One of those artists who came onto the scene and got it buzzing, iFani is as intriguingly unique as his sound. Although he’s been hard at work for years, it’s because of moves like ‘Ewe’, ‘See Live’ and ‘Shake’ that he recently scooped a record deal with Sony and dropped his debut album a few weeks ago, which is available on iTunes. We got the rapper to take time off his busy schedule to chat to HYPE:
HYPE: Tell us more about your debut…
It’s titled “I believes in me” [1st Quadrant]. This means it’s album 1 of 4. My story in music will be told over 4 albums. After that I’m done. I worked with Blaksuga; Bongani Fassie, 37MPH and my all time favorite St. Bosseratti (producer of ‘ewe’ amongst many).
Will this album be the definition of Ifani?
Like I said it tells a 1/4 of my story. You will need all 4 albums to get a complete picture. This album gives you the foundation of who and what I’m about.
How stressful (or not) was it working on the album from inception?
The actual music is fun. The politics around it is stressful. I can’t elaborate here because relationships may be ruined. But hey…here I am and the album is ready which means I won most of the political battles I found myself in. Let’s hope next year with next album will be easier.
What subject matters can we expect from the album?
It’s my chopped & screwed view of life and my journey through it. So you’ll hear what life is and has been to me and how it has shaped me into the person I am today. If people like how I turned out or if they are curious and/or intrigued by how I turned then my album is the one to buy. And I do not compromise fun and entertainment in what I do so get ready to dance and laugh.
Are there collabos that will shock us, that you think will be unexpected?
Most definitely. The track I did with Bongani Fassie is a shocker and will get rappers talking and everyone else dancing.
Have things changed drastically since you joined Sony or was it a gradual thing?
My signing to Sony added nothing to my music. It taught me a lot of lessons and has, still is, shaped my career as an artist. But my music and hustle is still just me.
Has Sony finally “given you the check”? (I might have misunderstood that line on Shake)
Ewe ewe ewe [smiles]
After hearing your Tswana on “Shake” how fluent are you in the language?
I don’t know, average? Or just below average? I honestly don’t know. I understand it and speak it sometimes with whatever accent pops up. It’s difficult to write it though ‘cause you have to break the words.
Have you decided on your next single yet?
Yes of course and I’m currently writing a treatment for its music video. After that I’ll get a company to shoot n edit it. But its not coming out soon though. For now, we bump and promote the album.
What’s your last message to hip hop supporters, to your fans?
You have the power to transform this industry. Every local CD you buy is like a vote for freedom. Support your own and your own will support you ‘cause honestly Lil Wayne doesn’t even care to know the town or kasi you live in. Artists should have enough money to build schools, but hip hop fans today would rather fund overseas artists who are already rich. Think about what you’re doing.