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Botswanas grandest jazz festival is back

Mango Groove is coming to Gaborone

The Hamptons jump and jive jazz festival team promises to pull all stops in this year’s show, and make March 28th the most memorable event in the capital city, Gaborone.

The second annual event would debut different styles of Jazz including Afro, Classic Jazz, Bebop, Ragtime, Hot, Cool, Swing, Vocalise and Mainstream classics in a beautiful, serene outdoor open-air setting at a venue yet to be announced.

The annual Hamptons Jazz Festival presents the opportunity for people to marvel and appreciate the many visitors who journey here to enjoy Jazz music at its best. This annual gathering has become more of a reunion, a celebration with friends, family, culture, music, and a way of life,” the Hampton team pointed out in their Facebook page.

The show that has been affectionately referred to as “Botswana’s Grandest Jazz event,” is yet to release its line up. However, it has revealed that Mango groove has confirmed its participation in the show.

Last year the likes of Bra Hugh Masekela, Freshly ground, Sharp Jazz 9, Tshepo Tshola, Nnunu, Shanti Lo, Kearoma Rantao and others were in the line up. The legendary trumpeter, bandleader, composer and singer Hugh Masekela or Bra Hugh as many like to call him, wowed Jazz revellers at Duma FM Grounds and the show turned out to be one of the unsurpassed memorable open door festivals in Gaborone.

The promoters once again promises jazz music lovers to be steeped in the relaxing ambiance of good music, great company, excellent wine, cocktails, champagne, cider and local beers too.

As part of the promotion and drive to empower locals and encourage them to own the show, the Hamptons team has brought on board a Motswana Akhutleng Mogami and her partner to play a saxophone.

More details are to follow as we are still completing all procedural paperwork with artists, and so far only one group has been confirmed to perform in March,” explained the show producer and founder, Debbie Smith.

Smith also known by her associates as “The wild child” is the founder of the Hamptons Annual Jazz Festival. She is a socialite wanting to get the best of both worlds between Gaborone, London and Dubai delivering good music. Debbie plays a crucial role in conceptualising, strategising and implementing the marketing strategies for the festival now branded as Botswana’s best Jazz event of the year.

She is a Motswana from Ramotswa who went to United Kingdom to study at Bournemouth University and ended up pursuing her passion in event organisation and marketing. Her analytical horsepower sets her apart from other promoters. She conducts the due diligence necessary to come up with the right artists and the right atmosphere that her Jazz fans will enjoy. She applies her international knowledge and expertise of producing and managing events.

In producing a well organised event, Debbie does not do it alone. She works with a teamthat incluse Neil Smith, a Marketing and Sales Management graduate from the UK and two events’promoters,  David Letshwiti fondly known as Fifty-two and Mandla also known as Mr Posh.

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6th December 2023

Even though Botswana has over the years been performing extremely poorly at the Miss World competition, the country has confirmed that it will be hosting the beauty festival in 2026. Initially, the country was to host Miss World next year, something it failed to confirm before deadline. Director at Miss Botswana, Benjamin Raletsatsi, says Botswana will be ready then to host all participants. Miss Botswana Top 25 finalists left the boot camp yesterday. Quite shocking though, Miss Botswana team is still failing basics as responding to media inquiries on time yet it is dangerously hoping to host an event of high status

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DJ Sway ‘saved’ the YAMAs

22nd November 2023

DJ Sway, the daring and ambitious on-air presenter of Yarona FM, played a crucial role in saving the radio station’s music awards, known as the YAMAs. The event was initially dry and disorganized, but DJ Sway, who co-hosted with Pearl Thusi, injected life into the show. However, things took a turn for the worse when Pearl Thusi abruptly left the stage, leaving DJ Sway to carry on alone. Despite the unexpected setback, DJ Sway rose to the occasion and captivated the audience, effectively putting an end to the drama caused by Pearl Thusi.

