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Jaak Portrait

Jaak is Afrikaans. Jaak was born and bred in the home of Afrikaans. In the town where Afrikaans got official recognition as a respectable language – Paarl. The place where the Taalmonument stands erect on Paarl Mountain like a big, fat middle finger, telling the world, “Up yours! Afrikaans represent!”

In this town of extremely divided human ideologies, Jaak was destined to become one of the most free-thinking artists in Afrikaans Hip Hop. Growing up on the ‘wrong’ side of the Berg River, in the projects of Paarl East, Jaak was quick to realise the huge discrepancies in Paarl’s social structure.

Using Hip Hop as a vehicle of truth and social justice, Jaak found his identity through the art form. He also found a way to voice the concerns of his people – not just the people from Paarl but all overlooked ‘brown’ people of South Africa.

Being part of an overlooked section of the population has given Jaak the time and space to train and educate himself about the true nature of Hip Hop. An avid collector of The Source Magazine since before the ‘Golden Era’, Jaak is a true Hip Hop scholar and strives to understand the core essence, which he believes is Knowledge of Self.

Jaak has always been disgusted with the sentiment in South Africa that brown people have no culture. He has taken it upon himself to put the magnifying glass to his people, past and present, to show the world (brown people included), that the culture of brown people is vibrant, creative and highly influential on South African society as a whole. Jaak feels compelled to stake this claim through his music.

Jaak combines a liberating approach to his musical concepts with lyrics from all Afrikaans dialects, idiolects and the sampling of Afrikaans classics, to form the sound bed for his lyrical gymnastics. With Jaak, you are truly set for an Afrikaans overdose and a real culture shock to the system.

Jaak signed to Pioneer Unit Records in 2009. He featured on the 2007 compilation, Planetary Assault. He released his first solo album, Flêtse Maniere in 2009. Jaak also featured as ‘gangsta rapper’ character, Jaak Paarl, on Die Antwoord’s debut album, $0$. In 2013 Jaak featured on ‘Cape Town Effects’, a collaborative album which included multiple European tours, a documentary (‘Mother City Blues’) and a photo exhibition. In 2013 Jaak was also featured on the BBC’s ‘Africa Beats’.

Jaak will be releasing his second album, ‘Galant’, in mid-2014.


Cape Town Effects
Flêtse Maniere
Planetary Assault


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