25 most famous South African musicians in 2023: top greatest artists

25 most famous South African musicians in 2023: top greatest artists

There are numerous South African musicians in 2023 because the music industry has grown tremendously over the last decade. Among them are young and more seasoned artists who have been in the industry for decades. The most famous music artists are known for releasing quality and catchy music.

South African musicians
South African musicians. Photo: @djmaphorisa, @ami_faku, @djtira, @sunelmusician (modified by author)
Source: UGC

Making it in the music industry requires talent, hard work, patience, and good production. The most famous South African musicians in 2023 have hit songs to their names. They have consistently released quality, entertaining, and catchy tunes.

Most famous South African musicians in 2023

The most famous South African singers and rappers are passionate about music. They invest time, money, and labour into their craft. Discover the most famous South African musicians in 2023 today.

25. Seether

  • Members: Shaun Morgan, Dale Stewart, John Humphrey, and Corey Lowery
  • Years active: 1999–present
  • Origin: Pretoria
  • Genre: Rock

Seether is one of the most famous South African bands today. Shaun Morgan, Dale Stewart, John Humphrey, and Corey Lowery are its members. They founded the band in 1999 in Pretoria, Gauteng and play rock music.

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Until 2002, the band was known as Saron Gas. Broken, Fake It, Fine Again, and Driven Under are some of the band's most popular tunes.

24. Yvonne Chaka Chaka

South African musicians
Yvonne Chaka Chaka at the Nescafe Ricoffy 50th birthday celebration at Hallmark House in Johannesburg, South Africa. Photo: Oupa Bopape/Gallo Images via Getty Images
Source: Getty Images
  • Full name: Yvonne Chaka Chaka
  • Date of birth: 18th March 1965
  • Age: 58 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Dobsonville, Soweto

Yvonne Chaka Chaka is one of the globally recognised South African music legends. Besides writing and singing songs, she is an actress, entrepreneur, humanitarian, and teacher.

She was nicknamed the Princess of Africa because of her good music. Her hit tracks include Umqombothi, I'm In Love with a DJ, and Thank You Mr. DJ.

23. Johnny Clegg

south african music legends
Johnny Clegg performs on stage at the "46664 Arctic" concert at Fyllingen in Tromso, Norway. Photo: Dave Hogan/Getty Images
Source: Getty Images
  • Full name: Jonathan Paul Clegg
  • Date of birth: 7th June 1953
  • Date of death: 16th July 2019
  • Age at death: 66 years

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The late Johnny Clegg is one of the most famous White South African musicians of all time. He was also a dancer, anthropologist, and anti-apartheid activist. He founded the band Savuka, and also recorded as a solo artist. Some of his hit tracks are Asimbonanga, Dela, and Great Heart.

22. Sun-El Musician

South African musicians
Sun-El Musician on the decks. Photo: @sunelmusician (modified by author)
Source: UGC
  • Full name: Sanele Tresure Sithole
  • Date of birth: 28th March 1989
  • Age: 34 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Mooi River

Ubomi Abumanga, Akanamali, Sonini, Higher, and Uhuru are some of Sun-El Musician's hit tracks. Sun-El Musician is a disc jockey, music producer, and songwriter. He is one of the artists associated with the Amapiano genre.

21. Snot Kop

  • Full name: Francois Henning
  • Date of birth: 22nd December 1974
  • Age: 48 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Zimbabwe

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Francois Henning, alias Snot Kop, is a singer and rapper of Afrikaans. He was formerly known as Lekgoa. Some of his hit tunes are Cool Soos Koos Kombuis, Song Vir My Dad, Pens En Pootjies, and Dropit Soos 'n Disprin.

20. Nomcebo Zikode

south african music artists
Nomcebo Zikode (C) accepts the award for Best Global Music Performance during the pre-telecast show of the 65th Annual Grammy Awards at the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles. Photo: Valerie Macon/AFP
Source: Getty Images
  • Full name: Nomcebo Nothule Zikode
  • Date of birth: 28th October 1985
  • Age: 37 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Mpumalanga

Nomcebo Zikode is one of the most famous female South African music artists in 2023. Her hit tracks include Xola Moya Wam', Bayabuza, Njabulo, Ngiyesaba, and Bayethe. She also collaborated with DJ Ganyani on their hit single Emazulwini.

