Rich Mnisi: 30 Years Of Freedom

Rich Mnisi: 30 Years Of Freedom

For our celebration of South Africa’s 30 Years of Freedom, celebrated fashion designer Rich Mnisi leans into the sounds that have defined the country’s new dispensation. “This playlist is about multiple generations of homegrown creativity, represented predominantly by three genres born and developed here: kwaito, amapiano and gqom,” he explains. “It’s made up of voices that built South Africa’s musical legacy and birthed these descendant sounds, alongside the voices doing new things with the incredible legacy left to us. “We have the pioneers like Lebo Mathosa and Brenda Fassie, amazing creative minds who opened doors for so many, with their influence even leaping beyond music to fashion and other industries,” he continues. “They were so ambitiously, violently, and unapologetically themselves, and this unlocked an era of new narratives and storytelling. We have newer voices, like Tyla, who have created a new offering from that legacy with a sound that is now taking over the world, following in the global footsteps of names like Black Coffee, DJ Lag and Petite Noir. Others keep us grounded by visiting nostalgia with a new lens, like Zoë Modiga, or bring the marginalised to centre stage, like Faka introducing queerness to predominantly masculine gqom culture.” “By sharing their gifts, many of these artists have given us the opportunity to come together around their songs, breaking down barriers that keep us apart by bonding us with the power of music. They reflect pillars of identity that make SA so special, our courage, our hope and the resilience of our joy. I hope the next generation explore, experience and embrace new creative facets of the freedom that was so hard won for us.”

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