The death of South African Rapper, AKA is a tragedy felt in Africa and around the world. It represents the death of one of the brightest stars in the landscape of contemporary African and world music.
A Fella In Versace
I bought AKA’s ‘Touch My Blood’ album the day it came out, and when I first played ‘Fela In Versace‘, it felt like an important milestone had been reached in contemporary urban African music by a man whose life and times paint an interesting portrait.
AKA is considered one of the most influential and successful musicians in the African hip-hop scene, known for his distinctive flow, powerful lyrics, and electrifying live performances.
The life and times of South African Rapper, AKA begin on January 28, 1988, in Cape Town, South Africa.
AKA began his musical career in 2002, when he formed the rap group Entity, which was well received in the burgeoning South African underground Hip Hop scene.
However, in 2011 AKA decided to pursue a solo career and released his first solo album, “Alter Ego” which was a commercial success.
“Alter Ego” earned AKA numerous awards and nominations, including winning the 2011 Metro FM Award for Best Hip Hop Album, and the 2012 South African Music Award for Best Male Artist.
AKA followed the success of Alter Ego” with the release of his second album, “Levels”, in 2016, which was even more successful and solidified his position as one of South Africa’s top rappers and also as one of Africa’s best contemporary musicians following the monster “All Eyez On Me”collaboration with Burna Boy.
In addition to his vibrant and unapologetic Social Media presence, particularly on Twitter, one thing AKA was also known for is his socially conscious lyrics, which often addressed political and social issues in South Africa where he was seen as a vocal critic of the South African government because of his outspoken political views.
Ultimately, Fela In Versace is a sublime example of AKA’s talent because with Kiddominant’s authentic presence, it comes off as a smooth street celebration of the contemporary urban Pan-African experience in which AKA was both participant and creator.
While AKA could seamlessly boast about catching planes as others catch emotions, he could also in the same breath share his disappointment about missing his baby’s first ultrasound.
AKA was instrumental in the creation of a universal contemporary urban African sound which has been solidified by the rise of Amapiano and Afrobeats.
Peep the ‘Fela In Versace’ video below as well as our Book Review of Fela Kuti’s Autobiography ‘This Bitch of A Life’ proving why AKA tapped Fela’s legend for his song.
Aside from his music, AKA was also a successful entrepreneur, involved in several business ventures, including a clothing line and a tech start-up. He was widely regarded as a role model for young people in South Africa and has inspired many aspiring musicians and entrepreneurs with his success story.
In conclusion, the life and times of South African Rapper AKA show that not only will AKA be remembered as a talented musician and entrepreneur, but also as a visionary.
AKA is survived by his daughter Kairo, and his next album Mass Country is slated for release on 24 February 2023.