With the Botswana music industry already growing at an amazing pace, Ghetto Rural, a musical group from Francistown, is taking over the limelight countrywide by showcasing multi-talents of house, Kwaito and Kwaito kwasa.
Speaking last week, the youthful leader of the group, Mompoloki Mpelegang, a.k.a Speedo, revealed that he and the 24-year-old Tsaone Phange from Matsiloje formed the group in 2008 and released their debut album in September 2010.
“We started this kind of music, blending all three genres of House, Kwaito and Kwaitokwasa music into one album because we realized that Botswana is very passionate about these three genres and we were also driven by the passion we have in these music,” he explained.
The album, titled Kasi to Kasi, has six full tracks, with two extra instrumental tracks. The first track is Township Life (Kasi to Kasi), the title track of the album. Others are Heat (House tune) Sthandwa and Sesfi’Kile, which are Kwaitokwasa and Kwaito tracks. The bonus tracks are Holiday and Midnight Express, both house tunes.
Narrating his upbringing and back ground, Mpelegang revealed that he grew up in the location of Somerset in Francistown where Kwaito was at its peak. That kick-started his passion for the music.
“I started listening to music when I was only 10 years old, and my passion grew from there,” he said.
With his passion for music, Mpelegang then roped in his long-time friend, Mpange, to start a group for which they both shared a passion and talent. He further revealed that after forming the group, they started performing for free at different events like political rallies and weddings to market their talents.
But music has its own challenges, requiring someone who is passionate, patient, disciplined and persevering.
“The greatest challenge we have at hand as Ghetto Rural is the problem of funds to mobilize our project, but I believe we will achieve our success despite the negative forces,” Mpelegang maintained.
Opening to his feelings about the album, he said Sthandwa, a Kwaitokwasa track, is his favorite tune as it gives credit to those people in love. Another track which he said would leave fans in awe is Woza Weekend, a hit for weekend revellers in clubs and bars.
Mpelegang added that South African legends such as Mandoza, TKZEE family and the likes of Vee in Botswana have had a tremendous influence on the group’s music. He mentioned the likes of DJ Slim, now based in Gaborone, among the people who contributed to the success of the album. He said the album was recorded at a studio called Star Records in Block 7, Francistown.
“We plan to go to Mokaragana at Botswana Television (BTV) to perform and market our songs,” he quipped.
According to Mpelegang, they have so far only released about 100 CD’s which are currently doing well on the market. He said their dream is to reach out beyond the borders, shining out their talent to the world. Mpelegang added that he needs to advice the youth to study, go to school before going into music which is a risky business. He also pleaded with the locals and fellow artists to support their music.