How These 5 Artists Won 2021 – DStvMVCA.. Big Zulu, Hle, Makhadzi, Scorpion Kings and Zakes Bantwini owned the charts, the streams and dancefloors countrywide throughout 2022.
Due to his meteoric rise and explosive chart success in 2021, a large chunk of the population may have believed that Big Zulu was a newcomer. But while the KZN native delivered a slew of blockbuster hits that came to dominate the local Hip Hop landscape for two successive summers, he’s no freshman on the scene. The ‘Imali Eningi’ hitmaker released his debut album ‘Ushun Wenkabi’ in 2018. This happened three years after he had inked a record deal with Universal Music.
His sophomore project Ungqongqoshe Wongqongoshe followed in 2019, leading up to his most considerable encounter with leading the pack on Ichwane Lenyoka (2021). The album spawned such hits as ‘Imali Eningi’, ‘Inhlupheko‘ and ‘Umuzi eSandton.’ The latter propelled Big Zulu to the top of the ranks.
Hle’s light shone brightly as the power of her vocals resonated with millions during her tenure as a member of the legendary gospel choir group, Joyous Celebration. Like a number of it’s alum, she went on to have a remarkable breakthrough as a solo artist. The arrival of her critically lauded live album ‘Your Kingdom on Earth’ marked a triumphant entry into the scene, as it spawned a number of massive hits like ‘Nguwe’ (Live), Ungofanelwe (Live), and amongst others, ‘You Are’ (Live).
In 2020, Hle’s debut solo single ‘Dwala’ shot to #1 on iTunes upon its release, and proceeded to make waves in the months that followed. Her success opened new doors for the 31-year-old powerhouse, who later became a presenter on Adlib on One Gospel, which airs on DStv Channel 331.
She is not being touted as the best live performer in the country for no reason. Makhadzi’s electrifying performance has been the talk of the town for a while now, which is why she shook the social media trends when she performed at the DStvMVCAs back in 2020. The power of her dynamite energy on stage, along with her blockbuster catalogue of summer street anthems and heartfelt odes, has helped her to become one of the most sought-after music acts in the business.
Such bangers as ‘Ghanama’, ‘Matorokisi’ and amongst others ‘Murahu’, have cultivated a discography that keeps the Limpopo native as a mainstay as one of the most streamed artists in the business. And when’s she’s not releasing fire bops, she’s making headlines for her shows.
The Scorpion Kings
For several years now, not a single summer has gone by without Kabza De Small and DJ Maphorisa delivering a number of hits that compete for that ‘song of the year’ title. 2021 was no different, as amapiano’s most formidable force gave us ‘Asibe Happy’ and ‘Abalele’. Both songs, featuring Ami Faku’s sun-drenched vocals, would go on to dominate charts, streaming platforms, Tik Tok and a dancefloor near you.
What’s more, both producers have credits on some of the biggest songs. When they aren’t the main acts, they are still the dab-hands behind your favourite record.
2021 became the year of Zakes Bantwini’s splashy return into the mainstream frame. Although Bantwini is already a household name, he is also known for shunning the spotlight in between records. So the arrival of his megahit ‘Osama’, arguably his biggest hit to date, was a massive moment in the South African pop culture landscape.
The single’s commercial success was quickly followed by the release of his album ‘iMali’, the Karyendasoul scorcher with undeniable replay value. Zakes Batnwini released his studio album Ghetto King, which spawned a number of hits, including ‘Amanga’ with Nana Atta.