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Here are the top 10 South African music genres so far in 2023.
Mzansi has been blessed with a lot of great music this year. Some of our favourite artists have released big hits and dominated the airwaves with their music. Several music genres have claimed major spots on the airwaves, and the hits keep flooding in. While Amapiano has been on a dominant streak worldwide, other genres have held their ground here in SA. Now, here’s a list of some of the biggest music genres in the country this year.
It would be a crime to not include Amapiano on this list. Despite predictions that the genre would only last a few years (if it was lucky) and then fade away into the abyss, Piano has gone beyond South African borders and dominated the world, influencing non-South African artists to deliver hits too. Hitmakers like Uncle Waffles, Major League DJz, Focalistic, Kabza De Small, DBN Gogo, Nkosazana Daughter, Pabi Cooper, and more have helped push the genre with good music-dominated airwaves with their music. Piano is a movement that cannot be stopped. At least, not yet.
We have always loved how well Mzansi Gospel artists bless their fans with good music. Thanks to several Gospel hitmakers, fans have been motivated by beautiful music this year. There may not have been a lot of hit Gospel songs so far in 2023, but there have been several new releases from some of our faves, including Spirit Of Praise and more. Soweto Gospel Choir teamed up with Christopher Tin for “The Drop That Contained The Sea: Waloyo Yamoni.” The list goes on.
Afrikaans music is one of the most celebrated genres in South African music. This is especially because the genre caters to a large section of people who speak the language. Afrikaans music holds its own every year, and 2023 has not changed. Thanks to some of the big names on the scene, the music has been crazy. Artists like Kurt Darren, JAN JAN JAN, Wilma Van Heerden, Anzélle, and more have blessed the airwaves with good music.
Imagine not having a house hit after six whole months. Well, that’s impossible. South Africa boasts some of the most prominent and most talented House DJs on the continent and the world. Shout out to Black Coffee, who has been on tour this year. The Grammy-winner has not only taken House music to the world but also dropped a few new features. Hit makes like Mørda, Prince Kaybee, Master KG, and more have also been on their A-game.
We can assure you that it has also been an excellent year for Maskandi music and its musicians. If you have paid any attention, you will notice that Maskandi musicians do not really release singles. They are more of album people, and they have blessed the always with lots of albums this year. Amabunjwa dropped the “I Uber” album recently, Ntancane released the “Isivulwe Yonke” album, and so on. Omacekeceke Abashaa, Ishayina, Ama Quality, and more have also flooded the scene with new music.
One thing we will never see happen is the death of SA Hip Hop. SA continues to rule the continent as the country with the biggest Hip Hop scene. The iconic AKA passed in February, but he left behind an album for his fans to remember him by. The album delivered hit songs. Hitmakers like A-Reece (the surprise dropper), K.O, Blxckie, Lucasraps, and more have always upped their game with new music.
We are proud of how much the Gqom scene has kept its energy up with good music this year. Gqom may not be as big as it used to be, but we dedicated fans have far more than we bargained for this year. Popular hitmakers like DJ Tira, Dladla Mshunqisi, AmaTycooler, Beast RSA, DJ Exit, General C’mamane, Dlala Thukzin, Pro Tee, DJ Lag, and more have blessed the scene with good music. We have not lacked in that regard.
Always represented in every list of the best-performing genres in South Africa each year, Sgija never disappoints. Of course, this is all thanks to the artists and groups doing the most on the scene. 2023 has seen many releases from Sgija’s best representatives, including Sgija Disciples, who dropped “Motions,” a song that we can’t get out of our heads, JayLokas with his “Omphile” album, Justin99, etc. Artists merge Sgija with other genres like Amapiano and produce some of the best hits on the scene.
Every year, Kwaito music lives on due to the effortless contributions of some of the best talents on the scene. Thanks to these artists, fans of the genre are well entertained. So far this year, there have been entries from some of the most prominent artists, including Sjava, Janta MW, Kelly Khumalo, Reece Madlisa, and more. Sjava’s music has celebrated Kwaito in the best ways. His album “Isibuko” remains among the bestsellers in the South African music scene this year.
One of the best things about the South African music scene is how well every song genre is represented on the airwaves. The RnB scene has seen many entries from some of the genre’s most prominent talents. A few weeks back, Lordkez released the critically acclaimed album “Testament.” Donald was the focus of the scene in February with his loved-filled jams “I Miss You” and “Angeke.” The RnB scene has kept its bar up this year.