MTN Bushfire 2017: More Performers Announced

Posted on: Thursday, April 06, 2017

MTN Bushfire, taking place in Swaziland from May 26th – 28th 2017, is once again living up to its reputation as Africa’s largest and most inclusive world music festival.

Named Africa’s Top Festival by the BBC and by CNN as one of the 7 African must-attend festivals, MTN Bushfire is thrilled to announce a range of incredibly talented and loved artists from across African and the world – all of whom will perform on the MTN Bushfire main stage.

The MTN Bushfire 2017 line-up is arguably the most exciting, dynamic and global list to date – including African legend Hugh Masekela, South African global exports GoodLuck, Kwesta, Reason and Matthew Mole, pan-African stars such as Jah Prayzah, Faada Freddy, Chico Antonio, Femi Koya, and Jojo Abot, along with a host of acts close to home and from across the globe.

These new announcements are in addition to the already announced acts that include South African Kwaito superstars TKZee, Congolese performer Baloji, the Taureg rebel Bombino, the Belgian / South African newcomer Petite Noir and Swazi afro-soul singer Sands.

More artists and a full festival programme will be announced soon. For all the latest updates and ticket information visit

Hugh Masekela (South Africa)
South African legend, global icon, human rights activist and one of the world’s greatest musicians – Hugh Masekela needs no introduction to most audiences. Going into his 6th decade of performance and with 44 albums under his belt, this living legend still packs a punch with his riveting live performances.

Faada Freddy (Senegal/ France)
Faada Freddy is a well-loved rapper turned gospel artist whose latest album, Gospel Journey, was recorded using only vocals and body percussion. But far from being experimental, the result is accessible, containing pop hymns with catchy melodies that give an irresistible urge to smile, sing or even dance. This Senegalese singer with an iconoclastic look (dread locks, hat, knot cap and cane), is also endowed with an unusual voice worthy of the Soulmen of the 1960s and 70s.

Jah Prayzah (Zimbabwe)
Jah Prazah is Zimbabwe’s biggest musical export in decades, enthralling tens of thousands of fans across Africa with his reggae infused African style. He is popularly referred to by fans and media as “Musoja”, the Shona word for “the soldier”, a name he earned mostly because of his signature band uniform of military regalia. His concerts look like military rallies with his devoted fans donning the same military look in honour of their musical hero. Make sure to pack your camos to be part of the Jah Prayzah experience.

GoodLuck (South Africa)
Goodluck have taken their infectious live dance music around the world and back a number of times over the past few years.  The trio’s music is an irresistible blend of electronica, pop and subtle influences of jazz. GoodLuck creates a sound that is thoroughly their own and they have been taking this sound to audiences across Europe, Africa and the UK over the past 3 years. GoodLuck have shared stages with Groove Armada, Bassment Jaxx, The Petshop Boys, Bakermat, Goldfish and Paul Oakenfold to name a few. In September 2015 GoodLuck was selected to open for Pharrell Williams, as a part of his world tour, to rave reviews. GoodLuck has performed at sold-out concerts in Amsterdam, Berlin and London.

Kwesta (South Africa)
Over the last 10 years Kwesta has taken Africa by storm. In early 2010 Kwesta was selected to be a Brand SA ambassador performing as the headline act at their nationwide roadshow tour in the run-up to the FIFA World Cup. He also collaborated with African greats like 2-Face, Jozi & others on MTN's Everywhere You Go anthem which featured, Destiny's Child’s Kelly Rowland (USA). This culminated in a performance at the 2010 FIFA World Cup closing ceremony which was viewed by 500million people worldwide

Matthew Mole (South Africa)
Matthew Mole has become one of South Africa’s most respected singer-songwriters just within the past few years. His unique and honest style propelled him to early success via  the online release of his first songs in 2011. In 2013 he became the first South African artist to enter the itunes chart at number one with his debut album, The Home We  Built. He has followed up with a number of top charting radio hits.

JoJo Abot (Ghana)
Jojo Abot is a Ghanaian artist who expresses herself through music, film/photography, literature and performance art. Her exploration into self and identity has taken on a journey around the world, seeing her ending up in New York as a member of the New Museum’s incubator programme. Additionally she will be touring with Lauryn Hill in late 2017. A true global fusionist and genre blender in both sound and artistic expression, Jojo Abot is poised to take the world by storm with her uniquely coined AFRO-HYNO-SONIC sound and otherworldly perspective.

