Apple Music announce AWEN as the latest Isgubhu cover star

Apple Music has announced French-Senegalese dance music singer-songwriter and producer, AWEN (real name Lucille Kante) as its latest Isgubhu cover star. Her debut album Redemption (2021), moves between soulful Afro House and deep spiritual trip hop and features Umlazi-born, self-taught Afro House producer and DJ, Enoo Napa on the title-track “Redemption”. As a frequent collaborator with various Afro House artists from all over Africa, AWEN’s incorporation of multiple genres and sonic elements into her music is testament to her constant growth and ongoing journey. 

AWEN has also created an exclusive Isgubhu playlist that features tracks that fuel her musical fire and that showcase Africa’s rich dance music talent through the years. 

“I had great fun curating the Isgubhu playlist for Apple Music. I included some timeless classics, such as Tony Allen’s ‘African Man’ just because those tunes paved the way for African dance music as we know it today. I also included some new gems from artists I love and admire such as Black Coffee, Sun El-Musician, Msaki and Black Motion; you will also find a few tunes from my album Redemption. What do all these tracks have in common? They all take from various influences to create a unique form of soulfulness that makes us feel more alive,” she tells Apple Music.

Taking over Isgubhu By… for this month is eSwatini-hailing electronic producer and deep house DJ, !Sooks (real name Sukoluhle Dlamini). Having been enthralled by African music and synth sound creation, !Sooks’ first milestone came when he released his debut EP, 7 Years of Colour (2016) under Antidote Music, quickly following this up with his second release, A Different Place (2016) under international label Deepstitched Records. Since then he’s blazed a unique trail while honing his ambient, moody groove.

“Growing up, my dad exposed me to a lot of amazing music, especially jazz, which inspired my love for music as a whole. This particular selection showcases my love for a variety of sounds within African dance music and it is this plethora of sounds that inspires my music production today. My selection for Apple Music features music from South Africa, Namibia and Eswatini, which to me shows the growth of African dance and electronic music. We have come of age and the sound has moved from the underground scene and has stepped into the mainstream through the advancement of Amapiano, Afro House and other emerging African dance music subgenres,” he explains.

Launched in early 2021, Isgubhu is the definitive home of African Dance and Electronic music on Apple Music and spotlights and elevates the work of African Electronic DJs, producers and creatives. Isgubhu, a Zulu word meaning beat and used to refer to a banging song, pays homage to an evergreen set of genres and the African artists who have played a pivotal role in shaping the Dance and Electronic scene across the world.

Isgubhu also houses a collection of playlists including Spotlight On – a focus on boutique labels like Soul Candi, House Afrika, Stay True Sounds, Uganda’s Hakuna Kulala & Nyege Nyege Tapes, Kenya’s Gondwana KE, and eSwatini’s Antidote Music, as well as Isgubhu Voices – a focus on the best Dance and Electronic tracks that feature vocals.

Listen to Isgubhu only on Apple Music http://apple.co/Isgubhu 

ROOKIE USA Donates R50 000 to Reach for a Dream Foundation

Rookie USA is known for it’s love for helping children as much as they can. Their annual donations brighten even the dimmest of smiles.

Rookie USA partnered with well-known influencers and friends of the brand to contribute to the amazing donation of R50 000 to the Reach For A Dream Foundation.

“Reach For A Dream seeks to alleviate the strain that life-threatening illnesses place on sick children and their families by providing these dreamers with the opportunity to believe in their greatest wish. The Foundation has been providing dreams to children all around the country for 33 years and counting. These young children are under extreme pressure to deal with these medical issues and are in desperate need of encouragement. In addition, Reach For A Dream offers the child a magical moment to regain their childhood that is being lost to an illness.”

“The foundation is grateful to have partnered with Rookie USA in the journey to inspire, give hope, strength, and courage in the lives of our dream children” says Natalie Lazaris, Business Head for Reach for a Dream Foundation.

Rookie USA is a kids-only, multi-branded premium retail destination, now in South Africa. It is a retail experience focused on kids from the ages of 0-20 years old ranging from apparel to accessories and footwear. Rookie USA offers consumers a collection of iconic brands including Converse, Nike, Jordan, Hurley and Levi’s to provide a complete head-to-toe kid’s experience.

