Premiere: Senyaka – Don’t Judge Me Bad

For their latest reissue, Amsterdam’s Rush Hour Records have unearthed the soulful electronic productions of Senyaka Kekana, a legendary South African musician, actor and comedian who played a key role in the development of kwaito in the mid 90s. Though originally released on his 1987 album Fuquza (Dance), this is the first time that both this track and its deeper A-side ‘Bayanyonyoba’ will see press on a 12” vinyl single.

Hailing from the township of Soweto where kwaito was born, Senyaka was heavily influenced by the American synth-pop and disco productions of the mid to late 1980s, as we can hear clearly in this upbeat yet melancholic track. Over a driving 4×4 drum machine beat, the chugging staccato guitar and tender synth chords lay a gentle bed for Senyaka’s heart-felt vocal. His choice of sounds informed the development of kwaito music, which would later have the opportunity to flourish into the mainstream when Nelson Mandela’s democratically elected presidency ended economic sanctions, transforming the South African music industry. Senyaka passed away in 2015, with the news of his death making national news on South African’s public broadcaster SABC.

Senyaka – Bayanyonyoba 12″ is out 15th May – buy from Rush Hour and Juno.

For more sounds of South Africa on STW:
Diggers Directory: DJ Okapi
Premiere: Al Etto – Hold On To Love [Cultures of Soul]
Premiere: Benjamin Ball – Flash A Flashlight (Gerd Janson Remix) [Cultures of Soul] Diggers Directory: Matt Temple (Matsuli Music)
Premiere: Focus – Hay-Hay [Crown Rule]

For more Rush Hour on STW:
Live at Dance Tunnel: Antal
Our Top 10 Rush Hour Rediscoveries
Premiere: Claud Rodap – Zouklove
Antal’s Top 10 Records From Japan
Premiere: A Band Called Flash  – Starfall


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