‘AKA knew that Mass Country would be his last project’

Kiernan Forbes, affectionately known by his stage name AKA, knew that he was not going to be around to celebrate the launch of his new album Mass Country.

This is according to AKA’s manager Nhlanhla “Nivo” Ndimande, who shared: “It’s crazy for me to say this, but I think spiritually, Kiernan knew that this was his last project.

“He has never submitted an album so early in his life. Spiritually, he knew, even if he didn’t know consciously.”

AKA was laid to rest at the Westpark Cemetery in Joburg on Saturday last week after he was ambushed outside the Wish restaurant on Florida Road in Durban over a week ago.

The rapper had gone to Durban to perform at the relaunch of YUGO nightclub and had just finished enjoying a meal with friends when he was ambushed.

His murder is suspected to have been a hit and the police are investigating. No one has been arrested yet. 

Speaking about the rapper’s passing and his music hours after the new album was released at midnight on Friday, Ndimande shared some insight on the making of Mass Country.

“The album is undeniably one of the best of AKA’s sprawling career and sets a new benchmark for South African music,” Ndimande said.

“Him adding Last Time and making it the first song on the album speaks volumes.”

Ndimande reminisced on moments he shared with the fallen star, and going on camps during the making of Mass Country.

“It’s been a two-year process working on this album, from him giving us the vision and telling us what exactly he wanted to do. The first big camp we did for it, we went and recorded at a house in Mooi River.

“There’s something he said in these sessions, he kept on saying he was trying to do something that he’s never done before. So, he needed everybody that was on the team to do something that they’d never done before.

“What AKA wanted to do was create an album that the people of South Africa could embrace and cherish,” Ndimande said. 

Producers Oriah, Fdeeezus and Christer helped make AKA’s vision concise and cohesive.

Other musicians who worked on the album included AKA’s partner Nadia Nakai, Emtee, KDDO, Khuli Chana, Nasty C and Blxckie.

“AKA has always had an uncanny ability to bring out the best in his collaborators. Many have dubbed Nasty C and Khuli Chana’s verses as the most outstanding of their careers.

“I remember with Emtee, half of that verse Kiernan wrote with him. He’s always had a vision. He always knew what he wanted, and he was able to get that out of people.

“AKA reached out to Blxckie on his own accord at a later point, and got Nadia Nakai to lace a verse too.

“The result is an infectious, melodious cut that combines AKA and Nadia’s rap with Blxckie’s unique vocal range.” 

While his death has been a bitter pill to swallow, his team is determined to continue celebrating his legacy through music. The album is available on all digital platforms.


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A post shared by AKA (@akaworldwide)

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A post shared by AKA (@akaworldwide)

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