2021.A famous fire lass,fly crib on the softer side of town and a Grammy for Harare by 2023.




In the last decade one of the most incredible rappers to emerge from these shores is Asaph.The City Of Kings spitter is equally good in dropping party starting bops like SNDR and heartfelt sermons from the heart like Masiyiwa Moves or today's video of the day Hate To Say.Dropped two years ago the song is but an example of how potent the MTV Africa Music Awards nominee can get.



Hate To Say was dropped as a visual freestyle on an instrumental previously used by Tory Lanez.Asaph adressed all the stuff and emotions he was going through career wise and in his life in general at that time.Issues like governance,art in Zimbabwe,tribalism in the arts sector among other issues pertinent to this day are also adressed




Last year the game was hit by news so devastating swallowing the bitter pill is still unfathomable at this point.A trailblazer,hard working young man whose exceptional rapping and production skills had placed him on ZimHipHop's Mount Everest was snatched from us in an unfortunate hit and run.The outpouring of grief and the multitudes who came to mourn Cal Vin once again brought into focus the discussion about celebrating our icons while they are alive and giving them their roses while they can smell them.



See three years prior Dat Luveve boy had penned a joint titled Thabani airing out his frustration at being overlooked and his talent undercompensated.He said he felt like Lovemore Majaivana when he hung his boots because his city wasn't showing him love even interpolating Majee's Thabani.Thoughts of leaving social media,relocating to a land faraway are addressed and in the aftermath of his untimely passing the song as beautiful as it is is a hard listen.This was a vocal athlete perfoming rap at the highest level contemplating giving it all up for lack of support the very same support that showed up to make his funeral an oversubscribed street celebration.Rest In Power King Cal




The voice of ghetto intelligence,Bars Ali aka Boss Gze has a new single and video out and he decided to take us to Church.His signature booming voice takes a soulful Afrow Zenda production on a musical date and the resultant sermon is heart wrenching.Various scenes of personal difficulties,abuse,being arm twisted to trade your morals for cash unfold on the screen as Gze spits about how in this life everyone is carrying their cross climbing steepy hills with no breakthrough in site.In the end he implores the heavens for a Simon Of Cyrene to relieve his flock from this heavy burden even for a few seconds.



Music and love are twins commanding such a huge following and a multitude of followers minus the happiness and soft life they promise.Ever fell in love with a pretty lass or charming lad,gave them your all and they repaid you in chest pains and hurt? Thats the messaging behind our video of the day as explained by Karizma.The game is for strong souls because you might dedicate your life and give it your all trying to get to the top but if your strength fails you you will forever consider it rigged and heartless



Maaaaan what a time to be alive.Artists and Corporates are cross collaborating across platforms and the results are getting better with each day.Take for example the new show by Big Bass Entertainment titled Switch Up which sees artists perform a song then switch up to the next joint in record time.



They are two episodes in and for their latest episode they tapped in Tyler Govinder aka Tyler King.Tyler a Member of The Higher Culture Mob (arguably one of the hardest Colored crews in the history of Zimbabwean rap) comes through serving dope raps on a trappy as fudge wave.I personally love The Mobb but i gotta admit solo tapes from all parties and collaborative slaps from all parties would be equally good for me




The best thing for an artist in the spotlight is to keep delivering at the level of the product that got him there.Having prior epic work people can visit to be further exposed to your dope artistry is another plus.Kae Chaps seems to be ticking all these boxes with ease what with a super relatable fire follow up to Juzi.




Titled No Man Curse the song was produced by the 40 to his Drake Dj Futronic and it came with a studio session courtesy of Zim Celebs.As usual he came with super mellow vibes from the heart and the result is an autobiography that resonates.From wanting to give up, feeling suicidal and getting help for his mental health to the knifing that almost killed him on November 2021 Kae bares it all.He concludes on a positive note urging people to bet on themselves,promising youngins looking up to him that he won't let them down and reminding us that no man can curse what God has blessed



When Rockie Duob dropped his Lingo album a certain track caught our attention.Titled Monate Fela the joint had some of the finest rappers from Bulawayo including Tha Dawg,Vic Ijita and Asaph.Rockie gave the song a cinematic experience with a video shot by Marcus Khumalo for Black Inc Creates.Bars,dope shots and a united front is all we ever asked for and we got that.





