Takura new hip hop king?
Making a top ten list is a plus for an artiste in any genre and thus it was for a rising local rapper called Takura but it got some chat groups buzzing about the list.
Questions such as “What criteria are they using to place him among the top 10…sales” arose regarding young MC Takura’s inclusion. I say the young cat has talent but I don’t think he has done enough this far. He is just setting out. So I marveled and googled…
I have been looking at the various lists on the internet and they make interesting reading. The exercise is much like the adage that says beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.
Some of the lists turn up the same characters ranked differently such as Manifest, Sarkodie, Aka, MI, Ice Prince, Cassper Nyovest etc but not a single one mentions our local boy Takura. Hip hop king Calvin would be a reasonable choice in terms of national and regional impact. And he has made Hype magazine ( South African hip hop mag’s list in 2014)
Meanwhile Calvin just returned from an European tour on which he shared platforms with South African top rated Cassper Nyovest apart from winning a couple of national hip hop gongs in Zimbabwe. His hustle has been hard enough to garner him the attention and respect of peers and critics alike.
He is also billed to headline a Castle Lager gig slated for the upmarket Horizon Night Club month end October. He will feature alongside DJ Miss Pam , Babongile Sikhonjwa and Kead Wikead. The corporate world is taking notice and that is a good look for the MC. Brands take time to build before the hustle is paid. You grind and grind and someday business will take notice.
So I think whereas Takura is serious enough a contender, he has yet to earn his stripes. Industry watchers have nonetheless tapped him for a gong in the best new rappers class in Zimbabwe this year and that alongside the likes of Ti Gonzi and some other youth called Sharky.
Ultimately, these top ten lists are the stuff of controversy when they ignore some crowd favourites. Still, a list must have some sort of credibility by offering subjective criteria such as sales, digital downloads, buzz, lyrical content, media impact etc by which to guide followers. Otherwise, they become mere PR tools for artistes. Glaring ommissions of deserving candidates have the potential to discredit the lists.
So for me Takura , the former half of the Soul Afrika pop music member, who went on his headline grabbing Stripped Varsity tour to introduce himself to fans, is only just making us look with his recent efforts and decision to have a savvy management team behind him.
Rarely is the college circuit tackled by our artistes as a niche market. It was a good decision to embark on the tour given the demographic and the captive entertainment starved audiences on college campuses. So for what it’s worth, the tour is a feather in a hustler’s cap. But is it really all that it takes to make the top African rappers list alongside AKA and Cassper Nyovest who have grabbed international attention (BET nominations) and filled up domes ?
The fair and generous thing to say is that Takura who just put out his EP has a bright future ahead of him. But he has yet to make enough plays to win the ring at this rap game