After weeks of deliberating over thousands of entries, Red Bull Music and Tall Racks Records have chosen 11 aspiring artists that will go into the Red Bull Music Recording Studios in Cape Town to record their songs with the Tall Racks Records artists as part of the Lift As You Rise (LAYR) project.
The Lift As You Rise project, which was debuted in March, is a collaborative project focusing on uplifting artists across South Africa. This project made use of the valuable expertise of talents such as Nasty C, Tellaman, Gemini Major, Rowlene, Lastee, and Zino D.
LAYR saw these artists come together to produce multiple open tracks which incorporated verses from the collective artists, excluding 16 bars that allowed Africa’s up and coming artists to add their verses and subsequently completing the tracks.
The 11 artists that will be living their musical dream are: Deekay_Did_It (Pietermaritzburg), Hanna (Cape Town), KDaVine (Pietermaritzburg), Msimisis (Swaziland), J_Reagz (Cape Town), Tembisile (Cape Town), Priscilla (Botswana), The Real Barry Lane (Nigeria), ThatoJessica (Johannesburg), Jay Hoodsa (Pretoria), and Flow Jones Jnr (Johannesburg).
The 11 selected artists now get a chance to complete their track with Tall Racks Records artists and its affiliates.
These tracks will be released to the public soon after. The winners will kick off their time in Cape Town at the Red Bull Cape Town Circuit main event, followed by the official after party at Shimmy’s where their collaborators will take to the stage.
More on the top 11
Hanna: Rapper, singer, and producer, Hanna was born and raised in Harare, Zimbabwe. Drawn to instruments in school, Hanna developed an ear for music from an early age. Her introduction to rap music had her obsessed with memorising and reciting complex lyrics. In February 2018, she posted a video to her Instagram and Twitter page, which went viral across the respective platforms and pages, gaining a total of 120,000+ views and nods from the likes of Nasty C and DJ Clock.
KDaVine: Kyle Hoskins, better known as KDaVine, is a South African singer, songwriter, record producer, and multi-genre artist. Born and raised in Pietermaritzburg, Kwazulu-Natal, KDaVine now resides in Johannesburg. In 2013, KDaVine released his first mixtape Oxygen, followed by 02V2 in 2014. In 2016, he released his first ever exclusive EP Elevated, which sold out in the first week. In 2018, he released his third mixtape 02V3. KDaVine is currently writing for his upcoming EP of an “Unknown Title” which is slated for release within the 3rd Quarter of 2019.
Flow Jones Jnr: A versatile musician hailing from Krugersdorp, West of Johannesburg, Kholekile Thontsi aka Flow Jones Jnr is an aspiring artist, beat maker, producer and engineer. From a young age, he always loved the hip hop genre. Although hip hop was the least favourite in his community, Flow Jones Jnr always believed his passion for contributing to the hip hop scene would one day turn into a reality.
Tembisile: Nelson Stevens, better known as Tembisile, was born in Macassar and raised in Somerset West, Cape Town. An introvert by nature, Tembisile enjoys spending his time indoors and honing on his music skills. From a young age, Tembisile was inspired to become a journalist, but his plans changed when he fell in love with music. Tembisile was fortunate to study at the New York film academy in the US for about two months. His favourite artists include Drake and Playboi Carti.
The Real Barry Lane: Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Ogunlana Oluwasegun Obaro, aka The Real Barry Lane, is a 22-year-old student and an aspiring rap artist. The Real Barry Lane went on to win the Hennessey VS Class competition in 2018.
Msimisis: From the Kingdom of Eswatini, Msimisis is a singer and songwriter. From a tender age, he has been belting out musical classics and never growing tired of honing his musical talent. Determined to crack the music industry open, he burst onto the Swazi music scene in 2009 after entering a musical talent search television show. After writing and performing alongside Swazi household names, he managed to feature on Swazi Rhythm VOL.1, catching the attention of the South African music industry. He featured and co-wrote the hit song Everything, performing it on some of South Africa’s biggest television platforms.
Jay Hoodsa: Jeremia Morwamaphaka, better known as Jay Hoodsa, was born on April 15, 2000, in Gauteng and raised in Limpopo and Pretoria. Jay Hoodsa is an African rapper, songwriter and producer. At the tender age of 10 years, Jay Hoodsa fell in love with poetry and started rapping at the age of 12. He saw it as an ideal profession in 2017, honing all his energy into improving his writing and producing skills. Recently discovered by Blaklez on Twitter, they released a song together titled The Tale which scored Jay a lot of respect as well as new fans.
DeeKay Did It: Born Zamasihi Bridgete Madlala in KwaZulu Natal on February 17, Deekay Did It grew up in a small township called Imbali, which formed a part of Pietermaritzburg. In 2007, she found herself behind the mic with producer/rapper KayDee. At the time her stage name was still DeeKay. “I got behind that mic and I was home.” In 2013 both DeeKay and Kaydee found themselves in the same indie label, Lucid Records. It was then that she really became hungry and moulded her craft. In the same year, she found herself as the runner up for Cassper Nyovest’s Gusheshe remix competition. She also found herself on the stage of the first ever Youth Durban Hip Hop Fest and many stages thereafter. She was a part of the Top 12 on the VUZU Hustle in Season 1 and was signed to DeLazy Entertainment shortly after, as part of Klutch Kollective. She maintains her old school flow on new school beats and that’s what keeps her as Africa’s Best Kept Secret.
Priscilla: Asmah Khan, better known as Priscilla, is a 19-year-old Motswana singer, who was born in Gaborone Botswana. Priscilla grew up in Jwaneng and later moved to Lobatse. She started developing the love for music at a young age through her father who was a great compiler of country music, RnB and soul classics. The love grew more and more from primary level to junior level, where she used to sing at school functions and school assemblies. This is when people started to appreciate and recognise the talent she had, which helped with her confidence. She recorded her first song in 2017 and attracted a vast number of new supporters and essentially built her fan base across the country. With all the success Priscilla has reached and achieved, she decided to release her first single titled LOVE.
Thato Jessica: Thato Jessica is a 24-year-old spirited flamboyant singer/songwriter who originates from Botswana, with a voice that matches her personality. At the age of 17, Thato became the only female artist in a Christian Hip Hop group called “X-Caliber”. At 21 years old, Thato became a solo artist, poet, fine artist and visual artist with a Bachelors Degree in Architecture from the University of Botswana. Thato Jessica’s sound can be defined as a combination of RnB and Hip Hop. Her first feature was in 2014 with Chef Gustos on a single titled Take Your Time. She later released her single in 2015 titled Show Me. Thato now sits with two projects under her belt, Seasons Ep released in 2017 and in 2018 she released Rehearsal EP, which consists of the single Problem featuring Veezo View, Addicted and Freedom.
J_Reagz: Jay Reagon aka Jay Reagz hails from Cape Town South Africa. He started his musical journey at an early age inspired by the works of Eminem. Beginning to write music and gradually falling in love with words, beats and music, he now produces tracks with lyricism, flow, passion and determination. J_Reagz has become more than just a rapper – he has developed into an artist. With music that varies from the consciousness to the club banger, Jay Reagz can do it all! Only time will tell where this artist ends up, but it can only be amongst the greats.