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Boom Shaka – Thobela

Boom Shaka – Thobela: A Tribute to the Legendary Kwaito Group

Boom Shaka - Thobela: A Tribute to the Legendary Kwaito Group

Boom Shaka was one of the most influential and popular kwaito groups in South Africa in the 1990s and early 2000s. Their music blended traditional African rhythms with hip hop, house, and dancehall elements, creating a unique and catchy sound that appealed to the youth and the masses. They were also known for their bold and colorful fashion, their energetic and charismatic performances, and their outspoken and controversial lyrics.

Thobela is the name of their fifth and final studio album, released in 2000. The album features some of their biggest hits, such as “It’s About Time”, “Bambanani”, and “Thobela”. The album also showcases their versatility and maturity, as they experiment with different genres and themes, such as gospel, reggae, and social issues. Thobela is widely regarded as one of the best kwaito albums of all time, and a fitting farewell to the group that changed the face of South African music.

In this article, we will explore the legacy and impact of Boom Shaka and their album Thobela, as well as pay tribute to the members of the group who have passed away: Lebo Mathosa, Theo Nhlengethwa, and Junior Sokhela. We will also look at how their music continues to inspire and influence the current generation of artists and fans.

Boom Shaka was formed in 1993 by Lebo Mathosa, Theo Nhlengethwa, Junior Sokhela, and Thembi Seete. They met at a recording studio in Johannesburg, where they were working as backup singers and dancers for other artists. They decided to form their own group and create their own style of music, which they called kwaito. Kwaito is a genre that emerged in the post-apartheid era, as a way of expressing the hopes, frustrations, and aspirations of the black urban youth. Kwaito is characterized by slow and heavy beats, catchy hooks, and vernacular lyrics that often mix English with local languages.

Boom Shaka quickly rose to fame with their debut album Boom Shaka (1994), which featured the hit single “It’s About Time”. The song was a revolutionary anthem that challenged the status quo and called for change and empowerment. The song also sparked controversy for its explicit and suggestive lyrics and video, which earned them a ban from some radio and TV stations. However, this only increased their popularity and influence, as they became the voice of the rebellious and defiant youth culture.

The group followed up with four more successful albums: Rebel With a Cause (1996), It’s About Time (1998), Izinja Zam (1999), and Thobela (2000). They also collaborated with other artists, such as Brenda Fassie, Mandoza, Bongo Maffin, and TKZee. They won several awards and accolades, such as the South African Music Award for Best Kwaito Album in 1999 and 2001. They also performed at various local and international events, such as the 1995 Rugby World Cup, the 1996 African Cup of Nations, the 1999 All Africa Games, and the 2000 Kora Awards.

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