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Zimbabwean hip hop

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Zimbabwean Hip Hop emerged to significance in the early 1990s.



It is unclear who to give primary credit for championing hip hop in Zimbabwe. The most mainstream acts of the time were Piece of Ebony and Midnight Magic. During this 10-year period, beginning on their own and later with the influence of Innocent Tshuma (then known as The Millennium Man), youths across the country would begin to participate in the genre largely influenced by American hip hop music being exported globally and being well received in Zimbabwe (though, it was never as popular as the genres of Museve, Reggae, Kwaito, and African House).


In November 2009, a magazine known as The Platform was released in Harare. It was meant to elevate the industry but did not stretch to other parts of the country. A follow up was made in March 2010. Shows such as Mashoko and The Circle done at The Mannernburg in Harare are also measures that have been taken to popularize hip-hop in Zimbabwe. Poets and emcees include Osama, Outspoken, Synik, Upmost, Godobori, Aura, Blackbird (now known as Temple) among others. Some of these poets incite politics in their music and have started a movement known as House Of Hunger.

Mashoko later developed from a once a month festival known as Shoko Fest, which included international acts like Hired Gun (USA) and Akala, among others. Many Zimbabwean emcees performed at the show, ongoing since 2010. The same year, Zim Hip Hop Awards began; though slammed by controversy, they have survived to the present day.

Style and influences


There are many Zimbabwean Hip hop acts around the world that enjoy varying degrees of commercial success. The majority of them are heavily influenced by American East Coast hip hop, with the younger acts leaning more toward the new dominant American dirty south sound.

Zimbabwean identity

There are a few acts that are now trying to move away from the influence of American hip hop and reinvent themselves by building and branching off from the remnants of the "Urban grooves" era. "Urban Grooves" refers to all the urban genres of music that were popular in Zimbabwe at the time (Hip hop, R'n'B, Dancehall, Afro pop). The "Urban Grooves" movement and those within have been maturing. At the same time, the laws have re-integrated international music according to the growth of the Zimbabwean local industry, where the subgenres of "Urban grooves" are now developing into whole and independent genres of their own. There seems to exist a visible effort on the part of a lot of current MC's to experiment, redefine and own a sound that could be recognised as Zimbabwean Hip hop. Some artists such as Neville Sigauke(Mbira Dze Hip hop),[1] YStan and BlqLpz are doing this by making a more extensive use their own traditional languages (Shona and Ndebele), and local instruments such as Mbira, Marimba, Ngoma (traditional drums) or Hosho (traditional shaker).



Besides just airplay, some radio stations have devoted segments dedicated to the one genre.

  • School of Hip Hop [2]
  • Zim Hip Hop Explosion [3]


There is a few shows dedicated to Hip-Hop on Zimbabwe's local broadcaster.


  1. ^ "Meet the Inventor of a new genre - zimlink". 22 March 2014. Retrieved 21 April 2018.
  2. ^ "Power FM: School of Hip Hop Top 10 Local Charts". Retrieved 20 September 2013.
  3. ^ "Sliq Kay – Power FM". Retrieved 21 April 2018.
  4. ^ "Hip Hop 263".
This page was last edited on 14 March 2019, at 07:22
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