In a few years Shasha has gone from a Manicaland gem people slept on  (Chiadzwa wasuup) to a global superstar.She gave us our first ever BET award as a nation and her exploits on the Amapiano scene in South Africa birthed a Yanos Queen.Recently she was nominated for two MAMAs and rather than rest she continues to experiment with new sounds and markets.



Her latest foray into the world has seen her collaborate with Nigeria's very own Killertunes,world renowned DJ Like Mike and Major Lazer's very own Walshy.Light up unites Africa,Europe and the Caribbean in a beautiful feel good ballad about the special people in our lives who light up our world.




In 2019 rapper,beatboxer,producer  Union 5 was handpicked by Mr Eazi as one of a 100 talented young Africans Eazi wanted to work with via his Empawa programme.Union would go on to drop bangers like Hona Magetsi and chill in studio with Diplo,Simba Tagz and Mr Eazi during his rookie years making him seem like a larger than life vet.In 2021 he has rebranded to Suhn but his impeccable vernac meets Queen Elizabeth flow coupled with hard as nails beats remains unchanged.




His latest release is Margielas a play on the Paris footwear powerhouse Maison Margiela and the Shona word for jealous  majelasi.Its a display of what he is capable of lyrically and how deadly his delivery is not to mention how at ease with the beat he is.Suhn is also a member of the avante garde group of young creatives known as Domane Youth alongside Denim Woods and it would be a dream come true if he drops a follow up to his Hype EP.



HipHop is one of the most ironic genres on this planet we call earth.Everybody and their cousin brother will scream 'Aint no rapper doing ish like me" while following trends and biting harder than a hungry rat in a peanut warehouse.As such when cats like Tanto Wavie impresario of the TrapSu Movement come along you take immoral amounts of that breathe of fresh air.



Without boxing him Tanto Wavie is basically what you get if a sonically futuristic System Tazvida loved trap beats.Take our video of the day for example.Based on the title John Vhura Gedhi one would assume its another John Vuli Gate cover but this slaps different.A mixture of nostalgic sungura vocals delivered in a trap meets prazero singalongs on an  eccentric TrapSu beat makes for a fire track and video directed by Mitch Uta.



        



Criss Swiss and The Dot are on a roll this year.Having won the best group award at the ZimHipHop Awards last year the duo recently won the best duo at the Zimbabwe Music Awards as well.From a rap trio alongside Sky City Uno during their formative years the City Of Kings natives have set their eyes on that Tag Team Championship of the world and the work ethic is so  inline with that vision.



For their latest drop they roped in MUSE and T Jeketera for a Rayo Beats production dubbed Super.While the song is about living a super life they use references that can be easily grasped by Zimbos.Girls in red and blue shaking what their mamas gave them much like Super Chibuku,sipping on that super in copious amounts till people think they are Clark Kenting (Superman) and generally communicating their gospel of living super like Mr Super Mandiwanzira who owns AB Communications the message readily hits home.




It first dropped as a snippet and Papa as Noble is affectionately known asked the interwebs who they wanted on the official version of Petrikupindapa.A lot of names were thrown in the gauntlet and a few release dates given but the lineup and the song are finally out and the hashtah #YearOfTheLyricists is now making sense.From Masvingo we have Noble himself and Jungle Loco,Blacperl is repping for the femme fatales,Asaph got Bulawayo on lock while Gze comes through with that street poetry.



Production was placed in the capable hands of Baba Sushie who i wouldn't mind producing a hit or two for me and my homeys.The theme of the day is we are entering a new phase and said stage revolves around bars.Still to pick a favorite verse what with everybody onboard being in their bag like they intentionally slipped into the satchels they carry their laptops in.Take a listen and help us decide who bested who among these lyrical fiends.




