The South African-bred sound of Amapiano has become a runaway success story recently. A light and energetic fusion of South African house, jazz and soul with a heavy focus on—you guessed it—pianos, Amapiano has been the uplifting elixir we all so desperately needed and it’s already set to soundtrack the summer in South Africa, the UK and beyond.
Leading the charge to take the sound—which has been around since 2012—global, is Alexandra-born selector and producer Mr JazziQ of JazziDisciples. He’s been working tirelessly in the local scene to build it up into the thriving cultural epicentre it is today, and in just a few shorts years has made incredible gains. In March last year, he released his debut album, 0303, which spawned a bunch of hit singles, two of which were certified Gold in South Africa, including “Askies” with another SA star, Moonchild Sanelly.
Just over a year later and he has just released his third studio album, Party With The English—an acknowledgement of the sound’s global takeover and its success on our own shores. To celebrate the album’s release, we caught up with Mr JazziQ and asked him to make us a mix, which you can hear exclusively below.
Tell us a bit about your selections in this mix.
I think it’s a good introduction to me and my sound in 30 minutes. I used some unreleased music, as well as some tracks that are doing well outside.
What was the one track you absolutely had to include?
I also had to show love to the future classic, “Umsebenzi Wethu”. It was a must.
Any tracks that narrowly missed the cut?
“Woza” by Mr JazziQ, with Kabza de Small, Lady Du and Boohle. That’s one of my favourite tracks that I’ve worked on and I still get excited whenever I hear it.
What’s the first single or album you ever bought?
50 Cent’s Get Rich or Die Tryin’. Classic!
What’s the last physical record you bought?
The last proper physical purchase, not counting downloads, was Lil Wayne’s Tha Carter III.
What do you want to see happen musically over the next 12 months?
I can already see more growth of African music around the world, but we need more sharing and more collaborations. I love what’s going on in Nigeria, the UK and the US, with people truly embracing our South African sound.
What trend or scene absolutely needs to die right now?
This thing of being rude and mean to people on the internet for no reason. Rest Bafethu!
2. Mr JazziQ f/ Mpura, Zuma, Reece Madlisa – Khuzeka
4. Junior De Rocka & Lady Du f/ Mr JazziQ, Mellow, Sleaz – Catalia
5. Mr JazziQ & 9umba f/ Zuma, Mpura – uLazi
6. Busta 929 & Mpura f/ Zuma, Mr JazziQ, Lady Du, Reece Madlisa – Umsebenzi Wethu