The Question? The Answer: The Truth

-Lourens Loki Corleone

So, brothers and sisters, we find ourselves in a very interesting time for local music.

For a long period of its existence, South Africa was cut off from the outside world and locally produced entertainment had to adhere to old-fashioned values and sentiments.

So, when the veil lifted we seemed to make a grab for every shred of international culture we could. We were hungry for something new, something fresh.

In the span of just a few years we lost a lot of who we are in the raging torrent of outside influences. Every 20- or thirty-something woman wanted to be Carrie from Sex & the City, every teenage girl wanted to be Britney or Amy Lee, every boy wanted to be Bam Margera or James Hepburn and the men…well, the men just kept watching rugby religiously like nothing has changed.

By the time we hit the 2000′s, we were slaves to what the world wants us to be. Not that we lost our culture…no, not at all. We saw the acceptance of the world as a act of rebellion against the older, more conservative generation.

Then, something strange happened. The older generation, maybe remembering their own youth, started accepting the strangeness and chaos that seem to define our generation, and we didn’t like it one bit. No Sir.

What do you do to liberate yourselves and at the same time manage to shock a generation that has been battered and bruised by the times so much, they are numb and blind to your constant changing “scene”?

My theory is this: The truth.

We have rejected big parts of our own culture for so long, that it has become the next big step in defining who we are while still being foreign enough to keep the generation gap intact. Why we (subconsciously) feel the need for this is a whole different debate, of course.

Instead of burying ourselves deep in foreign culture, it seems as though we realised that just showing our true colours would be enough to shake the foundations we love to taunt so much.

Why not scratch the stereotypes wide open? Why not speak the truth about the world our generation finds itself in? Not only can we all relate, but we can finally free ourselves from our self-imposed cultural shackles that hold us back as a people and as a country.

So, what is the secret behind this revelation?

Like many things in this world, it all starts with music. Pioneers like Die Antwoord have shocked us all by telling us exactly what we want to hear: The truth.

Singing and rapping about their own experiences seem to cultural barriers as we all have the same hopes, the same dreams and the same country we call home.

This started a tidalwave that is still going strong, even spawning collaborations with other established local artists, so I suggest looking at these videos. It speaks much louder than I could ever explain:

Die Antwoord - Enter The Ninja (dirty version)

Die Heuwels Fantasties feat. Jack Parow – Die Vraagstuk


Jack Parow – Cooler As Ekke

All I know is, “never seen zef so fre$h”!

18 Comments

Filed under Ramblings, Videos

18 responses to “The Question? The Answer: The Truth

  1. Clyde

    Amen brother, preach it!!

  2. Zizzou

    Great post! We are growing a very interesting dynamic culture. What Australia has done is interesting; their leaders decided that culture, and pop culture at that is a perfect place for your country to make a mark. They pumped loads of funds into their Media (bands, soapies, movies) and made sure that they had a shot of competing with the big earners. You just have to look at bands like The Vines, Wolfmother, Youth Group, Kylie Minogue, The Presets, Nick Cave, Silverchair, ACDC, Jet, Empire of the Sun, Pendulum; to realize the potential of good exposure. Seether came down for a tour a couple years ago, Shaun Morgan, said on MK that he doesn’t understand why the major SA labels don’t send their bands overseas? I have to agree. Parlotones have a video on MTV now, I hope they can set the bar for other SA bands and actually “give it a shot” on the big stage, not merely content themselves with MK fame. Then again, it is easier said than done.

    • I agree. It is almost as if we are dealing with a nationwide self-esteem problem that we just can’t seem to escape from, despite so much talent.

      We don’t have to look far in Cape Town to find artists that can perform on equal footing with the biggest names overseas, but its as if the local industry tries its best to stifle growth in exchange for a quick buck and fleeting sensationalism.

      The Parlatones are a different story altogether, though. While I’ve never been a big fan, I’ve always appreciated them pioneering the way for other bands to try and think about the bigger picture. However, these days if seems to be like they are just stamping out another ambiguous albums one after the other to ensure continued radio play, along with generic music videos.

      Now that they are getting international exposure, I really hope they find their roots again become somewhere they seemed to have lost substance, as if they sold their souls for success.

      I really hope they don’t become our country’s own faustian tragedy.

  3. Silvia

    Only thing about the “Truth” is that they are not telling the truth at all. A couple professional clowns doing a method acting bit. Get your facts straight. Ninja is not real, or truth. He is a failed rap artist who created this entire fake image to sell music

    • Truth is just a matter of perception. It ain’t the truth for you, but for people who don’t know any better, it hits the spot. Thanks for the comment :)

    • He is very clear about the fact that his current persona is an assimilation of different cultures, “fucked into one person” as he so boldly states.

      As Tecla (from YourLMG fame) said so elequently over on her blog, you either hate it or you love it.

