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Lockdown strangles Q-Real’s dream

’MAPALO NKHELOANE

MASERU – Local hip hop artiste Q-Real has postponed the release of his album due to the coronavirus-induced national lockdown. Dubbed ‘Matsieng’s Finest’, the album was scheduled to be released in May before the global crisis came and scuttled the plans. Apart from having to put his album’s release on hold, Q-Real has had his lined up bookings cancelled – a major blow to his budding career.

The pandemic and the lockdown continue to be a major threat to the entertainment industry which depends largely on mass gatherings for income generation. “COVID-19, especially the lockdown strategy, has put everything on hold. My time for growth has been put on hold as an artiste. “You know we grow everyday so staying at home for more than three weeks, is a lot of time lost. Well, I agree it was worth from a health and safety point of view but the disadvantages are also huge,” Q-Real laments.

But he also acknowledges postponing the release date was a wise move considering the current state of the economy. He could not just release the album since that would mean he sweated for nothing. “People are stuck at home, broke, the very same people we expect to support our craft. The saddest part is that it is obvious people will still be struggling a lot financially even when they come out of this lockdown. “It is going to take them a while to recover and get back on their feet so I have to be patient with the release of the album lest I run a loss,” he says.

Q-Real says he had hoped to make it a 10-song album but now that there is still more time before he drops it, there are more possibilities. He might feel the need to go further but he would not exceed 15-track album, he adds, further stating the album is his second project after the one he dropped in 2018. The difference between the two, he says, is that the recent one is more exciting since he has grown a lot as an artiste over the past two years or so.

“I have learnt a lot of things and all those are reflected in this project. I am planning to make it go big with some aggressive marketing approach because I feel it deserves to reach almost all the corners of the country. “It has the content that deserves to be heard and I am going to do everything in my power to ensure that it does reach them. God knows I cannot wait to drop it but I have to be realistic with the situation and hold it up for some time,” he says.

Born Sekonyela Qaitsane Sekonyela, Q-Real comes from Ha Tsilo, Matsieng so he represents the hood hence he calls himself “Matsiengsfinest”. He believes he represents Matsieng and always makes sure he raises the flag high so that its youth can be proud of him and know that they too can become whatever they want to be. He therefore says the album ‘Matsiengfinest’ is dedicated to where he comes from.

The much anticipated album touches on issues in everyday life such as love, struggle, success, big dreams, and faith. Matsieng finest started his music journey back in 2017 but says his passion for music had started way back. A journalist by training, he runs a budding clothing line under the name AG Clothing which was established in 2017.

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