Master KG In Conversation With FAULT Magazine

Master KG

Words: Miles Holder

Music can be a great healer, and in a year like 2020, we’ve all at some point needed some serious healing. Thankfully though, Master KG’s single Jerusalema has been there when listeners needed it most. Racking up over 250 million views on Youtube and spawning the viral #JerusalemaDanceChallenge across social media, Jerusalema is a testament to the ways music can transcend language barriers and connect an ever fracturing world. 

We caught up with Master KG to discuss the impact of the song, his message and of course, his FAULTs.  

How did your upbringing in South Africa influence your songwriting?

Master KG: It definitely has, I’m from Limpopo and we have a lot of languages in South Africa and they are part of our daily life, so when I write music I often incorporate these different languages as it relates to so many different people. It’s about educating the rest of the world with our culture too.

In your own words, why do you believe people from so many different backgrounds, countries and circumstances are finding a common love for Jerusalema?

Master KG: I feel like it’s a song for everybody, it’s a spiritual song that gets people together. It’s a happy song and I think everyone can relate to it. It’s spiritually healing and connects you to God.

People are performing the #JerusalemaDanceChallenge in schools, churches and even Houses of Parliament across the world when you were creating the song did the viral factor ever cross your mind?

Master KG: Not at all, when I created the song I never even thought about how it could go viral or even thinking about dance challenges. I just wanted to create good music, a good dance, spiritual song and then what happened afterwards I couldn’t believe it.  It just shows you if people really love something how far it can go! 

Where was the most surprising place you’ve seen the #JerusalemaDanceChallenge performed?

Master KG: Lebanon really surprised me! I saw people having fun and dancing to the song – from Limpopo to Lebanon!

Many artists have been forced to release their music in English because labels think this will bring global success. Jerusalema currently the top shazamed song in the world taking over BTS’s “Dynamite”, do you think this will help stop this practice and allow for greater flexibility?

Master KG: I feel like artists go through a lot of pressure with the creative process. Always people telling you what you should do – to get places. But I always think originality shines through and is something special. We just need to be ourselves and you need to find people that share your vision. It’s good to explore other languages but you need to be true to yourself.

What would you say is the overall goal of your music?

Master KG: I just want to see people united through my music. I want to lift people’s spirits and connect people over the world.

Master KG

What exciting projects are you working on right now?

Master KG: I just want to create more good music! Be ready for some more music from Master KG!

If you could go back to the start of your career and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?

Master KG: Try and read as much as you can, and always consult people before you make a decision.

What is your FAULT?

Master KG: I’m a bad sleeper and wake up late! I’m working on getting myself up earlier.