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A fresh hip hop crew has emerged in the Mother City.
Performing under the name Purple Hearts, the youthful trio could easily be one of Cape Town’s most interesting rap outfits. Although they started out a few months ago, they have already bagged a lucrative recording deal and recorded a series of high quality tracks and music videos. But perhaps the most captivating thing about Purple Hearts, formerly known as PH, is the inclusion of JP Enslin aka Jay Million, a young white emcee, who has got all his fingers on the pulse of hip hop culture.
Together with Lukho Paka aka G.I. Nosko and Congolese record producer Alex Kasongo aka LX, the act is promising to make lasting contributions on the local hip hop industry. 22-year old Paka, who is a born-again Christian, says that the trio’s main aim is to change the face of local hip hop through Christianity. “When I gave my life to Christ, I found myself not being able to gel with Hip Hop because of the profanity, explicit language and the constant references to alcohol, sex and drugs. I started thinking about how many other people were in the same boat, and decided to do something about it,” explains Lukho.
The innovative MC notes that some fans love hip hop but get turned away by its lyrics. He says that although they do not compose gospel songs, their music is “clean” and brings out the brighter side of the genre. “A Purple Heart is a US army medal awarded to a soldier and its tag line says ‘Bravery in the line of fire’. So as Christians in the game we believe that bravery in the line of fire is exactly what we will need to stay focused and succeed.”
Highly prolific, Lukho and his crew have recorded a new song almost every week in the past twelve months. They have also released numerous mixtapes, attracting a decent following in the Mother City. A recording deal with newly-established record company JMR Records will allow them to release their debut album later this year.
In addition to recording hits, the crew has performed at all kinds of events, from small parties to sold-out concerts. “Performing live is our strongest point, and we all enjoy it immensely. When you are in studio you can only imagine the people your music will touch, but when you perform live they’re right there in the moment with you – it’s an indescribable feeling,” adds Lukho.
Push play to watch one of their best videos, ‘Imagination’.