Amapiano: The Three Headed Dragon
Written by Cava De Kulca on 13th November 2020
The rise of Amapiano is one you could compare with that of Gqom. It came from the streets, shot up into the mainstream and the round the world. Amapiano started really gaining popularity in mid to late 2018. In that year acts such as Kabza De Small, Mfr Souls and Vigro Deep were some of the guys pioneering and pushing the genre forward. But in 2019 that’s when it really started taking off as more and more people started to take notice of this new sound which was slower than the usual house tracks started taking over the streets. The genre has never looked back since. There are 3 distinct sounds or categories you might say. Soulful/Jazz piano, Commercial Amapiano and my favourite Drum and Bass piano.
The Soulful and jazz Amapiano is made for easy listening the type of music you listen to when you are one a road trip or studying. This is undoubtably one of Kabza De Small signature sound. Tracks such as Ndofaya and Need You Tonight are brilliant examples of this. There has been an emergence of the soulful vibe with artist such as Mfr Souls and Gaba Canal get an honourable mention.
The commercial has really helped raise the profile of the genre. The commercial tracks have made Amapiano very radio friendly. the songs are very long and have long build ups but with good reason because the progression engages the listener. The biggest commercial Amapiano tracks are still making big round and more for the culture. Tracks such as Kokota, Jobe, Amanikiniki, Tikikoloshi and many more are bringing in recognition for the genre and undoubtedly brought in the money.
Drum and bass Amapiano is the best in my humble opinion it’s the type that makes you make a stank face. The heavy bass and explosive percussion are sure to get you on the dance floor. This is the sound of the street and the sound of the hood. This is what bangs at the parties and the clubs. Vigro Deep is the pioneer of the sound. This has spawned out acts like Caltonic Sa, Unlimited Soul, the Ubunutu brothers and Sje Konk. This is undoubtedly the biggest and best era of music that is going to coming out.