Snass, a 23-year-old rapper from Botswana, Southern Africa has released a 13-track album entitled, “Playa of the Year.” Snass becomes the first rapper to release a solo album in the field of Hip-hop/R&B in Botswana. “Playa of the Year” includes hits such as, “Never,” [/i]“Now that you’re mine,” “Party all night,” and “Is this the end?” Snass’ “Playa of the Year” was released under Mos Syde Entertainment, of which Snass himself is the CEO.
A lot of cats try to do Hip-hop to make a living out of it, but Snass chooses to stay in school and do Hip-hop as a HOBBY. “I also do it to inspire. Music is as powerful as love. Thus music is love, and it is easy for people to listen to love. Love inspires…” [So you gotta love Hip-hop…]
Hip-hop is a culture, a game, a money-maker (business); it is love; it is a way of life. Hip-hop is the medium people use to express themselves. And one has to choose what he or she wants out of Hip-hop. And it is usually tough for young MCs/Rappers starting out. They have to first accept it as a culture and love, and then decide whether they want to do it as an income generator or as a hobby. Again, it is not easy to get in the game. As a game, Hip-hop is more than what it may seem to be.
“I think it usually works better when you first start out on your own, or as a solo, because that way, you get to see the big picture at your own pace. Starting out as a group puts you in the jungle of obligations. You are forced to come on time; you are forced to adjust your schedule so it fits that of the group. You are not gonna learn if you take this route, and all I can say is, you are oblivion-bound.” - Snass
Snass’ album features artists such as Melita (Snass’ sister), JG (Canadian R&B singer), Caleb, Fetz, Pyro, Blac Death (From Ghana), K-oz, Jizzy, and Isis Tha Godess (Female rapper originally from G.C). Snass and Pyro are based in New York while Isis Tha Godess is based in Indiana. Fetz, Caleb, Blac Death, and K-oz, are based in Gaborone City or G.C, Botswana.
The dominant color on Snass’ CD is sky blue which symbolizes Botswana’s own flag. “I’m proud of my country. I always make sure that when I come out on TV or any form of media, I am in the Botswana blue (Baby blue) so people can see how proud I am: even in the states, I do the same thing. I mean, you gotta represent where you from. I am also inspired by this line from Dead Prez’s ‘Let’s Get Free:’ it says, it’s not about where you from, it’s about the motherland…I’m a African, man that’s deep.”
Snass says he started off as an R&B head, but Hip-hop won his heart when his dream of doing R&B became a failure. Snass’ aim is to inspire and educate other people by doing positive things. And this is clearly heard on his album. The whole album is radio friendly. Tracks already receiving airplay in Botswana, South Africa, Canada, USA, and London are: “Now that you’re mine” feat. JG from Canada, and “Is this the end?”
“Now that you’re mine” is about this gal who got played by the man she used to love so much. Now that the man is no more in her life, she feels she gotta go on her own. She doesn’t want anything to do with guys. She thinks all guys are the same. But Snass is quick to sing her a song telling her that he is her Romeo, and that she should be his Juliet. It is a romantic song right there.
“I am not more into underground. Not like I am commercial and wanna make a living out o’ this. But I can tell you that I get influenced or inspired by successful people. P.Diddy is one of them successful people I look up to. Success is not necessarily measured by the dollar sign, it could also be measured by the amount of love that surrounds you.” - Snass
Snass was in New York when the World Trade Center Twin towers collapsed. It’s envy, pain, love, and hate that get Snass to pen down such emotional tracks as “Is this the end?” “The way things are going on/I can’t take it anymore/I see nothing but dark clouds/Wars and diseases/Lot of blood lost/How can I survive?” To Snass it looks like the end is here. And if it is not the end, then his sophoremore effort, “The Second Coming,” will certainly drop acting like the Messiah’s 13th disciple.
“I was in New York when them twin towers went down. I used to live like 5 minutes from the World Trade center in Brooklyn Heights (first stop after the Brooklyn Bridge), but moved to Queens before the world suffered a disorder. Basically, the September 11 events, racial profiling at major airports worldwide, struggle, pain, hunger, and starvation in “some” parts of Africa, not forgeting AIDS, inspired my song (Is this the end?). I mean I can’t take it anymore. The whole thing is a serious damage to everybody’s well being. We can’t afford to keep counting days like hours (a quote from Is this the end?). I experienced racial profiling in Zurich, Switzerland in 2001 when I was traveling to Botswana. I was made to take off my boots. I was the first in line and thought everybody in line would be made to do the same. It never happened. And I had the worst journey home. It is as simple as this, the world in this phase, is straight up messed up. We got different forms of religions, but the bottom line right now is that we gotta pray. You know!” – Snass
Snass music has been recognized in the US, and that is confirmed by several invitations from social workers and church ministers in New York to come and address the youth in the New York City area. And now Snass is planning on talking to the Youth in Africa about the dangers of AIDS.
[i]“Basically, Mos Syde music is meant to inspire. These times are rough…so we need something to hold us steady. I don’t think we’re that strong to do on our own. Nah!”