Amanpino, The New Rave of Sound.


Amapiano was coined from Zulu’s plural article Ama and Piano. It is a type of electronic dance music genre that started in South Africa in 2016. 

It has a unique component of music instruments like Kwaito baselines, jazz, high pitched piano melodies 90s south African House, and Barcadi.

Amapiano also is known as Piano to the Hip, gained popularity in the country’s township known as Gauteng. However, there are controversies surrounding its origin with many accounts claiming that it started in Johannesburg, Soweto, katlehong, Alexandra, Vosloorus where it is mostly very popular.

The ongoing debate has claimed that the genre started in Pretoria DJ Mjava,  due to its similarity with Barcadi.

The complexity of the historical background of the music genre makes it difficult to accurately pinpoint the real origin of the music. The music can be once in a while soulful, sometimes carnal, regularly epicurean.


The success of Amapiano can never be exhausted, it initially started in townships especially in the popular pubs and Taverns in Gauteng. It was mostly shared around on social media especially Whatsapp, Instagram and Facebook by the fans.

Not until recently, it became a mainstream genre that has been recognized in the whole of South Africa and beyond.


It is also available in several platforms like Spotify, Deezer and Apple Music where they can all be accessed


It also gained more traction as a result of DJ’s mixes who would recreate hit songs and infused the Jazzy Low tempo spice into the song and covert it to Amapiano sound.

Some of the DJs who were known for this are  DJ Ganyani, DJ Maphorisa and Kabza De Small, Sun-El Musician. 


Amapiano has become the rave of the moment, which has become very popular in many African countries and beyond.

Piano to the  hip is a melodious tune which has been fused with gong gong sound that has been mixed up  Gqom by some DJs


Amapiano has received its shares of criticism and hate. Early last year 2019, a german-born American based Disc Jockey  DJ Lars Behrenroth lambasted the genre and its artists on twitter.

“Finally checked it out for the first time and all I can say is Amapiano & Godf#$! of Deep House = same WhatsApp group… what a snoozefest..eeeekkk”.  

 —Lars Behrenroth

The tweet drew a lot of backlashes from fans and many south African music artists who didn’t take it lightly.

Some of them  include, 

Black Coffee, he replied ‘’True…but 1st understand the culture of the Country and what music does to change the lives of its people no matter what genre…u can’t just tweet people’s careers away in a glass house in California that the same people help you to build. Exploit us but please Respect us too.’’

Zakes Bantwini, replied to him saying “I am a fan of Kwaito, Gqom, and Amapiano. I am not ashamed. I’m a House head but these genres are purely South African and need to be supported by every South African,”— Zakes Bantwini

Prince Kaybee vented on the issue as he blasted  Lars’s tweet and told him.

‘’South Africans shouldn’t let caucasian house music DJs talk bad about a proudly black pioneered sound like Amapiano. Protect what’s yours, with this mentality we are far from exporting music! These are black children trying to eat, bro. Let them shine! If you don’t like it shut up and move on, don’t say anything negative to try and slow down the growth of a proudly South African genre.”  — Prince Kaybee, 


The genre has become a threat to many artists who are being phased away at their comfort zones by the popularity of Amapiano in the street. In an interview with    Mafikizolo were asked if they were threatened by the trendy Amapiano sound, which they responded affirmatively 

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