The American DJ and Presenter has become synonymous with global hip hop culture with his work for networks like MTV and his radio show, Sway In The Morning. He has opened up his show's must loved Freestyle challenge to many South African rappers when they are doing press in the US, so fans were so excited to hear he'd be coming to SA!
Earlier this year it was announced that Sway would be coming to Johannesburg as part of the #CastleLitteUnlocks concert series with Meek Mill and Post Malone.
Sway flew in to host a Cypher (aka rap battle) for emerging local rappers to show off their talent! Fans were excited for the opportunity to show Sway what they got but Sjava noticed something this morning.
After the Cypher at the Ticketpro Dome, Sjava noticed that there were only English-speaking rappers on the roster and he was not impressed.
He decided to let his fans know of his concerns via twitter here:
Sjava's concerns are valid. Hip-hop has evolved globally to include a plethora of languages. Look at things like Kpop music, where pop stars rap in Korean, becoming the global sensation it is today. It shows how diverse rap has become.
Given that South Africa has both a rich hip-hop community and 11 official languages, it is a bit concerning that Sway thought it fit to limit us to the kind of hip-hop he's used to. In a time where accurate representation on international platforms matters more than ever, it's disappointing to see so much of our existing rap culture being excluded.
Fans also weighed in on the conversation:
What do you think? Did Sway do it all wrong or is Sjava being sensitive?
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main image credit: Shen Scott, ZAlebs