By Kabelo Mosate
Vakele Genu has been in the music scene for over a decade now. He might not be well known in the commercial zone just yet, but he is setting the underground scene on fire. ‘Pureful Artistic Ginger’, as most people might know him by, is a 21-year-old rapper from Uitenhage, Port Elizabeth.
Genu is a second year BA student, majoring in drama, music and journalism and media studies. In 2001, he started recording his own songs in studio. Genu sent his demo to Chaka Chaka records in 2004 and got good reviews, but when he was told to change his style, Genu refused the offer. As an underground rapper, he says he wanted to keep true to himself and not be influenced by commercial fads. “I do my own music and don’t want other people to interfere with that process, as they will dilute the meaning behind me and the music that I do”. Also, in 2004, Genu entered the Rap Olympics which were held in Cape Town and came in second out of 44 contestants.
As a man of many talents, he not only writes lyrics but does playwriting as well. His passion lies in art. “I’m a pure artist and I want to be known for the good work I produce,” said Genu. Thus far, Genu has worked with some of South Africa’s best underground rappers, including Cole from Cape Town and Cabio, who resides in Johannesburg. He is also working on an R&B soul mix tape which he wishes to release in November.
But his major dream is to see his album Sacrosanct Gift be released. According to Genu, the name for his album was inspired by ‘the purity of his music’. “It is the epitome of my life and the experiences that I’ve gone through. It is also a gift to all those who listen,” he said. His two singles like ‘Moved On’ and ‘Notes From The Heart’ were released on audio and played on music stations like KQ and Kingfisher fm in P.E. Genu says he draws his inspiration from legendary producers like J Dealer who recently passed away and in his honour, he has done cover versions of two of his songs which will be featured on the album.
A man of many skills with a voice to inspire, Genu is just waiting to be heard and get his chance to shine which he says is coming soon. Watch out for Sacrosanct Gift sure to be released soon.