Thursday, April 18, 2024

Meet the king of Pod-tape

James Kebuileng Khama, commonly known as ‘James Kebu’, is a budding online broadcaster by means of podcasting.

Through podcasting, he has managed to air Botswana hip hop music online since October 2009.

A podcast is an online or non-streamed series of digital media files mainly audio and video that are released episodically and often downloaded through web syndication.

He started off his podcast, firstly as a way to publish his own music and then to help other hip hop enthusiasts on the internet. But soon after developing a niche collection of local hip hop music, he decided to make a career out of what started off merely as a hobby.

Kebu spends most of his time in his multimedia studio, compiling local playlists from up and coming hip hop artists. Apart from that he goes around different bedroom studios collecting underground music, some of which never having been played on local radio stations. A lot of artists use his podcast as a platform to showcase their talents.

Before settling down in Gaborone, James grew up in Sweden before he went to study sound design for film in Cape Town.

“I have a passion for filming and photography but music has always been my first love,” he says. “A podcast is basically an online radio station, so mine strictly plays hip hop music that has been produced in Botswana.” Kebu is very much established in the local multimedia industry, mostly behind the scenes.

He has a very huge and diverse portfolio of local hip hop music under his belt through his pod tape. As a filmmaker, he is now in the process of taking his podcast to new heights by streaming locally produced hip hop videos online.

“I am currently going around collecting underground hip hop music videos to add on to the local content of my podcast,” he says. “Many local artists are teaming up with film producers, and although the film industry has a long way to go, I have stumbled upon some very good work from people mostly referred to as amateurs.”

Kebu has been working with many local organisations. These include highly esteemed establishments such as the Botswana Music Union, Botswana Hip Hop Association, and Botswana Urban Arts Association, as well as the Copyright Society of Botswana.

He uses such organisations to obtain information about the local music industry to keep international audiences up to date with the latest in Botswana hip hop culture.

“One cannot avoid being a member of such big organisations, because that is where I go shopping for local content, which is basically my stock in trade,” he says.

Kebu not only maintains a rapidly growing podcast or online radio and television stream, but he is also a very talented underground rap artist. Most of his underground tracks can be heard on his pod tape.

To hear some of the latest Botswana hip hop tracks and videos, check out www.pod-tape.mypodcast .com.


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