Entertainment / Celebs And Viral

Nandipha Pantsi
3 minute read
19 Mar 2014
7:00 am

Challenges don’t scare Just Nativ

Nandipha Pantsi

Being a newcomer in the music industry is not for the faint-hearted.

Just Nativ. Picture: Supplied

In a world where everyone thinks they could be the next big thing, it can be difficult to separate the dreamers from the performers with talent and passion. This is something Just Nativ knows all too well.

“Before I got signed, I was sending my demo to every single recording company and radio station I could think of, and for years I didn’t get any responses,” he says.

“There are so many people who want to join the music industry, but the truth is, no matter how talented or passionate you are, if you don’t persevere, you won’t get anywhere.”

Just Nativ’s perseverance finally paid off when DJ Game got a hold of his demo album last year.

“He liked my beats and vocals and spent time working with me and remixing some of my tracks. He was mostly impressed by a remix I had done of Mi Casa’s music.”

Within months, Just Nativ became one of Soul Candi’s recruits and is featured in a album titled Producers Series Volume 1, along with other up-and-coming producers. Just Nativ’s urban house sound combined with great vocals was a perfect match for the label, which is known for producing some of the best soulful dance music in the country.

His first single Crazy Love, which features Thandi Draai, was included in the compilation album Soul Candi Sessions 2014, which reached platinum status, and his second single Never Give Up was featured on the YFM Hot 99 chart for nine weeks.

Like many musicians, Just Nativ’s love for music developed while he was a child.

Growing up in the small town of Bronkhortspruit east of Pretoria, he spent most of his childhood playing music in his church. This is where he learnt musical fundamentals.

The shift from choral music to dance came naturally when he started experimenting with music-making software while studying Information Technology at university. During this time the young DJ worked on beats and melodies almost every day and started involving other artists, encouraging vocalists to write lyrics for his beats.

Drawing inspiration from the likes of DJ Black Coffee and Lulo Cafe, Just Nativ wants to create dance music of an international standard that still resonates with local audiences. Great vocals from the likes of Zonke and Mi Casa’s J Something, whom he hopes to collaborate with some time, also has a great influence on his work. But his biggest inspiration is someone a lot closer to him, he says. Having recently tied the knot with his long-term girlfriend, Just Nativ says the love he shares with his wife comes through in his music.

Just Nativ. Picture: Supplied

Just Nativ. Picture: Supplied

“I call my wife my editor,” he says with a smile.

“She’s the first to listen to my work and if she doesn’t like it, I change it right away. I’m also in a very happy place in my life right now, this is why a lot of the music I’m producing is about love and hope.”

While still new to the entertainment industry, Just Nativ isn’t naive about the many challenges his relationship could face with a job that will require him to travel frequently.

“I’m a huge believer in family. My wife understands that this is a tough industry and I’m very happy to have her support.”

While Just Nativ is steadily making a name for himself in the music industry, he still finds it hard to believe that he could be “running with the big dogs” of house music.

“I still gasp a bit when I walk into the studio and see Euphonik or the Mi Casa guys chilling there,” he says with a laugh.

“I look up to these guys, so being in an environment which allows me to be able to interact with such big artists inspires me to work even harder.”