Music of Botswana

Music of Botswana
Music of Southern Africa
Botswana Botswana
Comoros Comoros
Lesotho Lesotho
Madagascar Madagascar
Malawi Malawi
Mauritius Mauritius
Mayotte Mayotte
Mozambique Mozambique
Namibia Namibia
Réunion Réunion
Seychelles Seychelles
South Africa South Africa
Swaziland Swaziland
Zambia Zambia
Zimbabwe Zimbabwe

Botswana is an African country made up of numerous ethnic groups, though the Batswana are the most numerous. Music is an omnipresent part of Botswana culture, and include popular and folk forms. Batswana church choirs are common across the country. Music education is an integral part of the Botswana educational system. Children of all ages are taught traditional songs and dances.


Popular music

Like many African countries, much of the popular music there is called jazz, though it has little resemblance to the African American genre of that name. There has been a push in recent years to focus on revitalizing the Botswana music industry instead of purchasing foreign releases. Most popular music in Botswana still comes from South Africa, United States, Europe or elsewhere in Africa. Gumba-gumba is a form of modernized Zulu and Tswana music, mixed with traditional jazz; the word gumba comes from township slang for party.

On the Dave Matthews Band's live release Live at Mile High Music Festival, vocalist Dave Matthews commented on the origins of their song on Eh Hee: "I made some friends down in Botswana, in Southern Africa, and they inspired this little song'.

Botswana Hip Hop

hi hip hop crews include The Wizards, a long-standing crew that fuses hip hop with ragga and R&B. The Insiderz, a recently formed crew focusing on spacey type beats blended with R&B and Pop music.The national hip hop radio show Strictly Hip Hop, hosted by Draztik and Slim (both of the Cashless Society Crew and co-founders of [[[Unreleased Records]]]), has done much for the Botswana scene. The record label Phat Boy is also very important [1].the like of the magosi,zeus,scar are one of the greatest artist in the country including the dj turned artist zibanani,has become one of the most respected hip hop heads in botswana and as far as motswako goes,botswana has the best tswakalistas in the world

Top Hip Hop Artists (Not in any order)

  • Scar
  • Orackle
  • Mista Doe
  • Zeus
  • Third Mind
  • K-Bos
  • Michelle
  • Stagga
  • Steez
  • Mosako
  • HT
  • BK Proctor
  • Dice (Ditiro di maswe)
  • Ignition
  • Nitro
  • Qbio
  • Apollo Diablo
  • Scary Kid Scarin Kidz (Ks2)
  • Ruxion
  • Melodramatic
  • T-Smawll
  • Yun Bleezy
  • MBC
  • Nick The Architect
  • Cygnus
  • Sick Bunch

Raggar(Dancehall)Atist 1.1Muscle 2.Ras T 3.Pongo Rista 4.GunPowder 5.King Zee 6.Gen.Wood

Production and Audio Engineering

  • Bk Proktor
  • Prez Beats
  • Eric Ramco
  • Dj Kuchi Productions
  • Bangu Goddamit - Sick Bunch

Folk music

Tswana music is mostly vocal and performed without drums; it also makes heavy use of string instruments. Tswana folk music has instruments such as gumba gumba'Segankure/Segaba and for the last few decades, a guitar has been celebrated as a versatile music instrument for Tswana music. The guitar was originally played in a manner similar to Segaba but with a better rhythm due to plucking, almost completely replacing the violin-like Segaba untily such prodigies of segaba as Ratsie Setlhako re-popularised segaba in the 80s with the help of radio. In the absence of instruments a clapping rhythm is used in music with the typical chant and answer manner of singing. The absence of drumming is predominant and is peculiar of an African Tribe.Tswana music has best producers such as Ramco loco and Ronald Sekaname who is currently based in Malaysia, signed under Tak Boleh records, in coloboration with Panggilan Masuk and kredit masembula. There are other Hip hop artists who have not been signed but really talented like Banxs from thamagaaaa and Thabang in Lobatse.the hip hop genre of botswana became the most dominating when zeus came up,it has grown from the days of one of our legend dj sid who started the p-side and introduced western music to botswana.hip hop heads in botswana are far by the best tswakalistas in the world.a genre

Folk Music Styles

  • Huru
  • Tsutsube
  • Phathisi
  • Borankana
  • Mokomoto
  • Selete
  • Ndazola
  • Setapa
  • Chesa
  • Stibikoko

Kwaito Music

This genre originates from the townships of Johannesburg. This movement has now found its way into Botswana where it is becoming more popular.

  • Ghavorr
  • Mapetla
  • Skazzo
  • P-Mag

Folk musicians

  • Speech Madimabe
  • Shumba Ratshega
  • Machesa Traditional Troupe
  • Mokorwana
  • Culture Spears
  • Shirley
  • Dikakapa
  • Ratsie Setlhako
  • Stampore
  • Kwataeshele
  • Jonny Kobedi
  • Stikasola
  • George Swabi
  • Brian "Br-Usher "Kelebeng
  • Moxy G
  • The 1 Spark 1
  • Spiderman
  • Poifo le Wonder
  • Yun Bleezy

Benson Ditsheko Lesedi

Kwasa Kwasa

An African version of Rhumba popularised in Central Africa has a strong following in Botswana and has produced highly acclaimed musicians such as Franco and Afro Musica, Jeff Matheatau, Chris Manto 7 and Alfredo Mos and Les Africa sounds. It has a slower rhythm than the original type and predictably tends to get a rapid rhythm in the middle of the song. It is still not as hectic as its parent Afro Rhumba. Unlike Rhumba, Kwasa kwasa has a simple leg routine, focusing more on an erotic movement of hips and buttocks.

Some artists have attempted to speed it up and made it more danceable to breakdance with great success. Artist Vee is one of them and his version is known as Kwaito Kwasa, from a combination of Kwaito music with a kwasa kwasa rhythm and guitar.[1]


The development of rock as a followed genre in Botswana has been a slow one. The music has however started to gain some momentum, partly due to the youth's exposure to mainstream media like MTV, Channel O and the internet. The native Batswana has since showed appreciation for this genre. Ever since the year 2000, a lot of bands have been formed. Most these have played locally and a few have toured Southern Africa. The rock culture is now evidently recognised, with these bands coming together to fight AIDS under a tour titled "Rock Against AIDS". [1]

Notable bands include:

  • Crackdust
  • Wrust
  • Metal Orizon
  • Nosey Road
  • Stealth
  • Stane
  • Skinflint
  • Dust n Fire
  • Remuda
  • No!semakers On Parade

Music institutions

The National Music Eisteddfod is held annually in Selebi-Phikwe [2].


  1. ^ Culture and customs of Botswana‎ by James Raymond Denbow and Phenyo C. Thebe. Greenwood Publishing Group:2006(page 214)ISBN 0313331782.

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