KayGee XI is a 22 year old recording and performing artist from Zandspruit Informal Settlement (Honeydew), North of Johannesburg. I make music and I am music. I think that’s the most appropriate way to put it, because the music has become a huge part of my life. I am an ex-footballer, having had played for Wits academy sides growing up, but the football dream was cut short when I suffered from a terrible injury back in 2014… and shortly after that, I dedicated myself to the music and the rest is history.
Why Hip hop?
I’d say I chose hip hop because hip hop got me through the most challenging times of my life, and that was during my high schooling years. I suffered from depression a lot during my high school years and being the ‘cool guy, I was too proud to talk to anyone about it and so I found comfort in hip hop music as I found some of the artists I listened to very relatable, and that gave me a sense of not being alone in whatever I was going through. Hip Hop gave me a shoulder to lean on. I grew up in the Lil Wayne Carter 3 era, and I have to credit him for inspiring me to start rapping myself. Weezy a LEGEND.
Your recent amazing music video “Pxrple Drxnk”, who do you want to acknowledge and how did you manage to come up with such successful video?
Firstly I want to send a huge shout out to Pxrple Drxnk (she knows herself ha-ha), then a huge shout out to my brother and producer Nate Africa for the monster of a beat, this song is nothing without the two. As for the music video, the credit goes to Visuals by Nano. We had no budget at all for this music video but somehow, Nano managed to put together a GREAT music video, I’m really proud of how the video came out. I encourage anyone who’s willing to invest in their craft to follow @yoboii_nano on Instagram and book your music video shoot with him. He’s a genius behind the lens. The music video is out on YouTube and was hosted by UK YouTuber and SA Hip Hop Reactor – Madzie Superset. Again, I have Nano to credit for that plug too. I hope people catch on to the music video, and who knows – God willingly, we might end up on TV!
You dropped a hot Extended Play / (EP) “Transitions” featuring hits produced by the likes of VeeBeats and Nate Africa, What is the motive behind the EP and how has the experience been working with those producers?
VeeBeats & Nate Africa are my brothers for life. We share the same passion, love and enthusiasm for music, so working together on this EP was magical. The two are super talented producers and I consider myself on of the very lucky ones to have them in my friendship/musical circle. I have to credit the features appearances from Spec XI, Dizzy, Scima, Sash, together with both Vee and Nate Africa because they all played a role in helping me put out the best EP in Honeydew right now. I am proud of myself and everyone else involved in this EP. I am working on my debut album at the moment, so 2018 is still going to get a whole lot of this work!
Who are the other guys that you have worked with on the music industry in total?
I have worked with quite a lot of people on the come up with me, but the people I can mention now are my team members, the people I work closely with, namely – Spec XI, Dizzy, XCVI, Nate Africa, CK & S’ven Beats. These are the people I spend most of my time with making music. In terms of visuals, I work with Make It Known Productions and Visuals by Nano. I am quite blessed to have a team of individuals that share the same collective goal as me, it makes working a lot more fun! I should mention though, I would really love to work on a song or two with Gemini Major in the near future.
How is the response from family and friends towards your music journey?
My family is the most supportive in terms of my music journey. My parents pull up to some of my shows and my dad is the one snapping 90% of my performance videos. I am blessed to have been born into a family that believes in dreams and their possibilities of coming true. My friends will tell you how my music is always playing in my dad’s car. The support at home is crazy! My friends are also a solid support system for my music; I get so much love from them that I don’t take for granted. I think it is important to be friends with people that are both your motivation and your inspiration, because these people are legit great at what they do and that just pushes me to always strive to be great at what I do too.
Your stage name KayGee XI, how did you come up with it? (especially the XI)
XI is Roman numeral for the number ‘11’, and that was my football number, together with my late brother TsiTsi’s football number. In the football team, the number 11 is always considered the most skilful or creative player on the pitch, and therefore, the XI became a metaphor for creativity. I have a movement named XI GANG, and the translates to the Creative Collective. So KayGee XI is basically KayGee for the XI.
One word to describe KayGee XI?
Follow KayGee XI on;
Facebook – KayGee XI
Twitter - @KayGeeXI
Instagram - @xigangmedia_za
Soundcloud: KayGee From The XI
Bookings: [email protected] | +27 61 657 2185
Word of Motivation?
Never let anyone downplay your dreams. If you believe in something, GO FOR IT! Don’t stop! Keep going. It’s a lot of things that are going to try discourage you and distract you from your dreams, but remember that the moment you start receiving all that hate – you doing something right and there’s absolutely no reason to stop. Also, be yourself… you can never go wrong when being yourself. Be you and go make your dreams a reality!
I already sent shout outs to the people I work with, so the final shout outs go out to all the people that support my music and are about my movement. They are the people I’m constantly working hardest to ensure that I make proud at all times, without the listeners, my music is as good as useless, so a HUGE thank you to each and every one of you! GO GET THE EP! #TransitionsEP