Youth Day: Benny Afroe stands out from the rest with his genre-fluid music
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Vth Season's young and fresh music artist Benny Afroe is flying the South African flag high as he expresses himself with his genre-fluid fusion of African sounds and feelings.
Growing up in two small towns, Benny Afroe, whose real name is Benny Riba, was surrounded by music from his bass guitarist father.
The “Yohh” hitmaker said he always knew deep down that music would be a big part of his life. By age 13, he had produced his first full song and has never looked back.
“Music has always been around. My childhood was surrounded by a lot of music, so a part of me always knew. I knew I was onto something when I produced a full song by myself. I’ve never stopped making music since that day.”
While the ever-changing music industry and its challenges is a tough place to be for upcoming artists, the young musician says he battles with the internet.
"The internet can be a blessing and a curse at the same time. There are so many musicians online that it makes it hard for one to gain recognition. That will forever remain a challenge for young musicians in the internet age,“ he says.
With hits like “Know My Name, Goodbye” and a collaboration with award-winning vocalist Ami Faku, “This Feeling”, the youngster shows no signs of slowing down, just like his role models, Kanye West, Sjava and Drake.
Staying focused and grounded is his goal.
“I always try to remember why I’m in the industry. It’s because of the music, so I try to focus on music as much as I can.
“My love for music is unexplainable. I’ve made so many sacrifices to get to this point. Everything else comes second,” said Afroe.
He places emphasis on Youth Day, saying it “is all about celebrating the youth and reminding them that the future belongs to them. It is also a time to inspire and nurture young minds”.
“Youngsters should never stop working on their craft. You’re not good enough until you’re good enough,” said the singer.