In an exclusive interview after the YAMAs, DJ Sway revealed the behind-the-scenes chaos that unfolded during the event. He acknowledged the script editors, Phalana and Hope, who worked tirelessly to reedit the script and adapt it to a one-host format. Despite the last-minute changes, DJ Sway remained composed and focused, thanks to the support of his colleagues, such as Owen Rampha, Katlego Rakola, Tshepang Motsisi (DJ Easy), and LB.

When asked about his initial reaction to the unexpected turn of events, DJ Sway admitted to feeling saddened by how things ended. However, he credited Pearl Thusi for giving him a much-needed confidence boost during his moment of doubt. She reminded him that he was destined for greatness and that he didn’t need big stars to succeed. With her words of encouragement, DJ Sway regained his composure and approached the rest of the show with the same professionalism and charisma he displays on the radio.

To overcome the challenges he faced, DJ Sway relied on his radio skills and calm personality. He engaged with the audience as if he were speaking to a single person, pointing out individuals in the crowd to create a more intimate connection. He also expressed gratitude for his backstage team, who provided support and ensured the smooth running of the show.

DJ Sway expressed satisfaction in being seen as the saving grace of the YAMAs. He believed that he fulfilled his role as a host and brought joy to the Yarona FM board, his family, and his fans. Despite his success, DJ Sway’s journey has not been without hardships. He has experienced the loss of his mother and sister, which has left a lasting impact on him. While he continues to grieve, he seeks solace in therapy sessions and relies on his father for emotional support.

DJ Sway’s dedication to his craft and ability to overcome adversity make him a remarkable figure in the radio industry. His vibrant personality and deep knowledge of music have made him a perfect fit for Yarona FM. Despite the challenges he has faced, DJ Sway remains determined to make a positive impact and bring joy to his listeners. With his talent and resilience, there is no doubt that DJ Sway will continue to thrive in his career and leave a lasting legacy in the world of radio.


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Chef Gustos walk of shame

22nd November 2023

Chef Gustos, the renowned hitmaker, recently experienced what can only be described as a walk of shame at the 8th edition of the Yarona FM Music Awards (YAMAs). Despite being nominated a whopping seven times, he failed to secure a single win. Ouch!

The night was filled with surprises, drama, and controversy, but the biggest winner of the evening was Han C, who walked away with three awards, including Best Pop and Best Male Single for his hit song, “Sebinki.” Han C graciously announced that he would be donating P10,000 from his winnings to his fellow nominees, promoting a spirit of togetherness among artists. What a noble gesture!

Meanwhile, Chef Gustos found himself on the losing end of several categories, including People’s Choice Artist of the Year, which he had won in the past. He seemed unfazed by the loss, stating, “People know that ‘Away’ was big, but they won’t stop me.” It’s clear that Chef Gustos is determined to continue making music, regardless of the awards he receives.

However, he did express his frustration with the outcome, suggesting that the awards may be corrupt. He declined to comment further, citing the need to protect his brand and maintain good relationships with corporate clients. It’s understandable that he wants to avoid any potential damage to his future prospects.

In fact, Chef Gustos went so far as to request that Yarona FM not nominate him for future YAMAs. It seems he wants to distance himself from the disappointment and focus on his music without the pressure of awards. Perhaps this decision will allow him to create freely and without the burden of expectations.

While Chef Gustos may have experienced a walk of shame at the YAMAs, it’s important to remember that awards do not define an artist’s talent or success. His fans still appreciate his music, and he continues to have gigs with corporate clients. So, despite the disappointment, Chef Gustos remains optimistic about his future in the industry.

In the end, the YAMAs may have been a letdown for Chef Gustos, but he’s determined to keep moving forward. He won’t let a lack of awards dampen his spirits or hinder his creativity. And who knows, maybe next time he’ll come back stronger and prove that he’s deserving of recognition. After all, the true measure of an artist’s success lies in the hearts of their fans, not in shiny trophies.


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