It’s Offical: Nathi Mankayi, Shekinah, Fifi Cooper, Emtee, Gigi Lamaine, DJ Merlon, Nasty C, Prince Kaybee, Mobi Dixon and Timo ODV was revealed as the MTV Base hottest newcomers of 2016 and it premieres on Friday, February 05 at 17:00.
The hotlist of “Nu Skool” music geniuses tipped for greatness in 2016 was revealed at the MTV Base Roundtable: Hottest Newcomers 2016.
Sandile Ntshingila unpacks the list with the start-studded panel.
The top 10 were hand-picked after kwaito legend – Arthur Mafokate, Hip Hop legend Amu, radio personalities, Mantsoe Pout and Mo Flava and Zalebs’ Tinashe Venge all sat down with MTV Base VJ Sandile Ntshingila, to unpack the nation’s hottest emerging stars.
Taking the nation’s cultural temperature by showcasing the hottest artists of the future, MTV Base focused on style, buzz, staying power, and music contribution with the potential to make more waves in 2016.
South Africa’s soul/Afro-pop darling, Nathi blew up with his melodic anthem Nomvula, which has been nominated for multiple awards, earning him a place alongside South Africa’s music greats.
Born and bred in the Eastern Cape’s Maclear, Nathi’s debut album Buyelekhaya has sold more than 88,000 copies with hits like Nomvula, Intliziyo, Noba Ngumama and Nomakanjani featuring Vusi Nova on high rotation in stations across the country.
Durban-born singing sensation, Shekinah, took the nation by surprise with her breakthrough single gold selling “Back To The Beach” featuring Kyle Deutsch.
A member of the Wolfpack family, she has been spotted performing at various hotspots and big stages since then. Her follow-up single “Let You Know” is also making music compilers and DJs sit up and pay attention.
One of the most recognizable voices in South African hip-hop is the first lady of Motswako – Fifi Cooper.
She is one of the talents that made a huge impact in music in 2015, releasing her debut album 20FIFI with singles “Kisses” featuring AB Crazy and Putsununu featuring JR and Kwesta.
She also featured on a number of hip-hop hits that include AKA’s “Baddest” remix and Khuli Chana’s “Mnatebawen”.
“Rabafasa babalets” aka “Roll Up” was the song that launched rapper Emtee’s career. Taken off his debut album, Avery, Emtee remixed the song featuring Nigerian superstar Wizkid and our very own Supa Mega.
Several Hip Hop heavyweights, including KO, have hailed Emtee as the one to watch. His hit single “Roll Up” also earned him Song of the year at the South African Hip Hop Awards.
Dreamteam’s Gigi Lamayne, born Genesis Gabriella Tina Manney, proved to her critics that she is more than just a pretty face but a solid rapper with killer rhymes.
Gigi (22) has worked with industry heavyweights like Khuli Chana, winning the Jack Daniels Music Scouts competition in 2014, and becoming the youngest performer at the Back To The City 2013 concert. Her singles “Miriam Makeba” and “Ice Cream” have topped charts on multiple radio and TV stations.
Another Durban hit maker, DJ Merlon featured on the list. After his song “Koze Kuse” featuring Mondli became one of the biggest songs of 2014/2015, DJ Merlon cemented his presence in the music industry, with many DJs incorporating his music on their sets.
DJ Merlon called on Mondli again with another banger titled “Ubugingqiginqi”. He featured Heavy K, Zano and Unathi Msengana on other memorable songs in his debut album Original Copy.
Rapper, music producer and songwriter Nasty C born David Ngcobo (18) entered the industry with his hit single “Juice Back” with a killer remix featuring Nigeria’s Davido and Cassper Nyovest.
Named ‘The Freshman” at the South African Hip Hop Awards, where he also won Mixtape of the Year award. Nasty C is one of the youngest breakthrough acts of 2016. He is currently working on his debut album.
Prince Kaybee’s debut album Wajellwa Foreal has been making up party scenes throughout the festive season, while his single “Better Days” featuring Audrey has torn up dance floors across South Africa.
His second monster track with crossover appeal, Wajellwa, has been a social media phenomenon. With a debut album featuring vocalists Thiwe, Ziyon and Dr Malinga, this Free State-born hit maker has proven that he is indeed one to look out for in 2016.
Also recognized in the Hottest Newcomers rundown is the City Rains hit maker Mobi Dixon, whose talent has spoken volumes for him. This young DJ signed to Soul Candi has featured East London vocalist Msaki on the hit single “Love Color Spin”. Dixon recently performed at the MTV Base Klipdrift Golden Beats Tour in Khayelitsha, sharing the stage with dance music geniuses MiCasa.
The song with international appeal “Save Me” took the nation by storm, earning Timo ODV a much-deserved popularity. This DJ/vocalist and producer from the East Rand, signed to Universal has also worked with Matthew Gold.
MTV Base Roundtable: Hottest Newcomers 2016 premieres on MTV Base (DStv Channel 322) on Friday 5 February at 17:00 with a repeat on the same evening at 22:00, and then again on Saturday 6 February at 11:30 and Monday 8 February at 09:00.