Happy music for a happy occasion is what visitors to the FIFA Fan Fest™ in Port Elizabeth can expect when well-known rapper Linda “Pro” Mkhize takes to the stage on Thursday evening.
But this hasn’t always been the case for Mkhize, who says his music is inspired by personal experiences, “because you sing about what you see”. “And, let’s be honest, growing up in Soweto I saw a lot of things that were not perfect.”
The 28-year-old from Johannesburg says his music – which he describes as kasi (township) rap – is biographical in nature, as it documents his life from those early, poverty-stricken years to one of promise.
“When I write, I talk about everything – my experiences and my feelings. I keep it real; audiences identify with that.”
He says he has learnt that life will always have its ups and downs, “like a game of Snakes and Ladders” – which is also the title of his latest album.
“Each time you think you’ve hit the jackpot, there’s a snake to swallow you and bring you back to earth. That’s why it’s so important to focus on the positives in your life.”
Taking a leaf out of his own book, Mkhize says he now writes, and sings, about the good things that he is witnessing around him.
Snakes and Ladders includes the track “Sekele”, which is a metaphor for the beautiful game. “I perform it wherever I go and will do so in PE as well.”
The show, he promises, is not about “hectic instrumentation”. “My music is all about the words and about getting the audience involved. The vibe must be right.”
According to Mkhize – who was nicknamed the Pro Kid at school after his talent for penning down lyrics and poems – he tends not to plan his shows in advance.
“Whatever I feel on stage, dictates my performance. It’s about finding your inner voice and keeping it real.”
He is charged up for his show at St George’s Park, which is scheduled for 7pm, just before the live broadcast of the France/Mexico match.
“As soon as I get there, it’s going to be on. We’re going to jam and it’s going to be happy music for a happy occasion.”
Entry to the Fan Park, which is open from 11am to 11pm, is free.
CAPTION: Linda “Pro” Mkhize will treat visitors to his signature kasi rap at the FIFA Fan Fest™ in Port Elizabeth on Thursday evening.
Full Stop Communications
On behalf of:
FIFA Fan Fest™