Yanga Chief reveals in-depth why he wanted to quit music after the release of ‘UTatakho’. Life as we know it’s throwing a few hurdles in our way of measuring how resilient we can be, award-winning rapper Yanga Chief had the challenging moments that almost cost him his career.
In an interview with OkayAfrica, the 200 rappers revealed that he felt some writing was not as advantageous here in SA as it is in places like the US.
“In South African hip-hop, there’s no room to be a songwriter. It’s not like you can survive comfortably by composing songs in the States. For me, songwriting in South Africa is more of a sacrificial act in which you sell yourself for the sake of music. So that’s another relationship I have with music, that if I take care of the music, it’s going to take care of me. And even when it comes to music, and people have always said, “You’re giving away that music, whatever, whatever.” For me, it’s like I’ve never given away any album. Any song that came to me when I was in the studio or whatever and ended up in someone else’s hands, was always someone else’s song.
“So it’s just when I decided that I’m not going to continue, it was more of the ego and self and physically throwing in the towel. But looking at it now, I needed to get to that point to make a song like “Utatakho.” There are songs you make and they make the greatest mathematical sense, but they just won’t resonate. But the songs that you make with your eyes closed, and just speak, won’t be perfect on paper, but it will resonate to the listener in a way that you had not even intended. So everything just happened the way it did. Even me wanting to quit is just a lesson for other people to learn through my story, I think,” he explained.
Yanga recently released a single BBAF and a link to pre-order upcoming album Pop Star.