The 25-year-old singer and songwriter Thabiso Morake, from Sasolburg in the Free State, has been crowned the latest winner for the first season of the Hunter’s X Jacquel Culture House (JCH) nationwide Talent Search.
Thabiso’s sound is a blend of Trap, Neo Soul, and RnB with hints of jazz elements. After only two years of crafting his art, he has already co-signed and worked with artists such as Prince Kaybee, Bantu, Tyler ICU, Mikhale Jones, and The Big Hash, to name a few.
The Hunter’s X Jacquel Culture House is a partnership between multi-award-winning African Pop Maverick – TRESOR, and Hunter’s. In this way, Africa’s most refreshing cider aims to give young musicians access to the national music industry. The collab also seeks to be an empowerment platform providing support and career development through ongoing mentorship and sharing of information about the industry. #RefreshingtheRules of the music industry.
“I started making music in 2020 with a make-shift studio setup comprising of the production software Fruity Loops, an earpiece, and the microphone on that earpiece. I posted videos of my work on Instagram, so a friend from the neighbourhood lent me a USB microphone. By posting my videos on SoundCloud and Instagram my talent was acknowledged, and it gave me the opportunity to work with some of the biggest names in the industry,” said Morake. “At first, I just made music as a hobby. As time passed, I realised that out of everything I could do, I was adept at making music. I grew up listening to music, but I didn’t pay much attention to it. Growing up in Botshabelo, I was always with my cousins, and they always listened to music. It was only much later that I actually dived into it and used it as a form of self-expression. My little ‘diary’ was all I did when the nationwide lockdown happened.”
The Hunter’s X Jacquel Culture House is an empowerment platform for upcoming artists and has given emerging musicians access to fundamental tools, resources and mentorship opportunities from some of the country’s biggest artists, such as Tresor himself. Even for musicians who have already started their journey in the industry, having someone like TRESOR take you under his wing is invaluable.
With this collaboration, Hunter’s aims to enable easy access and support to young musicians who find it challenging to enter the music industry due to lack of resources, assistance or education. It opened doors, and during the competition, Morake met many musicians and creatives to collaborate with after and showcased his skillset with two of his favourite musicians on a national platform.
“Right now, the biggest roadblock I am facing is funding. I am learning how to make my talent profitable. I get afforded writing opportunities to grow my resume and I am always looking for other opportunities, whether short term or long term,” added Morake. “Matters of the heart inspire my sound and the music I make – things people can easily relate to. Sha Sha was my mentor during the competition, and I also received recording equipment – these have been my best highlights to date. I hope to continue to grow beyond what I am right now, hoping to work with more artists and creatives and do more with my talent as opportunities arise.”
Follow Hunter’s and Jacquel Culture House’s social media platforms for more information and announcements around this #RefreshTheRules initiative.
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