Epic Records Signs South African Rap Phenom Sho Madjozi (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety Staff

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Epic Records has signed South African rap sensation Sho Madjozi. The critically lauded artist first came on the scene in 2017 garnering instant attention for her unique delivery of Xitsonga lyrics and colorful fashion that mixes traditional African dress with modern flourishes. Nominated for best new international artist on Sunday’s BET Awards for the second time in as many years (she won in 2019), her songs “John Cena” and “Huku” have each logged over a million streams on Spotify, bringing her to the attention of Beyonce and Ed Sheeran, with whom she shared a stage at the 2019 Global Citizen Festival.

In developing Sho Madjozi, Epic, headed by chairman/CEO Sylvia Rhone, will collaborate with Sony Music Entertainment Africa (SMEA). “We’re working at a special company at a special time and we couldn’t be prouder than we are of our local star Sho and our big sister Sylvia for partnering to make this happen,” said Sean Watson, managing director of SMEA.

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Added Rhone: “African artists are enjoying an unprecedented level of visibility in music and Sho Madjozi is beautifully waving the flag for South Africa.  She’s bold, brilliant and remarkably talented and her music embodies all that is special about her homeland.  We’re honored to have her as the newest member of the Epic family.”

Among her appearances in the U.S., Sho created a viral moment when she met actor and WWE legend John Cena, the namesake of her song, on “The Kelly Clarkson Show” in November 2019.

Madjozi is booked by UTA in North America and Paradigm worldwide.

Watch the official video for “Kona,” which dropped in December.

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