By Edwin Nhukarume
DJ Fantan of the Chillspot Records has defended the explicit lyrics from some artistes at his recording stable.
This comes after some of the artistes under his recording label such as Boss Pumacol, Uncle Epatan and X-Faya performed explicit freestyles with some unprintable words that praised marijuana, violence and sex.
Bazooker, who records with Chillspot, was among the artistes on that freestyle medley but his lyrics were clean.
The video of the freestyle went viral on social media.
Fantan said dancehall is a different music genre which talks about real issues that happen in the society.
“Dancehall lyrics are different from any other genre.
“You sing what is happening on the streets and the society, this is what makes dancehall different from sungura or gospel.
“If people know dancehall is not gospel maybe they will understand where we are coming from,” said Fantan.
Fantan said these dirty songs have a category in the Zim dancehall in the name of club songs.
“That is why in Zim dancehall awards we have a category called club songs.
“This is a category where you people call it dirty songs, but these songs reflects the truth of what is happening in the streets.
“Drugs are being abused in the streets, prostitution is happening in the streets and the youths are also indulging in sexual activities, its reality.
“These ganja lyrics and p***y songs did not start with these young artistes, even Winky D back in the days he did songs like Mzii and Mabhebhi hobho, Seh Calaz has a song Ndakarohwa nemuzii, Soul Jah Love has Gumkum, Killer T has a song with the lines ndikamuona achifamba yangu inomi** and Sniper Storm has also these types of songs,” he told H-Metro.
Fantan has, however, been accused of sabotaging some artistes and promoting one artiste to be popular, but he has refuted the allegations.
“It is not true that we push a certain artiste to be at the top.
“These are blatant lies, most artistes that rise or that have already risen mostly came through Chillspot.
“These artistes that you know right now that are popular in the streets such as Bazooker, Pumacol, Enzo, Uncle Epatan, Hwinza, Mad Viper and others, are all from Chillspot and we push them.
“Among those artistes, it is the choice of the fans who choose their best artiste or which artiste to follow,” he said.
“We produce a riddim with 50 or 20 songs with different artistes and the music listeners choose their best song to follow out of those plenty songs.
“I am not the one who forces fans to listen to Enzo or Bazooker or a certain artiste,” he added.
Fantan said he is looking forward to hold the biggest gig ever at the giant National Sports Stadium that is set to merge Zim dancehall and hip hop.
“We do have plans to make a gig that unites most of the Zim dancehall artistes.
“If you take a look sometime in the past, we produced a riddim called One Clan and we launched it with the idea to unite Zim dancehall.
“The upcoming gig we are going to make it big, we are likely to hold it at the National Sports Stadium because we want to attract most of the youths in Zimbabwe and more corporates.
“We will also be fusing the gig with the hip hop artistes as you can see that these days we are working with some hip hop artistes like Ti Gonzi, and the gig is likely to be held this year or early next year,” said Fantan.
Fantan has bemoaned lack of professionalism in the local music industry as music royalties are not being taken seriously.
“About the music rights, it is supposed to be that the studio gets 50 percent and the artiste also gets the same percentage, and if the artiste has a songwriter and a producer they should all share the royalties.
“But as it is now in Zimbabwe, we do not have a proper music industry so these procedures are not followed.
“Nobody gets royalties and there is nowhere we get these royalties, but we wish if we could get royalties and split them evenly” he said.
Fantan claims that Chillspot Records has become a place that is helping struggling youths in the community.
“In the ghetto, we have most of the children who are orphans, but because Chillspot is popular some of them come there and we help them.
“Some of them come without even a birth certificate and some do not even know where their parents are.
“We have helped some of the artistes to attain important life documents such as birth certificates, passports and Visas.
“We help some of them from the start, we scout talent and nurture them until they become superstars,” said Fantan.
He also said that Chillspot is offering transport for the impoverished youths that come to record at their studio.
“Some of them come without even money to record but we help them.
“We are doing a lot to some we even give money for transport as they walk long distances from their homes like Budiriro, Waterfalls and other places just to come and record.”
Despite Chillspot being the popular studio at the moment, Fantan said they are facing challenges.
“We have a lot of challenges.
“Youths are recording music but there is nowhere we can sell our music.
“You find out our music ends up being sold online by some certain individuals in the UK.
“In the streets we can’t stop piracy and if you can’t beat them just join them, so sometimes when we produce our music we put in the streets on our own,” he said.
“Another challenge is, what gives us money are shows, but we can’t do shows on our own and we have to wait to be booked by the promoter.
“These days because of the economy the promoters are now few.
“So sometimes we have to host shows on our own, but we are still rising and the money to hire some of the venues is too expensive for us.
“The likes of HICC, Glamis Arena, City Sports Centre and Netball Complex have all hiked their charges and this is a big challenge for us,” he added. H-Metro