Living in Lavender Hill can be challenging but a group of five boys believe that through rap they can express themselves about “life in the ghetto” and inspire other youngsters to do the same as a coping mechanism against gangsterism.
They are called the Home Boyz and they write and rap their own songs and sample beats of other bands.
Kaydin Stuart and Khaseef Sachnary, in Grade 12, at Lavender Hill High School; Jamie Borens in Grade 10 at Lavender Hill High; Cole Kleintjies, in Grade 9 at Sibelius High; and Liam Sauls, in Grade 7 at Prince George Primary, teamed up when they were asked to perform at a talent show at Retreat civic centre last year.
That’s when their group took off. Kaydin, who writes and produces songs and raps, started writing about love and life in Lavender Hill.
Khaseef said they were convinced by Lavender Hill High School English teacher Ashiek Manie to perform at a Lavender Hill High School Valentine’s Day event.
“I asked them to go on stage on Valentine’s Day because I wanted them to send across a message on how to stay in school through their rap songs. Kaydin writes his own songs and he does very well academically too. I want to encouge him to write about looking after the school and not breaking it down and to take pride in this community,” said Mr Manie.
Last month they were invited to a fashion show hosted by the City of Cape Town’s Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP), also at the Retreat civic centre. “It was a red carpet theme and we were dressed as characters in Grease and later as James Bond.”
Kaydin’s mother Karen Stuart said the boys are spending their time wri-ting songs at their homes and do their own recordings. “These boys grew up without fathers and it is good to see they are choosing to do something with their lives.”
She said all they need is support to help them be successsful.
Khaseef said Ms Stuart is their biggest supporter and they would like to encourage other youngsters who are interested in rap to help uplift the new generation. “I would like to make rap my profession after I leave school,” he said.
Mr Manie said Lavender Hill has been focusing on teaching children to live by their slogan: Inspiring hope and excellence.
“They must believe in themselves first and be proud of who they are. If they sing about these things it will help put across that message to take pride in this community and school. By doing this we aim to prevent crime in this community.”
Mr Manie said there are many talented dancers, singers and sports people in Lavender Hill High and the Home Boyz are proving that “there is an alterna- tive to becoming a merchant by creating a brighter future with their talent.”