Lesenke artist, AirDee. Picture: Supplied
Lesenke artist, AirDee. Picture: Supplied

Youth Day: AirDee says the 1976 fight is not over yet

By Alyssia Birjalal Time of article published Jun 16, 2021

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South African young Lesenke artist and producer, AirDee has quickly made a name for himself in the music industry.

In his short career he has already worked with music game-changers like Cassper Nyovest, Kwesta, Nadia Nakai, DJ Vigilante, Yanga Chief, Kid X, Locnville and YoungstaCPT.

The young star spoke to IOL Entertainment about his career and challenges young people face in the industry.

Tell us more about Lesenke music?

It’s a mixture of Kwaito elements with all the other genres, mainly hip hop.

I grew up listening to a lot of vinyl records and the other name for vinyl in southern Sesotho is Lesenke.

When did you realise that music was your future?

“I have been making music since I was 16.

I started out as a very good Sotho rapper then got introduced to beat boxing and music production in my high school years.

This is when I realised that I could make a living out of it.

As my classmates would give me their lunch box money in exchange for beats.

I just fell in love with the idea of getting paid for doing what I love.

What are some of the challenges facing youth today?

I think the youth of today face a lack of knowledge when it comes to the business side of music.

Everyone is obsessed with the idea of being successful in the music business but no one is ready to actually take some time and learn more about the actual business side of it.

Who do you gather inspiration from?

Production-wise it’s Dr Dre, Kanye West, Pharrell Williams, Cardiak, London on Da Track, DeCap and Cardo Got Wings.

How do you stay grounded and focused?

I always put God first in whatever I do and I trust myself to the core.

Whenever I experience difficulties in life I constantly have to remind myself of the reason why I started, how far I have come and who I do it for.

AirDee. Picture: Instagram

Your biggest achievement?

Being part of the production team that worked on the title sequence for SABC1’s “uBettina Wethu”.

I have always wanted to work on projects like that and shout out to DJ Sphectacula and Naves for making that dream come true.

What does Youth Day mean for you?

It means commemoration of the fallen 1976 youth.

It represents youth power, unity, and strength.

The great sacrifice that they had to endure so we could have rights to free, equal, and fair education.

However, I believe the fight is not over as yet.

We have to pick up from where they left off.

We still have challenges such as the high unemployed youth rate, increases in student fees, and the fight for financial freedom.

We are not free until we are all financially free.

Advice for young artists?

Do you, forget about the next person and focus on your sound.

Your greatest competitor is yourself.

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