      Ninja (Waddy Jones) is not a respectable character, but a brave response to the counter-culture we often find ourselves absorbed into. Never take music at face-value. You’ll be surprised at how much might just pass you by if you aren’t open to really listening.

      Thanks for the comment, its always good to hear different perspectives :)

    • kim

      Dear Silvia, If I may, that’s a really narrow opinion, and you’re simply wrong. Ninja is not a FAILED rap artist, he’s a successful one right along side Yolandi Vi$$er who just played NYC where I live. I can assure you, they were smashing successes as well as being very very real. I hope you would expand your idea of what is real and what is not. NYC is a hard town, and can incorporate performance artists as musicians, musicians as actors, and actors as performance artists. Your view is so narrow, that it doesn’t seem like you can allow for anything creative.

  4. Silvia

    Im just wondering why they made up these fake personas of Ninja and Yolandi when they could have just made the same music and been themself, for me it was when I asked Yolandi “are you married to Ninja” and she said “No, we are just friends” Why lie about THAT? They have a kid, everyone in SA knows they are a married couple with a kid. But ask them as Die Antwoord: They say they are just friends who met when they were small. Why the lie, seems like it has no reason behind it. Is it just for the fake white trash image? Yolandi went to best arts school in SA, how come the fake uneducated act? She is a classicly trained actress. WHy whywhY?

    • They most probably do it for the same reason Britney was ‘the innocent’ virgin‘, or Lilly Allen is the ‘I-say-anything-I-want-cuz-I’m-a-hardcore-bitch‘.
      Britney was obviously doing her rounds, and Lilly is probably quite a nice girl in the real world. But people don’t want to see nice girls. The majority will spend money on things that are unique, things that scare them, things that hit close to home :)

    • So, are you honestly complaining about the fact that a professionally trained actress is acting? I would love to see a actress with less skill attempt the same role.

      There is nothing wrong with living yourself into a role, and I’m pretty sure that if they are happy with it, the rest of us just have to sit back and see what they have in store for us next.

      Every incarnation of of Waddy Jones is distinctly different, so the same will obviously go for the pair. If it bothers you so much, why even bother commenting about it?

      It’s because positive or not, there is no such thing as bad publicity. People are talking, people are writing, people are commenting…which is exactly what they intended ;)

    • kim

      Dear Silvia,
      Were you as harsh against The White Stripes who lied and said they were brother and sister before finally admitting they were actually married? I also read them as artists and don’t read them as uneducated. I think that’s only what you perceive other’s as perceiving, when you are wrong about what we know and don’t know. I am an artist and knew i was looking at artists from day one. I don’t need Yolandi to confirm or deny that. Also, anyone that has a computer can find pictures of Yolandi and Ninja AND BABY. So, it’s not as big a “secret” or a “lie” as you think.

      For the fans, the real fans of the music, all this secrets and lies is merely amusing because of what it does to people like you, not because of what it “means” in “reality”.

      Don’t forget, this is a generation that was raised on the certain knowledge, that, ‘there is no spoon’.

    • 2silvia

      ALRIGHT NOW. Yo Landi and Ninja aren’t together and aren’t married, they aren’t frontin about anything so you can stop with the accusations. Yo Landi has a boyfriend who she openly admits to cheating on. And Ninja is married. Obviously their life is about being professional rappers and living that lifestyle, so they probably get drunk and fuck a lot. So what. She’s not frontin about it. Yeah they grew up together, that doesn’t mean she’s lying about being married. Check your shit before you start dissin. AND NO ONE CARES IF YOU DISAPPROVE OF THEIR TRASHY LIFESTYLE.

    • muso

      OMG your retarded.. Its all an act, and they are having fun with idiots like yourself.. whilst releaseing catchy music and excellent phrasing in their rapping skills. Coupled with amazing videos that completly remove them from top40 video hits.. Their Characters are a play on the all to common American pop/rap scene, where they have tough looking homie gangstas rapping about their money and bitches and how the rest of the world gets off on it. Open your mind … Your missing the point.. Just like you probably miss the whole point of anything that Sasha Baron Cohen does…

  5. R'eous L'awk

    Their marital status is totally separate from and irrelevant to their art. It’s kinda nosey and intrusive to ask them in the first place.

    I think it’s wonderful that these guys are not allowing us into whatever their daily existence is and giving us a spectacular, high contrast, exotic and dangerous vision of what it means to be a Zef Rap-Rave crew in South Africa.

    This project has genuine mystique, and that is the one thing that reality television and tabloid journalists have snatched away from almost every other art form.

    Waddy Jones is a genius, and should be an inspiration to all of us. Yolandi Vi$$er is the most awesome woman in music.

    What’s not to love?

  6. FAKE OR NOT, I really love their music so much!! A Cool new zef style that is taken over the world. Found some very hot stuff on their uber coole fansite as well, checkit here: http://www.dieantwoordzeflings.com

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