Apple Music has announced South African singer and songwriter Halo Yagami as its latest Up Next artist.
The announcement coincides with the release of Yagami’s four-track debut EP Usiba. The project features rapper Maglera Doe Boy and singer Marcus Harvey on ‘Gologo’ and ‘My Money’, respectively. With a neo-kwaito production style coupled with songwriting that takes inspiration from traditional umbhaqanga melodies, Halo Yagami produces smooth, modern tones with a hybrid edge.
Halo Yagami will be featured on Apple Music’s Up Next playlist that includes a dynamic class of new and emerging artists, handpicked by Apple Music editors from around the world. The playlist is genre-agnostic and represents a line-up of artists whom Apple Music’s global editors are passionate about and eager to expose to a larger audience.
“My journey has been a crazy roller coaster so far, from leaving my hometown to quitting my full-time job just a few weeks ago,” Halo Yagami said. “Today, I woke up to the news that I am the first Apple Music Up Next local artist for the year. What may seem like a stepping stone in my journey ahead means everything in this exact moment; what felt impossible yesterday feels attainable today. This is where it all starts, this is the opening scene in the movie, this is where my story begins.”
Halo Yagami, born Monde Ngcobo, hails from KwaMashu in Durban, but later relocated to Johannesburg to pursue his musical dream. He has been candid about his struggles as an independent artist, with little to no support system at times, but his success is also testament to perseverance paying off.
He has collaborated with local artists including Sjava, Phila Dlozi and MashBeatz, among others. He has also worked with respected producers like Vuyo Manyike and Vaughan Fourie.
The vast global Up Next roster of past talent includes Rema, Mr Eazi, Burna Boy, 6lack, Daniel Caesar, H.E.R., Greta Van Fleet, Khalid and Amy Shark, among many others.
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