Few musicians in Namibia come close to the creative genius that is Cassidy Karon.
Be it lyricism, flow, creative vision, or simply the ability to appeal across a diverse fan base – Cassidy is undisputed as an all-round artist.
He gives us an insight into the vision behind the visuals to his single, ‘Chains’. He also takes us back to his kwaito roots and how it feels like to bag hip hop and kwaito nods as a solo artist.
How do you feel about being back in the game and earning NAMAs nominations for your solo project?
It’s always a good feeling to be rewarded with a nomination after such a long time of hard work. When anybody notices what you’ve put in, it’s always a good feeling, so I’m so humbled. I still can’t believe it. I accidentally wrote on my whiteboard in a permanent marker – male artist of the year 2020.
Putting out there in the universe you know. It’s the first time I’ve been nominated, even with Paradox we never got the artist of the year nomination.
Has it always been a goal to go solo and hopefully be nominated in some categories you wouldn’t have been nominated in as a group?
No, not necessarily. The reason for me going solo was complete besides the NAMA’s. It was more of the creative freedom to tell my individual story.
As the album dropped I wasn’t thinking it would be as successful as it is right now because I took a less traveled road so it’s very career rewarding for me.
You’re also nominated in the Best Hip Hop category, how does it feel to be recognised, especially since hip hop is very important and close to you?
Hip hop is very important. It feels good to be nominated in that genre in particular because I come from hip.
This is especially important to me because it’s like a ‘welcome back to hip hop’. But it is 100 percent, more importantly, a ‘welcome back to music’.
You’ve also been nominated in the Best Kwaito category. Was that a surprise to you?
I’ve been advocating that Namibian Kwaito is actually hip hop. The way hip hop culture is in the rest of the world, in the streets, the countries that have influenced us in Southern Africa, that is the Kwaito culture here. The first music I listened to as a child was Trompies and those types of guys, so I was indoctrinated by Kwaito, first things first.
My album is called it ‘80,s Mercedes’ because I wanted to talk about my influences and everything I went through and take it in retrospect. I basically went to my roots which were kwaito.
You can hear in this album that’s exactly what you live for … modern hip hop with a twist.
You have to touch the potjiekos of everything. I have become an advocate for duality. To be dual, to be multifaceted. So being nominated for both Best Kwaito and Best Hip Hop off of one album? I don’t even know if that’s been done before.
We are losing our minds over your video for the single ‘Chains’ which features Romi … Tell us how it came about?
From the beginning, I knew I wanted to put Romi at the forefront because it’s a trap song and I don’t really do trap. I also wanted to give it a good message so that we can kill two birds with one stone.