DANCEHALL and Reggae artiste, Sensi Rankings, has bemoaned the reluctance of local promoters to engage artistes in his genre, saying they are only taken seriously in other countries where they get booked for shows.
Sensi Rankings’ comments come in the wake of his scheduled appearance at the Africa Unite Reggae Family Concert which will be held on Saturday at the Ben Marais Hall in Rustenburg, South Africa.
He is expected to share the stage with popular acts such as Malawians, Gemini Major and Lucius Banda, Zimbabweans, Buffalo Souljah and Winky D as well as South Africans that include Sanchez Africa, Tidal Waves, Fanta Jozi, Bongo Riot, L Tidute, Don Franco, Don Royal, Empress Pro, Empress Supreme, Naffy Dread, Don & Greg, Dj Nyati, DJ Toto, Blazah I, Thuli Thulz & Larry T, One Love Movement, Lavado, Gazavin, Lawgkal, Jah B, Blakka Yut, Ras Iyets and Wiseman.
The Africa Unite Reggae Family Concert, which is being held for the second time, is organised by Bantu Media SA in Association with Powertainment Reggae Sound and Rastafari United Front to cater for Dancehall and Reggae lovers.
Speaking to the Weekender this week, Rankings said that he looked forward to picking from where he left off while residing in South Africa in 2010.
“While in Johannesburg back then, I worked with artistes such as Mapaputsi, Jah Seed and Junior from Boom Shaka but I could not establish myself due to the fact that I did not have South African identity documents,” Rankings said, adding he decided to return home in 2014.
“I had already made a name for myself so this booking will afford me the opportunity to show people that that I am better than before.
“As Lesotho artistes, we get overwhelmed when booked in other countries because those promoters treat us like any other professional artiste on the line-up. This is something I cannot say about those who host events here at home as they only start appreciating us once they realise we are recognised elsewhere.”
The 32-year-old musician joined the music industry in 2005 as a gospel singer under Yadah Praise Family which he left in 2007. In 2008 he enrolled in a two year vocals and percussions programme at Creare International Arts School in Bloemfontein, South Africa before moving to Johannesburg to seek greener pastures.
He opened the stage for Sizzla at 4Fordy in September 2015 and it is said the Jamaican star was so impressed with him that he wanted to sign him.
However, the deal never materialised, reportedly due to miscommunication with Sizzla’s agents who are based in South Africa.
He said international events such as the Saturday show provided a perfect platform “to foster working relations with artistes from other countries so I am going to give the performance my all as someone may fall in love with my craft and collaborate with me”.
“I am mostly looking forward to meeting Gemini Major because I like the way he presents his sound and on top of that he is also a producer and I am keeping my fingers crossed that something will come up,” he said.