I'm on record calling this man one of the most profound lyricists this country has.From rhyme schemes,metaphors,double entendres and the way he builds up his ideas in song layer by layer VI The Law is a special breed.His work ethic too is unprecedented with tonnes of new work dropped every other week be it in his emcee bag or when he handles production for other talented emcees.



His latest release is Fight or Flight an EP which carries today's song of the day produced by Nash Da King whose sample game is psyche award crazy.Rap Oxygen is an introspective piece as VI has a conversation with himself about how someone with his skill set can be so underrated.He eventually comes to terms with the fact that despite having few material things he has always been cut from a different cloth (heart on the sleeve levels) so rather than seek human validation he will carry out God's mission which is to gift the game with rap Oxygen so it can breathe




Not too long ago the radio and mainstream media determined who was hot and who was not and the lense through which we viewed local hiphop was skewed and biased towards a few hubs namely Harare and Bulawayo.With the widespread use of the world wide web that has changed in recent times with the information superhighway giving rappers from the most unlikely places a chance to be heard.Take the Fresh Prince Of Mbare Tshaka Lawd Gallis hailing from the cradle of Zimdancehall Mbare a place you usually wouldn't expect vibrant rappers to pop off.



The Define Entertainment signee dropped his debut album Humambo last year and the title track is our video of the day.The gritty video was shot by Leoy V while Afrow Zenda handled production.Tshaka declares his intention to run for King in a dancehall meets trap while dancing with ATLsque beats hybrid that gives credit to his claim to the throne.Peep the video and tell us the future of Zimbabwean music is not safe.




We have new music from a lineup of three talented spitters hailing from Harare and Chitungwiza respectively.Titled Chimbambaira which translates to underground bomb the drill sound isn't what you would expect from "Backpack Rappers" so we asked Ill Manner if that was a conscious decision.The lanky dreadlocked rapper known for years for loving boom bap instrumentals said indeed it was a conscious decision.As his sound has evolved and as he has grown acceptable of other sounds  in HipHop he thought it was only fair to get his peers out of their comfort zone to showcase their flows on a drill tip.Who do you think had the best verse?



Holy Ten is getting ready to drop Risky Life the album in the near future.Ahead of the album drop he decided to feed his fans with a pre-album release featuring dancehall sensation Anita Jackson.As has become the norm with his recent drops Appetite came accompanied with a video directed by the talented Mitch Uta who is juggler of not balancing dope raps and iconic shots behind the camera.



Appetite is a feel good joint guaranteed to have many studying their old folks theses on how to get their groovy boy dance shoes on but Ten still finds time to preach with scenes warning girls of the dangers of getting drugged if they accept drinks from everybody.Anita impresses with a sick verse delivered in patois and Shona.At the time of going to press the video was calmly sitting on over 16000 views in an hour huge numbers in any genre let alone ZimHipHop.It was wonderful seeing brands getting on board to collaborate with culture as Push Athletics,Venice Men's Wear and Ngoto Laager all played a part in the video




When rap cats send you their music to sample you either have a fire extinguisher on hand to douse the fiery bars or a trash can to save your ears from mutilation.With Mr Gudatit its always the former what with his hard bars,smooth delivery and a calmness on the beat that betrays how long he has been in the rap trenches.His latest musical offering is Lovely a freestyle that came complete with visuals.It seems 'Bars' was the key word on the day he recorded the laidback yet potent joint.



Bar for Bar scheme by scheme few can match Awa Kwiwe's rapping skills.She has been in studio with Dj Tira,toured the world and dropped fire with like-minded girls from around the world but us enjoying her music in its purest form has been nothing more than a wish.



2021 however seems to be a kind year for fans of Miss Awa.Having had too many studio sessions to mention with award winning German producer Ghanaian Stallion we finally have a single.On Ngeke Bengimele Awa admits she took a five year break to let the game breathe and if they aint uuuuuuuh shame.Bars,complex rhyme schemes and chemistry with the beat has us thinking Mama's signal is here and it says kill everything Awa.