Femi Koya (Nigeria)
The new face of the African Renaissance, Femi Koya, widely known as Olufemi, will be bringing his message of African unity to Bushfire this year. Femi celebrates Africa’s love of life with infectious dance numbers that bring fans to their feet wherever be performs. With musical influences that include Fela Kuti, Bob Marley, Manu Di Bango, Hugh Masekela, Baaba Maal and Salif Keita, Femi “will make music about this homecoming and what the future holds if Africans unite. This is our destiny.”

Sands (Swaziland)
Swaziland’s own Sands has been celebrated from all corners of the country after his rise to fame with a collaboration with a local Hip Hop poet Qibho, on the track “Ntfombatana Lenhle.” He really made a name for himself in 2015 when his song Vuma was named BEST RADIO SONG of 2015 in Swaziland for the NACA (National Arts and Culture Awards Swaziland) – other accolades received by Sands included the Male Artist of the year for the NACA Awards (Swaziland).

Reason & The Brass Cartel (South Africa)
SA hiphop star Reason is known for his innovation and style – so it is no surprise to see him teaming up with the Brass Cartel, a unique promotional concept from Jagermeister who started the concept in Germany in 2012. The South African version of this group has a very unique take on the concept incorporating local flavor and a spectacular set of South-African songs from Mango Groove, Kwesta, Johnny Cleg and the late Mandoza. Reason and the Brass Cartel have already collaborated on a single, Do It Like I Can.

Chico Antonio (Mozambique)
“Chico Antonio with his new afrobeat, the epicness of Pink Floyd, the drama of Queen, the rhythm of Fela Kuti, the flair of Franco and the genius of Chico himself." This description from Paul Brickhill aptly describes this unique artist whose sound is a fusion between afro-pop and afro-rock, with a strong jazz influence rooted in Mozambican rhythms. Chico is an icon of contemporary Mozambican music – multi-rhythmic and multi-melodic. His artistic career of over 40 years has generated an unmistakably Mozambican musical style with such creative intensity that it is hard to classify whether you’re inside or outside the country.

The Kiffness (South Africa)
Quirky and imaginative, The Kiffness makes jazzy, groovy & uplifting house music and are fast becoming one of South Africa’s favourite live electronic acts. Founding member Dave Scott is never one to shy away from controversy or a humerous take on the local music industry or politics in general. The Kiffness have become known for their ever-innovative videos, collaborations and ever-so-catchy tunes.

Additional acts confirmed for the MTN Bushfire Festival include:

Siyinqaba (Swaziland)
Mozaik The Producer is a gifted Sound Engineer, Producer and Performer with incredible songwriting and rapping skills.  KrTC of Hip Hop is an accomplished MC and Performer with a bold presence and remarkable charisma. Together they are known as SIYINQABA – which translates to “We are the Fortress” in English and are arguably the most illustrious hip hop duo in The Kingdom of Swaziland.

80 Script (Swaziland)
A Swazi hip-hop artists since the age iof 16, 80 Script’s solo career took off in 2015 and since then he has gone onto huge success in Swaziland and beyond.  His career highlights include sharing a stage with the likes of Cassper Nyovest, AKA, Reason and Kwesta amongst others. He also appeared on the biggest hip hop youth show in South Africa, Shizniz.

Flameboy Universe (Swaziland)
This producer, rapper and electronic music artist has taken Swaziland by storm. He shot to the top of SBIS’s charts and remained their for 5 weeks last year – making him one of the Swazilan’s hottest artists.

Rootswords (Switzerland)
World hip hop – an organic cross border electronic sound from award winning Swiss artist.

Kids n Cats (Austria)
These self described “superpop” artists are known for what some call crazy style. Their recent album is sung in English, French and various contrived languages over funky beats, dream pop elements, buggy guitar riffs.

Gren Seme (Reunion Island)
Grèn Sémé succeeds in bringing maloya far beyond Reunion Island’s borders. Their music, deeply rooted in tradition, explores new horizons and new sounds.

Msaki (SA)
This idiosyncratic singer, songwriter and musician from the Eastern Cape with the voice that expresses honest emotion, and as she explains, who uses “layers and colours and sounds and words to navigate through the joy and mess of life.”

Ben Day & The Concrete Lions (SA)
Political, soulful, African and organic are just some of the words to describe their unique rock sound that saw them shoot to the top of local radio charts last year.

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