19. Semi Tee

  • Full name: Tumelo Ramila
  • Year of birth: 6th April 1999
  • Age: 24 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Orlando West, Soweto

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Tumelo Ramila, alias Semi Tee, is an Amapiano all-rounder who sings, produces, and DJs. He is known for his collaboration with Kammu Dee and Miano on the hit single Ama Uber. He started performing at the age of sixteen.

18. Vigro Deep

Who is the best African singer of all time?
Virgo Deep posing for the camera in the studio and outdoors. Photo: @vigrodeep_za (modified by author)
Source: UGC
  • Full name: Kamogelo Phetla
  • Date of birth: 6th September 2001
  • Age: 21 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Atteridgeville, Pretoria

Vigro Deep is one of the young South African musicians today. He is a DJ and record producer. He has grown popular for his viral productions and counts of tours. His hit tracks include Untold Stories, Africa Rise, Ghost Producer, International, and Piano King.

17. Focalistic

  • Full name: Lethabo Sebetso
  • Date of birth: 26th May 1996
  • Age: 27 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Pretoria

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Lethabo Sebetso, alias Focalistic, is a famous rapper who rose to prominence after releasing the remix of Ke Star featuring Davido and Virgo Deep. He has also sung Champion Sound, Tabela Hape, Pele Pele, 16 Days No Sleep, and Tsela Tse Nyane. He is also known as President ya Straata.

16. Die Antwoord

Who is the best African singer of all time?
Yo-Landi Visser and Ninja of the South African band Die Antwoord pose in Cape Town, South Africa. Photo: Foto24/Gallo Images/Getty Images
Source: Getty Images
  • Members: Watkin Tudor "Ninja" Jones and Anri "Yolandi Visser" du Toit
  • Years active: 2008 to present
  • Origin: Cape Town
  • Genre: Hip-hop

Die Antwoord is a duo made up of Ninja and Yolandi Visser. Their producers are HITEK5000 and Lil2Hood. The alternative hip-hop group's hit tracks include Baby's on Fire, Ugly Boy, Banana Brain, Pitbull Terrier, and Enter the Ninja.

15. DJ Tira

Who is the most famous singer in South Africa?
DJ Tira posing for pictures in colourful outfits. Photo: @djtira (modified by author)
Source: UGC
  • Full name: Mthokozisi Khathi
  • Date of birth: 24th August 1976
  • Age: 46 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: KwaZulu-Natal

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Mthokozisi Khathi, alias DJ Tira, is a DJ, record producer, and Kwaito artist. His hit tracks include Sikilidi, Ngilimele, Malume, Won't Let Go, Nguwe, and Uyangifaka. He helped popularise the Gqom music genre.

14. Blaq Diamond

  • Members: Ndumiso Mdletshe and Sphelele Dunywa
  • Years active: 2010 to present
  • Origin: Ladysmith, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Genre: Afro-pop

Blaq Diamond is an Afro-pop duo. Its members are Ndumiso Mdletshe and Sphelele Dunywa from Ladysmith, KwaZulu-Natal. The two met in 2010 on a school trip. They participated in a music cypher on the school bus. Their hit tunes include Qoma, Ibhanoyi, Summer YoMuthi, and Isoka.

13. Ami Faku

south african r&b artists
Ami Faku posing for pictures outdoors. Photo: @ami_faku (modified by author)
Source: UGC
  • Full name: Amanda Faku
  • Date of birth: 28th May 1993
  • Age: 30 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Gqeberha

Ami Faku is one of the top South African R&B artists. She is a singer, performer and songwriter. Fatela, Abalele, Into Ingawe, Asibe Happy, Uwrongo, and Ubuhle Bakho are some of her hit tracks. She rose to fame as a contestant on the second season of The Voice SA.

