On his first album, the Stellenbosch-based artist sought to distance himself from the pack. His skillset betrayed his age; at 21 years young, eyes fixed upon an uncertain future, he released the self-produced Coming of Age EP (2015).
“I wanted to give a glimpse into the mind of a 20 year-old turning 21, measuring himself against the world and learning what it is to be a man while making your own destiny,” he says of it.
Coming of Age showcased his ability to employ words, rhythm and melody to “tell people about themselves, while using myself as a mirror.”
Among the many publications he’s been included in are Complex Magazine and Pigeon and Planes. The latter in a list titled Beyond America: Exploring Rap Around the World. Sipho the Gift’s a gifted producer who’s amassed production credits on music by the likes of Well$, Deniro Ferrar, and King Mez, who featured prominently on Dr. Dre’s Compton album.
Sipho the Gift returned with Kintsugi two years later. He found in the Japanese word a source of strength and a sharpened focus. The EP is “rich with harmonies and melodies, laying a thick blanket of orchestration over the pounding drums,” as one writer put it.
That’s what makes him a dope, true school emcee: Sipho the Gift refuses to compromise. He won’t play by the rules!