LOCAL is lekker!
The old Boer adage truly rings true when it comes to local fusion artiste Lekaka Brendan aka Leka.
Signed to Harambee Global Records, Leka fuses cultural music with trap to come up with a new sound he refers to as mangae or trap-ngae.
Trap-ngae may sound like a mouthful but the sound itself is easy on the ear laced with easy-flowing rap derived from Sesotho folklore. It has strong elements of traditional music and modern rap, one of the hallmarks of the Seapoint based Harambee.
Leka recently released a new single titled Jonna Wee which is already getting decent attention from different local radio stations. The track seems to be taking the same success trajectory as that of his 2020 releases; Brown Sugar, Nthati and Lekeke which were all recorded live.
With the new track, Leka brings in a whole new dimension of local music.
Apart from being a rapper he also plays the keyboard and piano. He has backed different artistes like Selimo Thabane, Mookho Moqhali, Leomile, Putseletso Seema and Ntate Mantša among others.
“I love playing all types of genres and I don’t mind what the artiste’s background is — as long as it is a local artiste,” Leka told the Weekender this week.
“I also love exploring and experimenting with other African genres.”
The 27-year-old musician said for his solo career he has settled for rap and ensures that he is backed by local artistes to deliver specific messages.
“I’m greatly inspired by rap and jazz music as well as cultural Basotho sounds. I rap in English and Sesotho and I also arrange the musical background as opposed to pre-recorded beats,” he says.
Leka said he joined Harambee after realising that the record label had a common drive with him, to discover new talent and thrusting it into the limelight.
“Harambee is one of the greatest platforms to showcase not only my music but the entire nation’s. It is indeed fulfilling to be part of such a stable.”
Born on 4 November 1993 in Maseru, Leka said although he started playing the piano just over 10 years ago in church, he has always been inclined to rap music.
“I started playing the piano at 15 in church but I was already a rapper. Soon afterwards, I took a breather from rapping and focused on the piano, music arrangement and production.”
Leka said his future plans include working with more local artistes to enrich is with Basotho culture “for the next generation to feed on, listen to and learn from”.
Harambee Global Records chairperson and chief executive officer Masitise Seleso said his company has in the past few years invested millions into acquiring a space and equipment to build its state-of-the art recording studio which is now nearing completion. If all goes according to plan, the studio will be functional by the end of next month.
The new studio will have among others, a recording booth and an auditorium that can accommodate a whole choir or orchestra during recordings and a fully-equipped audio-visual studio with all accessories that can be hired for external use. It also has an artiste’s management and administration wing.
“We have already imported cameras, mixing desks, instruments, sound and light equipment for in-house and outdoor use. The aim is to put Lesotho’s music on the world map,” Seleso said.