Check out Rookie USA’s website www.rookieusa.co.za and Instagram page @Rookieusa.za. 
#RookieZA

7 reasons to turn over a new leaf in 2022 with Tetley Green Tea

(Image credit: @ataleofsauceandspice)

If you’ve decided to turn over a new leaf this year, make sure it’s a Tetley Green Tea leaf! Green tea has been enjoyed for centuries and offers a variety of intrinsic health benefits, making it the perfect addition to a healthy lifestyle.

“Getting healthy is at the top of most peoples’ New Year’s resolutions, but we often set ourselves goals that are unrealistic and that set us up for failure,” explained Candice Sessions, Tetley Marketing Manager. “The best way to get into a healthy routine is to make small, purposeful changes that are sustainable. One of the simplest and most effective ways to get healthier is to include Tetley Green Tea into your daily diet. It’s the perfect hydrating antioxidant boost, and can be used for iced teas and smoothies too. We’ve also shared some of our favourite healthy Green tea recipes to help everyone start 2022 on the right foot!”

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Anele Zondo named new CATRICE brand ambassador

German makeup brand CATRICE, represented by Cosmetix in South Africa, has appointed TV presenter, actress and model Anele Zondo as its new local brand ambassador. 

Taking to social media, the ever-sassy and fun-loving Anele said that she was excited to sign a first-of-its-kind deal in Africa. The One Mic and Massive Music host’s acting career began with a recurring role in the second season of the Mzansi Magic drama series It’s Complicated, followed by Saints and Sinners and award-winning soapie The River. Anele has also just launched her rap career with her debut single “Ingwe” featuring Given Zulu, which has been well received by the public. 

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PEP partners with Loxion Kulca

I first heard about the clothing brand Loxion Kulca way back in 2005 when I was the Assistant Producer for the SABC 1 show “Spirit Sundae”. Loxion Kulca sponsored our presenters’ clothing at the time and the duo that founded the iconic urban street fashion brand, Wandi Nzimande and Sechaba Mogale, were huge entrepreneurs.

PEP has announced that the latest collection from Loxion Kulca is now exclusively available in over 1,000 PEP stores, making this range more readily available to customers.

“We have rolled out this collection exclusively to most of our PEP stores nationwide, following a very successful pre-launch in a few PEP stores last year. We always aim to make fashion as affordable and accessible as possible and having Loxion Kulca in more of our stores will make this renowned brand more accessible to our customers”, says PEP Chief Marketing Executive, Beyers van der Merwe.

The original Mzansi township brand, Loxion Kulca, was co-founded 21 years ago as a brand by the people, for the people. As an iconic and proudly South African clothing label, Loxion Kulca is an important part of the country’s streetwear heritage, culture and fashion scene. The brand gave birth to a lot of movements and trends. Bucket hats, that have made their way back into fashion, are some of the items that the brand introduced and is renowned for in South Africa.

PEP continuously improves and evolves to stay relevant and partnering with a local brand such as Loxion Kulca is one of the many ways they are delighting their customers. PEP’s customers are at the heart of everything they do, which is why their biggest priority will be to offer enough options for everyone to look and feel good, everyday.

Check out the PEP Facebook and Instagram pages for more details about the collection.

NeoVita Chewable Vitamins – Review

As the year draws to a close and the new year beckons, taking stock of one’s health becomes important, especially as one gets older. I’ve already made a list of the specialists I need to see in 2022, but for day-to-day health, vitamins can be a part of one’s arsenal of defense for increased wellness, alongside exercise and eating well, of course.

A few weeks ago, the team from NeoVita vitamins reached out to me to review four bottles from their new range.

As someone who already takes about 4 pills a day for other health issues, taking more tablets is not what I am looking for, so I was glad to hear that NeoVita are actually flavoured, chewable vitamins.

I was sent the RADIANT SKIN, PROBI-TUM PROBIOTIC, LUSCIOUS HAIR and DAILY WOMEN’S MULTI-VITAMIN bottles from the new NeoVita range.

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Kickin It With Kim Jayde – Season 2

After a year of eager anticipation, the season premiere of “Kickin it with Kim Jayde” has officially dropped on YouTube.

Directed, produced and hosted by the multi-award winning TV host and business entertainment entrepreneur, Kim Jayde, the proudly local show is back for another exciting season for sneaker fanatics around the continent.

Kickin it with Kim Jayde’ brings together some of the top sneaker lovers in the industry, while shining a new light on some of your favourite celebrities and taste makers.

The season premiere stars special guest BLXCKIE Somnyama. With a debut album on every playlist, and the recently awarded 2021 Best Freshman of the Year at the SA Hip Hop Awards, there’s no denying his talent. We learn more about the Durban born artist’s career and hear him answer fun questions about his first kiss, first sneakers and how he won his first rap battle.

