Maskandi music must be one of the evolving music genres in South Africa. While it may not have the appeal of AmaPiano and Gqom, it is deeply rooted in the country’s musical history. This list of Maskandi musical artists highlights the evolution of the genre and their contribution.
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Maskandi musical artists have had a significant impact in highlighting the social and economic issues facing South Africa. The genre also brought out the beauty of the Zulu language. The genre has dedicated artists and men and women flying its flag but doesn’t get the support it deserves. This list allows you to identify the artists you should consult.
10 Best Maskandi Music Artists in 2022
Who is a Maskandi artist? A Maskandi artist is a musician who sings Zulu folk music that evolves with South African society. Thus, the music genre uses traditional musical instruments such as guitars.
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Who started Maskandi music? One of the oldest Maskandi artists is John Bhengu who became famous as Sugar Drinker or Phuzushukela. He started his career playing acoustic guitar and later switched to electric guitar. His music created a huge market for Maskandi music.
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Who is the best Maskandi artist? The evolution of the genre is undeniably impressive. The genre, originating in South Africa, has evolved over the years but has remained relevant. These are the artists whose efforts in its popularity cannot go unnoticed.
1. Khuzani “King Khuba” Mpungose
Who is the most famous Maskandi artist? Khuzani “King Khuba” Mpungose has to be one of the finest voices in the Maskandi music world. His name electrified Mzansi through his music. In fact, this list would suffice if he was the only Maskandi artist mentioned.
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Who is the king of Maskandi music? Khuzani “King Khuba” Mpungose is one of the finest vocals in the genre. He was crowned King of Maskandi in 2017 during the Impucuzeko Maskandi Festival. It has not depreciated in musical value. He hasn’t stopped singing either.
Who has the most awards in Maskandi? Khuzani has the most awards in the genre. His career has developed considerably over the past twelve years. He’s responsible for some of the best maskandi songs like mesilingo, Ngikhule Kanzima and Elika Kbouba.
Ntencane is another iconic star in the Maskandi music world. Interestingly, he might be among the younger artists of the genre, although his angelic voice is worth listening to. You will also fall in love with his work.
Ntencane has a list of Maskandi songs to his name, although his best comes from his most recent project, the Uboya Enkomeni album.
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Juluka was a South African band formed by Sipho Mchunu and Johnny Clegg in 1969. The band was associated with the mass movement against apartheid. The style of the group is Mbaqanga and Maskandi. The band also played various musical instruments like guitar, traditional Zulu saxophones and synthesizers.
Between 1979 and 1997, the band released eight albums. He also had three compilations and eight singles and EPs.
4. Igcokama Elisha
Mthandeni Manqele, known as Igcokama Elisha, is another outstanding voice in Maskandi music. The president of Red Nation, the name given to his followers, is a singer and guitarist.
He worked with Vusi Nova in the song Wena Ukhalelani. To date, he has seven albums to his credit. You should discover his latest project, Pistols.
Sfanele Dumisani Zulu, known to many as Mzukulu, is another prominent figure in the world of Maskandi music in South Africa. He is famous for his magical and liberating voice. Interestingly, he comes from a musical family. He is the grandson of Zimele Buthelezi. He is also the son of the late Mzansi performers Phumangelakhe and Thuleleni (Ma-Hlela) Buthelezi.
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He is signed to Universal Music Pyt. You can’t afford not to have it on your playlist. Discover his first album, Vukani Nonkewhich he published in 2017.
6. Busi Mhlongo
Victoria Busisiwe Mhlongo, known as Busi Mhlongo, was a musical icon. She was a singer, songwriter and dancer from Inanda in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. She was raised in a musically inclined family and even married Early Mabuza, a drummer.
As a Grammy nominee, Busi’s music lives on despite her passing. Some of his most beloved albums include Amakholwa and Freedom.
7. Inkosi Yamagcokama
Inkosi Yamagcokama’s contribution to the popularity of Maskandi music cannot be ignored. One of his most beloved songs, Dear Diary, is considered a national favorite.
8. Shiyani Ngcobo
Shiyani Ngcobo was a Maskandi guitarist and musician. He was also a teacher whose main goal was to spread the popularity of the genre outside the country. Her expertise in the genre has earned her the opportunity to tour in the US, UK, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium and Denmark. He also taught the Maskandi guitar style at the University of KwaZulu-Natal School of Music.
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Ngcobo’s songs provided a picture of the life of a Zulu migrant worker. They featured themes such as loss, broken families and masculinity. Musically, he mixed his Maskandi guitar with the Ngoma dance style drums.
Unlike most of his compatriots, Shiyani resisted the use of electronic drum kits and occasionally played igogogo. One of his most beloved projects includes his album Introducing Shiyani Ngcobo.
9. Bhekumuzi Luthuli
Bhekumuzi Luthuli was a renowned Maskandi artist from Maphumulo, KwaZulu-Natal. He started making traditional Zulu music using a homemade guitar. In the 1980s he was affiliated with the group Mbaqanga, Oshimi but later embarked on a solo career.
He released nineteen albums and Impeempe, one of them, reached platinum status, selling over 50,000 copies. His second and third outings, Wongikonzela Enhlizlyweni and Unembeza won the OKTV.es awards
10. Moses Mchunu
Moses Mchunu is a Maskandi artist from KwaZulu-Natal. He is famous for his hit, Qhwayilahle. The hit song was featured on the Indestructible Beat of Soweto album in 1985. Its musical style is considered a neo-traditional form of Mbaqanga.
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Who was the first Maskandi artist?
John Bhengu had a significant impact on the history of Maskandi music. Therefore, most people regard him as the first Maskandi artist.
This list of top Maskandi musical artists reflects the growth of the genre. It’s impressive how many legendary artists have been featured on the list. What’s more appealing is how young artists aren’t shy about letting Zulu Maskandi music fade away.
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Source: News in Brief