Hip Hop Pantsula (real name is Jabulani Tsambo) is a popular South African Motswako hip hop emcee who frequently performs in ethnic languages, though mostly Setswana.
Pantsula attended high school at St. Albans College, Pretoria. Raised in Mmabatho, Pantsula's break came in 1997 when he and his school friends met with producer Chicco Twala who produced their debut "Party". The band split soon after the release of "Party". Tsambo met singer–producer Isaac Mthethwa who then worked on his debut album. The result was Introduction, an album that introduced a new genre. The album was recorded in different South African ethnic tongues such as Setswana, isiZulu and Sesotho.
Pantsula appeared on the third one-off TV special of quiz show Test The Nation, titled "National Parenting Test", as the Team Captain representing fathers. In 2007 he won the third season of the reality dance show Strictly Come Dancing along with his professional dance partner Hayley Bennet. His hits include the single from his O Mang Reloaded album, "Tswaka", "Jabba" and "Tshwara" (the latter both from YBA 2 NW).
'Guess who’s back and more styling?' Yes, it’s Hip Hop Pantsula, and true to his lyrics, his most recent release YBA 2 NW is styling indeed. Jabulani Tsambo makes no mistake with this release, confirming his status as one of SA’s most popular Hip Hop acts by delivering a repeat performance of Pantsula styled hip hop.
Jabulani Tsambo is a true example of a South African story gone international. Jabu, who hails from Mafikeng, has managed to transcend the misconception of vernacular being an implausible way of making music to arguably the only way of self definition in South African Hip Hop.
Jabba, as he is affectionately known by his multitudes of fans, has had a remarkable time, riding a crest that is constantly on the rise with every venture he pursues. His variances have made everyone, young and old, black and white stand up and take note of his immense talent.
Hip Hop Pantsula as he is also known acknowledges that he has had an extraordinary year. He says: "When too many good things in your life happen at once, it either means you have been having a messed up life and you are getting what you have been missing out on or that life is basically trying to cushion you for the biggest tragedy of your life. One cannot take things for granted and start becoming arrogant”. Jabba has a distinct sense of humility.
Grammy award nominee Amerie will have a cameo role in his new video which will be shot in Johannesburg.
HHP says that although working with the US singer is very exciting, he feels that the South African music industry was ready for the world five years ago, and what is happening now is an inevitable case of hard work and its rewards.
He has vowed to set an unprecedented SA record of releasing five videos for this album, bidding farewell to the days of shooting one video and hoping that media institutions will play it. He says the internet provides more opportunities as a public relations, marketing and a sales tool.
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