All photography by Kgotso Modikoe
MeccaMind launches 'Let The Kidz Play' | independent artists reclaiming the local party scene
"The substance behind ‘Let The Kidz Play’ is not meant to be confined solely to the music. I want to give a space and platform for overlooked creatives who haven’t been given a chance to “play” due to gatekeeping, lack of accessible opportunities or general layers of bureaucracy within the industry.
To this end, I have already hosted an event in Cape Town in collaboration with Vision TV to provide the necessary spark to push this growth."
– MeccaMind (2022)
Sooo... I read a super interesting article on the Rhodes University website recently.
The article was about a report conducted by the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO), at the end of March this year, regarding the impact of the cultural and creative sector to the economy in the post COVID-19 environment. Basically the report was gauging how beneficial South Africa's arts & culture industry towards the economy – and I think the results further reinforce what the youth has been saying this entire time. "Provide us with the opportunities and we will inflict the change which we all wish to see".
Ayanda Tondi – more widely known as 'MeccaMind' – is a 21 year old artist from Bloemfontein who is currently residing in Cape Town. He is the creative mastermind behind orchestrating this youth-focused event, in collaboration with VisionTV, and is also working on his upcoming mixtape, also titled Let The Kidz Play.
"I started making music when I was 15 because I was bored by most of what was being released, so I was like “why don’t I just make the type of music I want to listen to?”. Surprisingly to me, people loved it – started catching on around my city, especially amongst the skaters, stoners and artsy kids. Some of my influences include Outkast, A Tribe Called Quest, Erykah Badu and the whole Soulection movement. I think it’s pretty evident in the beat selection and cadence on my songs."
The music video for “Sunny” – the first single of the mixtape – was just the first in a series of surprises which MeccaMind has in store for us with LTKP. The title is inspired by his friend and painter, 'Sundog', who also painted the single artwork. It's all about the experience of being young, irresponsible and unapologetic – the freedom and creativity capturing the essence of youth.
"As for the tape? You can expect that around October." adds MeccaMind.
My personal belief is the older generations of creativity should start teaching themselves how to hand over the torch to a younger incoming cohort of creatives. This is essential for the betterment of our creative industry as a whole, as the regeneration of ideas cannot consistently come from a single "ageing" generation.
To iterate some juice facts which I uncovered in the Rhodes University article, Vitshima explained:
"The creative economy accounted for 6% of all jobs in South Africa, which translates into just under 1 million jobs. This was a slight increase from 2017 when the creative economy made up 5.9% of all jobs (approximately 965 000 jobs). As much as these results are estimates, they depict that the creative economy in South Africa makes a significant contribution to employment."
If you ask me – there needs to be a transition from "maker" to "manager" as time progresses and experience builds, so that there can be meaningful cross-collaboration, and ethical growth, within our creative industry.
This is exactly why our support of creative endeavours such as LTKP require our full support. DJ sets and live acts included: John Johannesburg, Sean Share, Tristan Trè, DJ Spots and Furger, Club Valley, Mori, Unbleachedminds, bl33d, MeccaMind, Lakei and Ewiva!