The rest of the season is just as star-studded, with internationally renown DJ Doowap, ‘Big Flexa’ Costa Titch, marketing guru King Aya and platinum selling artist Shekhinah.

 Every guest is invited to bring sneakers from their personal collection which they share more about in the show.

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Christmas at Cresta Shopping Centre

December is the best time to enjoy quality family time together. With its fun activities and abundance of adventure, Cresta makes it easy for shoppers to get their Christmas on, with their safe and innovative festive SEAson program. In addition, the first-class entertainment lineup is so impressive that shoppers will look for excuses to make multiple visits to the mall.

Cresta is a progressive mall with mixed-use spaces that bring together entertainment, leisure, health and wellness, and other novel experiences. The centre has created community spaces where people meet, socialise and build consciousness for the environment. With over 34 fish species, the CrestAquarium Fish Tank transports shoppers and especially children to a peaceful and magical space. Children learn about the importance of protecting the marine environment at the Under the Sea Marine Exploration Exhibition at Cresta, which provides a realistic experience with animatronic models where visitors feel they are on the Coast while exploring this exhibit. The exhibition reminds us of the beauty and majesty of marine life and our responsibility to protect it. Especially for inlanders to become more conscious of our impact and footprint, we teach children the importance of picking up after themselves and keeping our beaches clean and safe.

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Converse returns with student debt relief campaign #CreateNext

Converse SA launched its first movement to aiding in the alleviation of student debt in South Africa with the campaign #Kickthedebt. The focus of the campaign was to try and alleviate a portion of student debt, by making a difference to the youth as Tertiary education is incredibly expensive and as a result, student debt is exceptionally high.
 
Due to the overwhelming response received from the previous campaign, Converse SA will be giving away R2 Million towards relieving student debt once again.
 
This year, the campaign has been renamed “Create Next”. The initiative behind the campaign name is fuelled by those that broke barriers before us. We move where inspiration takes us next: when we break barriers of culture, style, and innovation, we construct new possibilities.
 
Youth development is extremely important to Converse as we need to optimize youth developmental progress. Converse promotes positive outcomes for young people by providing better opportunities. We enable students to flourish in their respective educational journeys without the fear of poverty stopping them.
 
Whilst we know that paying off student debt is vitally important in securing so many futures, Converse has gone a step further by guiding students towards their goals through mentorship by experts who have already overcome the very same hardships. Converse has a community of “All Stars” who have been taken under the Converse wing and given opportunities to be part of skill building workshops and mentorship talks with experts in their industries. Converse has enabled the ‘All Stars” to be a part of mural creations around South Africa and the brand has created opportunities for youth to have experiences around the globe.
 
In addition to the R2 Million pledge, Converse will also be giving an additional R500 000 to those who dare to live on their own terms, who break barriers and create their next opportunity. By opening doors to the next generation of creators. Calling all artists, innovators, community leaders, sports people, creators, entrepreneurs, game changers, advocates, rebels, activists, designers, and inventors.
 
Converse is reaching out to communities to tell their stories of inspiration, connection and innovation. The brand wants to help communities create what comes next in their bright future.
 
The campaign will be supported by Digital, PR, Influencers, Ambassadors, Billboards, Radio, Retail Executions and Social media
 
The level of access to entry is as simple as last time, all you have to do is visit ConverseCreateNext.co.za to submit your nomination form. Converse SA is here to bash, smash or squish that student debt that you or someone that you know may have, when it comes to their education
 
The campaign runs from 22 November 2021 and closes on 31 January 2022. Winners will be announced by 28 February 2022.
 
#CreateNext

Adele Tells Apple Music About Her New Album called “30”

Credit: Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1

I’m a huge Adele fan, and eagerly awaited her new album called ’30’. She always comes across as so real in her interviews, like she’s talking to a friend, and one really gets to understand where she’s coming from and the reason for her lyrics.

Adele joined Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1 to unpack her highly anticipated fourth studio album ’30’. The global superstar tells Apple Music about the emotional journey that lead to the album’s release, losing and regaining her connection with her own music, the anger she experienced after leaving her marriage, how making ’30’ helped her and why she thinks it can help others. She also discusses the challenges of being single and dating, not enjoying celebrity, her message for other artists, parenting through divorce, Amy Winehouse, and more. 

Watch the interview at the bottom of this post.

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