Watch A Johannesburg Artist Give Zulu Folk Music A Western Twist

Mashayabhuqe KaMamba drops a video for “Shandarabaa, Ekhelemendeh,” featuring Okmalumkoolkat.

The YouTube description for Mashayabhuqe KaMamba's "Shandarabaa, Ekhelemendeh," featuring Okmalumkoolkat, tells you everything you need to know about the Johannesburg musician's concept for the self-directed video, and for much of his recent work. "The video depicts the merging of two worlds, the traditional African man juxtaposed against the predominant Western influence in Africa, and how they co-exist in the modern day," writes KaMamba of the clip, which cuts between scenes of older South African men dancing and scenes of youth doing the exact same. The main difference between them, other than age, is aesthetic.

ADVERTISEMENT

That theme—of east meeting west and forming a new culture that exists somewhere in between—is not particularly new. But for KaMamba, it takes on a specific meaning. The Johannesburg-via-Kwazulu Natal musician makes what he describes as digital maskandi, a contemporary reimagining of Zulu folk music that combines it with modern flourishes, like Auto-
Tuned vocals, brain-rattling bass, and direct references to house and hip-hop. Watch the video above, and check out his EP, The Black Excellence Show, here.

Watch A Johannesburg Artist Give Zulu Folk Music A Western Twist