Legendary music duo, Jotham “Vetkuk” Mbuyisi and Zynne “Mahhota” Sibika celebrate 18 years of hosting events. It was a chilly morning when we met with Vetkuk as he let us in on the wonderful journey.
The pair is known for their music that has kept the fans entertained for years plus hosting events such as SA Music Carnival which started as Dj Mahoota’s birthday celebration before they came up with a new concept to celebrate the South African culture, different sounds, and styles. Another event which was the event that introduced them to the events industry is the Spring jump-off.
“Spring jump-off started in September 2001; it was the launch of Vetkuk vs Mahoota album. We hosted the event at a place called Leisure’s Lake. That event attracted [about] one thousand five hundred people,” said Vetkuk.
“The turn out shook us because we were not expecting so many people.”
There were a lot of people involved in it which included Mahoota, Vetkuk, Dj Pepsi and Greg Maloka.
Spring jump-off was made an annual event for young people, it kept growing and attracting bigger numbers. It had young people looking forward to the event every year as they introduced young and fresh talent through the events.
“All these acts who are now super stars started there as upcoming artists, because that was their only platform. No other platform was there for the youth to express what they wanted to do”
He said the lists included renowned Djs like Black Coffee, Dj Fresh, Euphonic and Dj Tira
They wanted to be different when they started.
“At that time there were no youth events, it was either the jazz festivals, clubs or street bashes, we did not have an event mainly for young people. Kwaito and house music were huge, we wanted a signature outdoor event for young people,” he said.
Vetkuk said they had no intentions of making money out the event, that is why it was free access for most people.
“We were just hosting events; we did not think about the business side of it. On our first event we had about 700 people coming in for free”
“Back then Kwaito and house were blowing up, everyone was fighting for space and recognition, it was never about money.”
After their second event they realised that they needed to look at the business side of the events because they attracted a lot of people.
“We saw the potential of the event being bigger, we were seeing this small thing we thought of three years ago becoming bigger than us. At that point even Yfm wanted money and the municipality knew about us so we had to follow JOC”
In 2010 when celebrating 10 years of being in the events business, they decided to launch the Spring Jump Off events in all provinces. Some did well and some were not profitable, but they still managed to stay in the game.
He said what made people to not be able to sustain themselves in the industry is that they limited and boxed themselves.
“Relevancy is you being out there and doing what is currently being done in the industry. You must move with the times” said the Dj.
He said people should not be afraid of being creative and failing.
“Creativity is very important because right now all the events are the same. Most events have the same line-up, from January to December we have the same artists in different events because people do not want to be different.”
“When everyone is booking these called big names, do an event that has people they do not know. You need to fail and learn from it. We also did not make money with our first event.”
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