Zim artists take on Amapiano with catchy new single

A UK-based Zimbabwean music producer and DJ, Ega Savanhu and singer-songwriter Kazz Khalif have collaborated on a new amapiano track, Play My Song.

The eclectic, feel good track, produced by Sammy, is the first single Ega and Kazz have worked on together.

"Collaborating with Kazz was incredible. We had been talking about working together for years and now seemed like an opportune time to do so. I admire his passion, creativity and professionalism," said Ega.

"It was also great working with an extremely talented team, including Sammy, who we worked closely with to create the track. Chalky Visuals and Eli Shot also played a critical role and allowed us to develop and tell a story the way we wanted."

It has been a slow year for the music industry, with live concerts and international tours cancelled as a result of the pandemic. However, artists worldwide have spent time creating music that is compelling, edgy and contemporary.

Ega described amapiano as an electric and an evolving style of music that will 'take over the world'.

Once a preferred style of a few niche enthusiasts, amapiano has made it into the mainstream and drawn the attention of established South African artists like DJ Tira, DJ Maphorisa, and Samthing Soweto.

"I love the South African sound and my inspiration comes from artists like Kabza, Maphorisa and Professor who have made the sub-genre popular internationally."

Ega said that it was a step in the right direction and an opportunity for Zimbabwean artists to put their spin on it.

"Play My Song is an innovative track and the first of many. I am looking forward to producing more amapiano songs in the future."

Like a number of new developments in South African music, amapiano emerged cicra 2012, starting in the townships before filtering into the mainstream.

Since 2018 the house sub-genre's deep, jazzy and syncopated rhythms have emanated from across the African continent and UK artists are slowly adopting the sound that was once regarded as 'inferior'.

"The amapiano sound is so relevant right now and the fact that it's been received so positively in the UK gave me the motivation to work on a project l am truly proud of," said Kazz.

It's relevant, catchy and it [style] emerging from Southern Africa just made it a whole lot more tempting to embrace and has also given me scope to evolve as a musician."

Kazz said that working with like-minded people like Ega, who know the vision and work hard to make it happen, always make the creative process a pleasure.

Known for his raw energy and magnetism, Kazz has established himself as one of the leading African pop artists to come out of Zimbabwe.

The She's Worth It singer, who recently rebranded, said he is working hard to establish the Kazz Khalif brand both locally and internationally.

"One lesson the epidemic has taught me, is the art of communicating with fans and being interactive.Online promotion/marketing is equally important to get people interested and get them to notice what you're doing. 

"Similarly, remaining relevant, creative and consistent is key to building and maintaining an audience, especially when we're all finding our way through a challenging time with lockdown and safety measures that have been put in place," added Kazz.

Ega, who echoed Kazz' sentiments said that online media is a powerful tool.

"The pandemic has been challenging for all of us but it has given musicians a chance to perfect their sound and to pay attention to how imperative digital media is at the moment.

"It has taught me to work harder and be more consistent when it comes to marketing and networking. Networking is important and my advice to everyone; take advantage of the virtual market, grow your network and make sure that you are connecting with the right people."

Play My Song is now available on all digital platforms, including Spotify, Apple Music and Tidal.