KZN rap battle “Hood vs Hood” Season 3 loading

I recently had a 5-question interview with the talented rapper from KZN, Clara-T. During the interview, she mentioned that KZN is still focused on rap competitions and the roots of hip-hop, which involve battles. As we are based in Johannesburg, we asked if she could connect us with one of the organizers to discuss “HOOD TO HOOD,” a KZN-based hip-hop competition. She reached out to the founder of the movement, Zakwe, as she continued to facilitate the conversation and be our on-the-ground correspondent for the day in KZN. For those who don’t know, battle rap is a type of rapping performed between two or more performers that involves boasts, insults, wordplay, and disses. Battle rap is often performed spontaneously in live battles known as rap battles, where participants compete on the same stage to see who has the better verses. It’s great to see Zakwe and his team keeping the battle rap culture alive, especially with a prize at stake. here is the conversation between Clara-T and Zakwe.

What is Hood VS Hood and when was it established?

Hood vs Hood was established in 2021 by Zakwe. Think of a soccer tournament like Nedbank cup – it’s a KZN based Hip Hop competition, that consists of 16 hoods eg. Kwa Mashu, Umlazi, PMB, Stanger, Empangeni etc. each team has 10 emcees that battle on the day, eg.  ‘Inanda vs Kwa Mashu’, each team has 10 rappers to represent their hood, chosen by a team captain/coach who would have already scouted his/her team from emcees around his/her hood. The battle song performance based, 2 songs per emcees, the judges judge who wins the round through these categories – ‘Lyrics, Performance & Song’, if the Kwa Mashu emcees gets the highest points, it’s 1 point for Kwa Mashu. That occurs until all ten emcees per team perform, and then ultimately the team with the higher score in the ten rounds wins the game, they’ll be through to the next round. From last 16, quarterfinals, semis and eventually the final, which takes place in December every year, indicating end of season. The winning team walks away with R40 000 and a sheep.

Why was the event created?

After many years passing by with KZN not witnessing any great hip hop artist through Hip Hop to represent us in SA, Zakwe realised that we should start building from the ground up – ‘Hood vs Hood’ was born via the company ‘Rap iFact’. It’s a movement to uplift unknown KZN emcees to get to know each other and find new talent, promote social cohesion, try remove them from crime and drug abuse (already have successful cases), assist them with marketing, social media, and radio interviews, and for some to be signed and release music and mainly to keep the culture alive.


Where does the event take place?

It takes place on chosen Sundays throughout the year in Durban at ‘The Bat Centre’.

Which artists have previously participated in the battles?

We have had Lordscript, Akalicious, Mnqobi Yazo, Skye Wanda, Skhindi, Musiholiq, OB Magik etc participate. With the likes of Big Zulu, Blaxkie, Touchline, Beast, Loki, DreamTeam, Duncan and many others rocking our stage during a match. In the past years we have also invited guests judges like Dr. Sipho Sithole, Stogie T, Kwesta, Zuluboy and most recently Slikour, Touchline and Rashid Kay. We work closely with Ukhozi FM, Gagasi FM and local radio stations for interviews, especially on their Hip Hop shows.

When is the first battle taking place and which Hoods are set to battle?

Next week Sunday – 26 May 2024 and it will be – NEWCASTLE vs KWA MASHU (title holders)

Find the link below of our fast-growing Facebook page for video clips and photos:


Scroll to Top

Join the Hype fam and sign-up today

Newsletters • competitions • events