Ghettocracy Score: Silenced by power, amplified by the people, Winky D’s 20-year crusade 

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By Darlington Gatsi

“When I play this song back home in South Africa, they call me a politician. I do not know anything about politics. I am not a politician. All I sing and talk about is what is happening to me and the people around me.”

These are the words of the late legendary reggae artist, Lucky Dube, which continue to echo from his grave.

The words which Dube said at the height of South Africa’s apartheid rule have since morphed to take life of their own defining reggae and its offshoot Dancehall music.

These resonated with Dancehall maestro Winky D who has endured a grueling 2023 since he released the Eureka Eureka album early this year.

The album carries songs that contain social commentary lyrics castigating ills that are permeating society.

This rattled the ruling elites who took every turn to stifle the dreadlocked muso disrupting some of his shows.

Just like many of his projects such as The Devotee, Eureka Eureka resonates with the lower class and the downtrodden who are enduring the shackles of poverty.

“Dzimba dzemabwe” brings out the failure of leadership in the society which has seen young girls being married off.

Ibotso castigates corruption and unfettered greed of the rich at the expense of the poor.

Just like Lucky Dube under the apartheid regime, Winky D was ostracised with state media censoring his music which is deemed political.

In his musical career, Winky D has borne the brunt of carrying the political tag with his songs construed as being aligned with politics.

Speaking in an interview online Winky D repeated the famous 1990 words of Dube.

“That is social commentary at its best according to Winky D. I know people might interpret things in different ways but that is beyond my control,” the Gaffa said.

Gombwe, as Winky D is known for his lyrical flow and ability to churn unique songs, will Sunday stand on the threshold of history as he celebrates 20 years in the music industry.

He will cap a torrid year with the much-anticipated concert at the HICC in what has become his tradition of ushering in a new year.

Ghettocracy Score, Winky D will look at how society’s struggles have shaped his music creating what he has termed “ghettocraft”.

Despite his struggles with those in power, Winky D has endeared himself with the lower class through his music which speaks of their daily challenges.