The sound is a fusion of Amapiano and Hip hop. The goal is trying to find the gap; Hip hop was not doing too well and Amapiano was running the streets.

DJ Venom

DJ Venom & Shishiliza have delivered yet another hit song featuring a lineup of electric artists: Yumbs, Rasby, Blxckie, the late Riky Rick, and Tshego. On the second day of its release, Sondela was already number one on Apple Music across all genres. The Duo (Venom & Shishiliza) reached 400k streams in just one week. It then topped the charts locally and internationally in just 18 days. This is the second single that the pair released together and has proven to be more successful than the first, Sho Boy.

Here is a list of the significant milestones Sondela hit in just a week:

  • Number 1 on the Apple Music hip hop chart.
  • Number 1 on the Apple Music Chart (all genres).
  • It trended at number 1 on Twitter.
  • The single received over 400 000 streams.
  • It trended at number 1 on YouTube Music.
  • Peaked into top 20 in 1st week on Radio Rams Chart, currently sitting at number 2 on rams Chart.

We got on a zoom call with the Sondela hitmakers to get more light on how the two got together, the industry’s current climate according to them, and what the future holds for the duo.

As an ice breaker, Bash, please tell us more about Shishiliza. Who is Shishiliza, is it your alter ego?

Shishiliza: Shishiliza and Bash are two different people; Shishiliza has always been my nickname. Those who know me are not surprised by the name. Shishiliza represents my artist side, and I decided to use it now that I am putting out music as an artist and not being behind the scenes as I am as Bash.

How did the working relationship come about?

Shishiliza: So how it came about was Venom has a song called U that he dropped, and I managed to get featured with someone there. Venom and I decided to work on a track together.

One track became two tracks and then became more tracks, before we knew it was an entire project coming together. We are a duo and we are currently working on an album that will be coming out soon.

We have recently dropped the music video for Sho Boy, which is the first single we dropped.

Tell us about what inspires your sound.

Venom: The sound is a fusion of Amapiano and hip hop. R&B and Afrobeats and led by piano & hip hop. Our goal is trying to find the gap as Hip hop has not been doing too well while Amapiano has been running the streets.

The sound goes way back to when Ricky was doing Ungazincishi, which was a good blend of Amapiano & Hip Hop. That’s the kind of energy and vibe we are bringing.

Tell us more about your hit song, Sondela.

Shishiliza: We gave Yumbs a brief of the sound that we were looking for, and it took a while for the beat to come together, but when he finally sent it, we were blown away and knew then and there that this was without a doubt going to be a big song.

We met Rasby for the first time at Blxckie studio just a week ago, and I told Riky Rick that I think we got someone for the hook. She came in, and she was recorded and engineered by Ricky.

The next step was getting the artists on; I reached out to Tshego who I have a great relationship; that goes far back to the Familytree days. I could hear his voice when I listened to the beat and knew that I needed him to bring this track home. It’s like what Jeremih does on a song when featured by rappers overseas, and I needed Tshego for a similar kill.

The following person was Blxckie, we vibed, and he did his thing. Riky was the last person to send through his vocals; he sent them on the actual day when we needed to submit
We didn’t expect him to do it, but he pulled through and sent his fire verse.

We knew that it would be a massive song and as big as it is. I kept telling people that I wanted Sondela to be as big as Jerusalema by MasterKG. It has only been out for a few weeks, and the numbers are already insane, and I know the song is far from done. It’s still going to reach crazier heights. We started working on the song last June, so it took a while, but it was worth it.

Hip hop vs Yanos, what is your take?

Venom: I believe people should do whatever they want and what works for them. If being strictly hip hop works for you, do just that. If crossing over is what you feel like doing, then handle it, it’s what works for you; there are no rules.

Shishiliza: I agree with Venom. We are in an era where I feel you can’t be limited to genre. But it is all about whatever works for you as well. We are all driven by our artistic perspective because we do things to be true to ourselves first.

What do you think the future holds for Amapiano?

Venom: I believe the genre is something bigger than what we can fathom as a country. This is just the early days for the sound at an international level. People outside South Africa are crazily embracing the sound, and it’s only going to get crazier.

Shishiliza: I think it’s still going to grow madly. I feel like it will do more than what Afrobeats did internationally. It will end up having its billboard chart like we saw Afrobeats has its own Billboard charts. It’s fascinating to see the growth and be part of the movement.

Given the undeniable success of the collaborative effort’s single “Sondela”, Venom & Shishiliza decided to strike while the iron is hot. So, the two put together a writing camp last week for two days in the heart of the North, Bryanston, to operate and finish the project.

The camp brought together a combination of Hip hop and Amapiano producers and artists, namely:


Herc Cut The Lights
Luu Da Deejay
Junior Taurus
Felo Le Tee


Samthing Soweto
DBN Gogo
Sizwe Alakine
Aubrey Qwana
And many many more.

We look forward to jamming to the complete, new project by Venom & Shishiliza but while you wait, keep running up the numbers by streaming Sondela and the new music for Sho Boy.

Venom x Shishiliza – ‘Sho Boy’ (Official Music Video)
Venom x Shishiliza – ‘Sondela’ Out Now

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