It’s that time again when we get in sync with one of your favourite SACHH artists. Today we catch up with 25 years old Christian rapper, songwriter, and recording artist Tanaka Chiwandire known to us as JustSolidMuzik. He shares with us the heart behind his music, reflects on the highs and lows from his 8 years in SA CHH and we tackle the topic of SA CHH in the African context.
The artist recently celebrated his 25th birthday under lockdown but he shared that even during lockdown he is still doing the finishing touches to his coming debut album titled I Can Explain. He says to expect more of an African feel, growth, truth that might make some uncomfortable, unity from those who don’t share the same walks of life, and also really going into the world as the bible says “Go ye therefore”; finding out why people don’t come to church and a whole lot more topics. Solid describes his musical style as a mix of Hip hop, afro-fusion, RnB, and soul. He shares that his musical influences include Andy Mineo, Lux Kent, Lilly Million, and Blaque Nubon. JustSolidMuzik is a play on being fair in judgment and that Christ the solid rock is “in me and I am the Christ people see.” In a “behind the scenes” interview three years ago he shares that in other words, he is a Hope dealer.
The South African based Christian Hip Hop artist credits his performance at Teens Take Over in Christ Embassy, Kempton Park to be his best performance thus far because the audience had the same energy I was giving on stage. It is no wonder since his recipe for a live performance is the “Band, (my band must be on point), good energy, freedom, and fun.” Solid aspires to fill up Coachella and Madison Square, amongst other aspirations he would like to collaborate with Santu Blanko, 2tsy Mafia, Lux Kent, and Martin PK. In the 8 years, Tanaka has released over 50 tracks most of which are available on his SoundCloud account.
Apart from making music JustSolidMuzik loves listening to music, watching movies, and attending or ministering to youngsters at church. On his playlist, you will probably find Richy Gatonye, Courtney Antipas, Lilly Million, Blaque Nubon, Lux Kent, and King Dee. He suggested that we be on the lookout for Mercy, Akaz, Jenius, the Theosapians, TK, Richy Gatonye… “People making music not only for the choir… but that people can listen to in the club.”
I don’t think we have CHH hits yet, but a hit starts with the beat; the beat has to captivate people… your chorus has to be catchy… creativity on musical placement so that it’s not just repetitive.JustSolidMuzik
It is Africa month and it is important for us to ask ourselves where do we fit in as the SACHH nation in the African context, we discussed this with Tanaka and he shared that SA CHH isn’t getting much exposure in Africa, “the reason being we’re not collaborative, we don’t work together, and that’s sad. We should be the Body of Christ but we’re not the Body. As a result, we are divided. I think at some point we want to be pioneers so that we can say ‘I first one to bring Christian hip hop to my side’, ‘I was the first to play on Yfm’ or ‘the first one to be on Metro FM’. So we have a whole lot of individuals that are striving towards a common goal but not together and it’s more like we’re in competition with one another as a result of that we are not in unity. As the bible says people who are in unity achieve more than people who are not. That’s where our issue is.” He furthermore commented that although we are learning and working on being influenced by Africa SA CHH is influences are mostly American, duly to the fact that “we grew up listening to Lecrae, Cross movement, 116 clique, Da truth. Everyone thought let’s do it like the 116 crew, so we felt we had to adapt to American Style instead of owning our creativity.” Just Solid credits the pioneering that got SACHH where it is now to Calvin (who isn’t a Chh artist anymore and is now based in Zim) he contributed a lot he even had an influence my music as well while growing up, he broke boundaries, he would even host shows in the craziest place, he would go to churches that didn’t even know about Christian Hip Hop and literally force it down their throats until they listened to it… also, a person I believe who has been very influential is Blaque Nubon we have to give him credit, and for giving us opportunities: Sir Harry Fresh; he isn’t an artist but runs a management company, he opened up the game by bringing international artists and we would see these places fill up, and be like if they can fill up places like this and they’re not worldly so we can do it as well.”
JustSolidMuzik is not just a SA CHH artist but a diehard fan of the industry he expressed some of the challenges he faces as a SA CHH artist are, “Acceptance; Lecrae says ‘if you live for people’s acceptance you will die from people’s rejection,’ support; I actually do more gigs in clubs than I do in churches, it’s like there is more love outside the body of Christ than there is in the body of Christ.”
The Zimbabwean born new father of son Uyapa is willing to go hard for this, the interview challenged us to unite our efforts as we are truly the Body of Christ, let all that we do authentic, transparent and true to the SA CHH cause. Follow @JustSolidMuzik on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and subscribe to his YouTube Channel to keep up with his latest movements. He encourages fellow SA CHH artists to “remember who and what we’re doing it for. Do music for people but don’t idolize, and remember the mission; the Great Commission. Don’t be afraid to explore; don’t be afraid to go wherever the Holy Spirit will lead you to even if it is a club.”
SACHH raises the flag and raises the bars.