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12. Elaine

  • Full name: Ndivhuwo Elaine Mukheli
  • Date of birth: 2nd April 1999
  • Age: 24 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Pretoria

Elaine Mukheli is an R&B singer and songwriter known for You're the One, Loving You, Risky, Right Now, I Just Wanna Know, and Changes. In September 2019, she self-released her debut EP called Elements.

11. Prince Kaybee

Who is the most famous singer in South Africa?
Prince Kaybee posing for selfies in black t-shirts. Photo: @princekaybee_sa (modified by author)
Source: UGC
  • Full name: Kabelo Motsamai
  • Date of birth: 15th June 1989
  • Age: 34 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Senekal

Kabelo Motsamai, alias Prince Kaybee, is a disc jockey, record producer, and recording artist. He is known for his hit songs Yonkinto, Wajellwa, and Friend Zone. He has performed on major stages locally and internationally with top artists.

10. Kwesta

  • Full name: Senzo Brikka Vilakazi
  • Date of birth: 11th August 1988
  • Age: 34 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Katlehong

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Musician Senzo Brikka Vilakazi, professionally known as Kwesta, is known for hit tracks such as Ngud', Huzet, Ngiyaz'fela Ngawe, Khethile Khethile, and Mayibabo. At 15, he and his friends formed a rap group Ghetto Fellaz which then changed to The Juvenylz.

9. Mafikizolo

south african bands
Mafikizolo duo attend the African National Congress (ANC) Siyanqoba countdown to victory rally at the Market Theatre in Johannesburg, South Africa. Photo: Frennie Shivambu/Gallo Images
Source: Getty Images
  • Members: Theo Kgosinkwe and Nhlanhla Nciza
  • Years active: 1996 to present
  • Origin: Kagiso
  • Genre: Afro-pop

Mafikizolo is an Afro-pop duo made of Theo Kgosinkwe and Nhlanhla Nciza. The duo rose to fame after they released Ndihamba Nawe kuphela, Kwela Kwela, Sibongile, and Udakwa Njalo. They released their self-titled album in 1997 and Music Revolution in 1999.

8. Shekhinah

South African musicians
Singer Shekhinah performs during the official Welcome Dinner of the Mandela 100 Global Citizen Festival at the Sandton Convention Centre in Sandton, South Africa. Photo: Frennie Shivambu/Gallo Images
Source: Getty Images
  • Full name: Shekhinah Thandi Donnell
  • Date of birth: 2nd October 1994
  • Age: 28 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Pietermaritzburg

Shekhinah Thandi Donnell is a Pop/R&B vocalist and songwriter. She rose to fame after competing in the seventh season of South Africa’s hit television show, IDOLS. In 2017, she released her debut album, Rosegold.

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7. Cassper Nyovest

south african music artists
Cassper Nyovest attends the funeral service of DJ Sumbody at Apel Fourways Cross in Ga-Masemola, South Africa. Photo: Morapedi Mashashe/Daily Sun/Gallo Images via Getty Images
Source: Instagram
  • Full name: Refiloe Maele Phoolo
  • Date of birth: 16th December 1990
  • Age: 32 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Mahikeng

Refiloe Maele Phoolo, alias Cassper Nyovest, is among the internationally famous South African musicians. He is a rapper, songwriter, entrepreneur, record producer, and amateur boxer. He is regarded as one of the most successful artists in the country.

6. AKA

south african singers
Rapper AKA posing for the camera. Photo: @akaworldwide (modified by author)
Source: UGC
  • Full name: Kiernan Jarryd Forbes
  • Date of birth: 28th January 1988
  • Date of death: 10th February 2023
  • Age at death: 35 years
  • Place of birth: Cape Town

Kiernan Jarryd Forbes, alias AKA, was a respected rapper, record producer, and businessman. He gained prominence after releasing his single Victory Lap. He was shot to death on 10th February 2023, and his fourth album, Mass Country, was released posthumously by Sony.

