On this week's episode of Apple Music's Africa Now Radio, show host DJ Cuppy chats to South African twins Major League DJz - Banele and Bandile Mbere - about their latest track, “Dinaledi (feat. Mpho Sebina).” Major League also dive into the themes behind their new EP, ‘What’s the Levol,’ and linking the kwaito and amapiano genres.
Major League DJz on the growth of amapiano sound:
It's going to have a lot of sub-genres in all of piano. It's already having sub-genres, just like Kwaito piano, there's like deep house piano, there's tech-piano already. There is afro-piano and there's soulful piano. So like Dinaledi is soulful piano. And there's Kwaito, Kwaito, Kwaito, African Kwaito piano. So yeah, so it's probably going to grow. There's going to be afro-beat piano, you know? So you just need to let the genre grow, that's part of growth.
Major League DJz on the decision to switch genres:
Cuppy: You've done urban music before. So were you worried when you were switching genre?
Major League DJz: Yeah, it was a bit worrying, but we basically knew what we were trying to do. You know, dance is a very big genre in Africa and the world alone. So moving into that space wasn't that hard, but we just had to tell the fans like, "This is how we're moving." And now, and this is how we make touring.
Major League DJz on creating a blend of kwaito and amapiano:
Cuppy: Is that any way of creating a collaborative sound between kwaito and amapiano? Is it possible?
Major League DJz: It is possible. That's what we're doing basically right now. Putting on different... because hip hop here is more like kwaito so we move the kwaito, put in that kwaito sound onto amapiano, and people are loving it. A lot of artists that are coming out do that.
Major League DJz on the concept behind their EP ‘What’s The Levol’:
Major League DJz: “What's The Levol?” It's a slang that you have in South Africa. Like, "What are we on about right now?" So at one point, snakes returning in South Africa. People are using snakes for “mooti” and all those things. So we just played around with the...
Major League DJz: What “mooti” is? You know when people do craft?
Cuppy: Oh, like black magic?
Major League DJz: Yes, yes, people are using snakes for witchcraft. So we use it as the playing field, but also "What's the Levol?" is the energy we wanted to have in summer, it was a festive EP. So it's more street anthems than songs like “Dinaledi,” more chanting anthems on that EP. It's not very musical like Piano Chill. So that was the theme around it.