One of the most talented videographers in Zimbabwe right now is Leoy V and boy has he been putting in work and repping for his hometown Chitungwiza.Through his Ghetto Ark Sessions Leoy takes dope tracks from his peers and turns them into barbershop one take gold.Mwana WaPharaoh had to pull up for episode 66 to perform 'Elevation' off his career defining album Muchinjiko.Soak in the bars and culture in this display of how raw and gritty hiphop goes down while maintaining a touch of class



Earlier this month Kae Chaps broke the internet with Juzi a ballad about love gone bad that saw a young king from Rugare previously underrated and slept on trend on Twitter,Youtube while getting cosigns from prominent politicians,Zimbabwe's biggest musicians (think Jah Prayzah,Stunner et al).It was a beautiful moment for disciples of the gospel according to Kae what with the world finally getting their glasses and waking up to the genius he was.In as much as the song is breathtaking its not the most potent one in his ouvre.



After dropping  a string of EPs late last year Kae Chaps released a beautiful debut album titled Vanga (wound).It carried many wonderful singalongs including Sahwira a dedication to a ride or die friend delivered in  trapsoulsque eloquence on smooth synths.The messaging of always getting your dawgs in trouble and them never turning their backs on you is especially important in this cold world where such friends are few.By interpolating the timeless Pengaudzoke classic of the same name dude went a step further to prove that he is more than a musician but an artist.





Last night the Zimbabwe Music Awards went down virtually due to the lockdown restrictions informed by the Corona Virus.The event was hosted by renowned talkshow host Arthur Evans,the gorgeous Rumbidzai 'News Bae' Takawira and the vivacious Ruvheneko Parerenyatwa.One category in particular had us use our chow money to buy data (hustlers can eat rocks like old lady from Chivi right) and that is the best HipHop category.

 

All the four gentlemen nominated i.e Asaph,Holy Ten,Pro Beatz and R Peels had an incredible 2020 with outstanding songs,videos and even projects so picking the winner must have proved troublesome for the panel of judges.In the end Ndaremerwa hitmaker,nemesis to the Gamuchirai's of this world and leader of the youth Holy Ten walked away victorious.Holy also scooped best newcomer while City Of Kings duo Cris Swissy and The Dot got best group/duo.These wins by ZimHipHop might be  signalling the shift in content consumed and the sonical direction as far as the local music scene is concerned.


Masvingo might be affectionately known as The Ancient City but the future rapwise from the city,the present,even the past have been and looks set to continue being secure.Fresh talents to look out for from Vegas include Kriss Newtone who switches between Anglo Saxon bars to vernacular ones with as much ease as Susan Mutami photo opping every prominent politician this side of the equator.His collaborative partner in crime on today's Record Of The Day one Shian is a ferocious femcee whose raps we would overdose on if they were available in abundance.

With Wazzanin the duo weren't tryna tackle world hunger or global warming but much like the title suggests they just wanted to say hie to everyone in the game past and present.With silky smooth delivery, impeccable bar work and an equally sound instrumental their greetings in rhyme are a declaration that the young generation is here and they want it all



Nash TV has been doing exceptionally well in giving local artists a visual footprint via their Color Vibes Show.In recent times a lot of Zimbabwean rappers have had  a chance to showcase their skills and boy have they showed off.Kikky Badass whose critically acclaimed album Bloodline has had people screaming female rap is back recently stopped by Nash TV for a young performance.




She chose to perfom G4L aka Gangster For Life.Dressed in a breathtaking  all white biker shorts meets top combo she rode the beat like Valentino Rossi in his prime.The beat being groovy and her bars on G4L being potent definitely made the task a lot easier.



Jecha Trap Movement kingpin Voltz aka Magetsi has been a busy man in 2021.Fresh off signing to Mula Nation Entertainment Voltz much like time waited for no man and dropped a three track EP.Titled Mayhem and Melodies fans were glad the Chitown trap artist maintained his Jecha Trap sound.




Now a song off the tape has received visual treatment from long time creative partner Leoy V.For Grind Rangu Voltz and Leoy V went for a monochromatic look leaning heavily on black and white.The song itself is the classic hiphop packaging telling off haters who wanna mess up your Grind and bigging up your day ones