Beyond the Sounds of Darkie Fiction

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Authentically South African music duo Darkie Fiction came to be in 2017 by rapper, Katt Daddy and songstress, Yoza Mnyanda. We spoke to the two about all things music as they hit another milestone as part of RedBull’s Beyond The Sound series with their episode airing on Channel O (DSTV 320), February 14 at 21:00.

Darkie Fiction’s music draws inspiration from kwaito, afro-funk, neo-soul and hip hop, paying homage to South African music of yesteryear.

“We are called alternative because it’s not the norm but our music is completely South African. No matter where you are from, you can always identify that it’s Darkie Fiction because we are singing in our mother tongue (is’Xhosa) and the sound is nostalgic, has reminants of old South African kwaito music, music that our parents listened to and was playing around us when we were growing up,” they say.

“It’s what came naturally to us, Kwaito can be translated in so many different ways but it has a distinctive sound that shouts “South Africa!” We also feel that as musicians in these times, we have a responsibility to our country to celebrate who we are and our identity, to tell other South Africans to be proud of who they are and to love their South Africanness,” they add.

Photo: Pixel Kollective

The new age kwaito duo said they are excited for people to see their episode of Beyond The Sound and people can expect a deeper look into their colourful journey to greatness.

“We’re excited and grateful for the opportunity and platform. People can expect energy and a high voltage performance,” they say.

“When coming into the industry, no one owes you anything – you should always affirm yourself by knowing  your worth and how much you are worth. Always listen to your intuition. Get it done yourself! Upcoming artists should be recognized just like well-known artists. After the Design Indaba incident, we don’t get as much shit as we used to, because they know that we are not afraid to speak out. Always be good to people, work well with them and God will shine favour upon you (but don’t let anyone make you feel small- DON’T TAKE KAK FROM ANYBODY), ” they say reflecting upon their  learnings along the way.

“The whole journey has been a highlight. To release something new into the universe in the hopes of it having a positive impact on people it is exposed to and getting it right is an amazing feeling. There were times of doubt in the beginning, mostly from people around us, doubting that we would get anywhere with this dream of creating a music duo that would stand apart from everything else in the industry and stand amongst the biggest names in the industry but we continue to prove them wrong while holding our own. Another highlight is performing and having people know our lyrics/ singing our songs back to us- that is the best feeling,” they say proudly and humbled.

Photo: Pixel Kollective

The duo say they have a few exciting collaborations lined up for the year imclusing a song called “Standat”  which came out early this month. “It is a collab with Dj Sliqe and we are also working on a project as a follow up to Sobabini. Expect big singles and beautiful music videos,” they add.

“Every single one of our songs has a message of positivity, we share our own experiences of overcoming self-doubt and celebrating ourselves. The way we relay the messages are in a family friendly way (no swearing) and also in a language that is our own so that before it goes anywhere else, it is heard by our own first, that is something that is really important to us; making music that our own people can relate to first, before anyone else,” they say.

These two seem to be having a winning formula when it comes to their sound, image and trajectory to success. So, how do they make it work as a duo and lovers?

“It’s an amazing thing to work with your partner, the things that work, work incredibly well and those that don’t can be very challenging but we always find a way around the obstacles and once we get around them, we learn a lot from the experience and we find that it only makes us stronger. We’ve also learned that saying exactly what you think and feel in the moment, avoids conflict in the future so we’re very transparent and open with one another,” they say.

Photo: Pixel Kollective

  • FUN FACT: “The name Darkie Fiction was initially a mistake, we were working with Jakinda (one half of Qho-storyteller duo Stiff Pap), who said they sounded like Documentary fiction, and Katt heard Darkie Fiction instead and then when came time to come up with a name, we just said why not Darkie Fictiono and it stuck,” the duo explains the history of how their name came to be.