Every Wednesday we cover one of your favourite SACHH artist and this week we zone in into cat that has been at it for almost 10 years and counting; Incense.
Born in Soweto and raised in Pakamisa, King Williams Town in the Eastern Cape, Incense is counted among the veterans of SACHH. He has been in the SA CHH community since 2008 and has released 1 mixtape (Dedications), 2 albums, (Classified, and the Process), 2 EPs (Songs for the Winter and Skhaftin), and 8 singles (Feminine Cries, The Process, Anonymous, Voicenote, Comatose, Breaking Bread, Peace, People You May Know). He describes his style to be “quintessentially relatable content, rooted in the scriptures and influenced by my journey as a black man navigating Democratic South Africa. With musical influences ranging from jazz, boom-bap, pop, trap to UK drill.” His music has seen him topping music store charts and nominated for awards including the Independent National Gospel Music Awards (INGOMA) and the South African Crown Gospel Awards to name a few. “Generally what defines a hit song is high rotation playlisting, mainstream radio generally dictates that regardless of content, and CHH does not enjoy mainstream radio play in South Africa; so in context, everybody subjectively decides what song is a hit to them,” pointed out Incense.
He shared the names that come to mind when it comes to people that were instrumental in pioneering SACHH to where it is now is CJay and Last Days Fam, and with the noteworthy Take Take Movement we recognise that Incense was a pioneer as well. His definition of SA CHH is South Africans telling their authentically South African stories, with the cross being central to the narrative; something he says he is still learning to do. “It’s safe to say it chose me since the days we would do cyphers with my homies back in 2008 to finally releasing a debut rap album in 2013,” shared Incense, who has had local multicity tours and feature on the local television shows like the Morning Expresso on SABC 3.He remarked that his most memorable live performance was the East London leg of The Process Tour in 2018, “we did a 45 minute set with my band that night and the show was almost a sold-out affair,” he added. Energy, stage presence and great sound are three elements Incense says must be present in order to have a good live performance.
South Africans telling their authentically South African stories, with the cross being central to the narrativeIncense
Incense is a sports fanatic, shoe spends his spare time watching live sports, spending time with his girlfriend and her family, hanging out with good friends and reading now and then. He is also a programs manager at Link FM a radio station he also once was a radio presenter at years back. Local CHH cats you would find on his playlist are Bonafide, Zeal, Living Legacy Movement, Allan P, Andoni, Nick Papas and most recently Leo Rainers. He has worked with Bonafide and would love to work with him again and also Landmarq is a dream collaboration for him, not forgetting working with gospel producer Nqubeko Mbatha. Incense suggested we be on the lookout for Andoni.
His music is influences are a little bit of The Roots, Eminem, Nas, Common and Jay Z. This year he has released 2 EP’s and 3 singles and says that he has something in the pipeline, “so I am due one more single in 2020, a special record for the summer, let me say it will take you back to where it all began for me, both sonically and lyrically. The sound is nothing like you have heard from me before. Next year I release what will probably be my last album titled HONEST, I have already submitted it for mixing. It’s an HONEST body of work through and through, in light of my failures, victories, aspirations and convictions. It has been an amazing 10 years doing this and I am at peace with my contribution,” shared Incense to our surprise. We’re opening that he will rethink his retirement and continue to impact the masses for God’s glory. He encourages SA CHH artists to “constantly refine your intentions, remembering what you are doing this for will always centre you and never get caught up in the hype.”
His apple music account recently reached 3k plays and he shared his gratitude to all who have been supporting his music, you can follow him on social media platforms @IncenseSA and Incense on all digital music platforms. We salute him for his continuous contribution to SACHH and the Kingdom of God at large.
SACHH raises the flag and raises the bars.