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5. Kabza De Small

  • Full name: Kabelo Petrus Motha
  • Date of birth: 27th November 1992
  • Age: 30 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Mpumalanga

Kabelo Petrus Motha, professionally known as Kabza De Small, is a major figure in the Amapiano genre of house music. He is known for Woza, Ebusuku, Asibe Happy, Khusela, Abalele, and Xola.

4. DJ Black Coffee

south african singers
DJ Black Coffee poses with the award for Best Dance/Electronic Music Album in the press room during the 64th Annual Grammy Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Photo: Patrick T. Fallon/AFP
Source: Getty Images
  • Full name: Nkosinathi Innocent Maphumulo
  • Date of birth: 11th March 1976
  • Age: 47 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Umlazi

Nkosinathi Innocent Maphumulo is DJ Black Coffee's real name. He is a DJ, record producer, and songwriter. He established his own record label called Soulistic Music and released his eponymous album, Black Coffee.

3. DJ Maphorisa

South African musicians
DJ Maphorisa posing for the camera. Photo: @djmaphorisa (modified by author)
Source: UGC
  • Full name: Themba Sekowe
  • Date of birth: 15th November 1987
  • Age: 35 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Soshanguve

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Themba Sekowe, known professionally as DJ Maphorisa, is a DJ, record producer, singer, and songwriter. Some of his hit tracks are Ba Straata, Shona Kwelanga, Abalele, Izolo, and Banyana.

2. Nasty C

  • Full name: Nsikayesizwe David Junior Ngcobo
  • Date of birth: 11th February 1997
  • Age: 26 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Diepmeadow

Nasty C's real name is Nsikayesizwe David Junior Ngcobo. He is a famous rapper, songwriter, and record producer known for Lemons, Philo, Said, SMA, and All In. He started rapping at nine.

1. Master KG

Who is the most famous singer in South Africa?
Master KG at the Nescafe Ricoffy 50th birthday celebration at Hallmark House in Johannesburg, South Africa. Photo: Oupa Bopape/Gallo Images via Getty Images
Source: Getty Images
  • Full name: Kgaogelo Moagi
  • Date of birth: 31st January 1996
  • Age: 27 years (as of 2023)
  • Place of birth: Tzaneen

Kgaogelo Moagi, alias Master KG, is a famous musician and record producer. Skeleton Move, his debut studio album, achieved acclaim including an AFRIMA Award for Best Artist/Group in the African Electro category.

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Recap of the most famous South African musicians in 2023

RankName
1Master KG
2Nasty C
3DJ Maphorisa
4DJ Black Coffee
5Kabza De Small
6AKA
7Cassper Nyovest
8Shekhinah
9Mafikizolo
10Kwesta
11 Prince Kaybee
12Elaine
13Ami Faku
14Blaq Diamond
15DJ Tira
16Die Antwoord
17Focalistic
18Vigro Deep
19Semi Tee
20Nomcebo Zikode
21Snot Kop
22Sun-El Musician
23Johnny Clegg
24Yvonne Chaka Chaka
25Seether

Most famous South African musicians
Photo: canva.com (modified by author)
Source: UGC

Who is the most famous singer in South Africa?

Master KG is arguably the most famous singer in South Africa in 2023. Others are Nasty C, DJ Maphorisa, AKA, Kabza De Small, Cassper Nyovest, Mafikizolo, and Shekhinah.

Who is the best African singer of all time?

Sade, Miriam Makeba, Fela Kuti, Burna Boy, Youssou N'Dour, and Simon Nkabinde are among the best African singers of all time.

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Many South African musicians are successful on the national and international front. They are known and respected for writing, creating, and releasing high-quality music.

Briefly.co.za recently published the richest artists in South Africa in 2023 and their net worth. Music is one of the highest-paying creative arts in the world.

Musicians' largest portion of revenue comes from live shows. Many artists capitalise on their fame by venturing into business and signing multi-million-dollar brand endorsement deals.

Source: Briefly News

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