We've been waiting for this


Words: Nhlanhla Masemola | Images: Supplied

Since their arrival in 1995, Bongo Maffin has been at the forefront of South African music, making socially conscious songs that capture a Pan-African identity. After more than a decade since being in the studio together, one of kwaito’s most iconic groups is back. Speedy, Thandiswa Mazwai, Jah Seed and Stoan Seate have reunited once again for Bongo Maffin's latest studio album, From Bongo With Love.

"Our fans had been asking for years that we come back together and make some music for them and this time we felt ready to explore that idea,'' said Seate, the rapper of the group who’s considered a godfather of motswako music.


For those worried about Bongo Maffin’s beloved sound, rest assured. From Bongo With Love delivers kwaito, gqom, amapiano, reggae and Afrobeats to sate hardcore fans and newcomers alike. The album is also most notable for its more politically charged tone: gender-based violence and the return of expropriated land, to name a few. “Our country needs a great healing as we realise that our collective pain has turned us into monsters who don’t value the lives of others,” said vocalist Mazwai. “This music hopes to bring joy as well as an awakening to the urgent need for that healing.

Although the musical landscape has since changed during their hiatus, the group’s reggae icon, Seed, believes he understands what’s aided their longevity. “We have remained relevant, because we have come
 to understand that music is a mission not a competition.”

When asked how it feels to reunite and make music with the group, actor-singer Speedy said, “I am so excited to be back. This has been a long-time dream for me since I left over 15 years ago. As a group we are really happy to be able to share our music with our fans again.” After teasing fans with Harare in 2018 and Gimme Joy earlier this year, their album is one of the most anticipated this summer.