Three countries. Four cities. Eight months. One incredible True Music journey. Together Boiler Room and Ballantine’s Scotch Whisky have travelled across Africa to uncover exceptional talent and tell the stories of musicians and artists who uncompromisingly do it their way. Kicking off in Cape Town in November 2017, Boiler Room x Ballantine’s True Music Africa toured Douala, Cameroon and Nairobi, Kenya before concluding with a powerful show finale in Johannesburg on 21 June 2018. The Station in downtown Johannesburg was transformed into a one-night-only live music experience the likes of which only Boiler Room and Ballantine’s can create.
Hundreds of fans converged on the repurposed train station to appreciate and dance to some of the most exciting musicians and DJs across South Africa’s thriving house and gqom scene, including DJ Maphorisa, Moonchild Sanelly, Da Capo, Uncle Partytime and Symatics. Ballantine’s can host my birthday party, I kid you not! This event was seamless, no issues with long lines or spending hours waiting for our names to be confirmed. We got to guzzle tons of whisky while grooving to my favourite, Maphorisa!!
The night before, Ballantine’s and Boiler Room hosted the True Music Forum, an evening of talks, learning and idea exchanges held at the Victoria Yards in Johannesburg. It was the third True Music Forum and the first to happen in Africa. Conversations ranged from how digital is catalysing Africa’s creatives to the ever-evolving club scene. Speakers included Boni Mnisi (This is What Makes Us Girls), Johannesburg based DJ Doowap (YFM), Kenny Nzama (DJ Kenzhero), Theresho Selesho, music journalist Helen Herimbi and SA music legend Oskido.
The panels, keynote and all performances across the tour were broadcast live to the world via Boiler Room and Ballantine’s platforms, garnering an unprecedented number of live views, reaching more than 10 million people around the world. It’s more proof that African music and the continent’s talent have the power to reach all corners of the globe.
The telling of the True Music story includes the creation of a documentary for each show. Watch them via the links below to experience what the True Music platform represents; how the Boiler Room x Ballantine’s partnership continues to champion artists with a pioneering spirit and how it challenges them to continue pushing boundaries across Africa.
A big thank you to Ballantine’s and Boiler Room. I have had an epic experience and I cannot wait for the next one! Y’all know how to take care of your people!
The Johannesburg documentary will be released later this month. Stay close to Ballantine’s social platforms to be the first see it.