Lifetime Achievement honours for South African greats

Lifetime Achievement honours for South African greats

SAMA25 will bestow the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Awards to the late hip hop star HHP, kwaito legends TKZee and the acclaimed 90s group Mango Groove.

HHP who passed away last year will be remembered for the critical role he played in making Motswako a force to be reckoned with. His career is punctuated with a series of firsts, including being one of the first artists to make rapping over a kwaito beat popular as well as being the first hip hop artist to have multiple successful sync deals. Jabba will also be remembered as the host of SAMAXXI and for the mentor role he played to many artists. He is undeniably one of the greatest forces in South African music and a shape shifter.

The trailblazing Mango Groove was started in 1984 with their unique brand of music fusing marabi and kwela. Their hits “Special Star”, “Another Country” and “Moments Away” to name a few became anthems that sealed their position as the emblematic rainbow nation for being multi ethnic at a time of apartheid. The talented front woman Claire Johnston backed by an equally gifted band that included the late trumpet great Banza Kgasoane became national treasures and faces of the national reconciliation and social cohesion project.

TKZee were the poster boys of cool in the 1990s as they pioneered a sound so unique in the process rewriting South Africa’s music history books by becoming the biggest selling kwaito group. The three piece boy band of Kabelo Mabalane, Zwai Bala and Tokollo Tshabalala gave local audiences classics such as Palalafala and Shibobo. In 1999 TKZee experienced their biggest night at the SAMAs when they scooped five awards including Best Duo/Group and Best Kwaito Album, a record they held on to for years.

Congratulating the achievers Nhlanhla Sibisi, CEO of RiSA said: ‘We are proud that at this milestone,  25th anniversary of the SAMA we will be honouring these giants of music who played such a big role in South African music. Mango Groove is an institution that tells our history as a people and the spirit of tenacity and rising above the odds when it was not so fashionable for blacks and whites to work together. TKZee heralded the early days of freedom with a sound so fresh and invigorating that they became legends in a short space of time. HHP entrenched and adapted the culture of hip hop to a South African audience as he shunned twanging and instead made Setswana fashionable. It’s also extra special that his first posthumous award comes from the industry he gave so much of himself to. We applaud our SAMA25 achievers and we recognise their sterling achievements. Bravo.’

North West MEC for Culture, Arts and Traditional Affairs, Mme Ontlametse Mochware, also lauded the three acts on their achievements.

The Lifetime Achievement Award is probably the finest award an artist can earn, whether they are living or not,” said MEC Mochware. “This is a reflection of the influence and impact HHP, Mango Groove and Tkzee have had on the musical landscape in South Africa and beyond. They truly deserve the honour, and we are proud of them for the example they set for the youth and the inspiration they have been to us all.

”As the North West, we are particularly happy that our own HHP is one of the legends recognised in this year’s prestigious awards. This will further enhance his stature as a role-model to our youth. We are looking forward to a memorable Sama night.

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