Basil Mongezi Giwu – Owner of Soul n Shades Records

We are excited for you to meet Basil Mongezi Giwu, known as DJ Basil, a record owner and producer.

As you know, here at SYH, we are inspired by men and women that go all out for what they are passionate about, we are inspired by their hustle and the spirit of perseverance, and DJ Basil’s journey is one that you will learn from.

Learn how he got his hustle together to birth soul n shades Records.


Who is Basil Mongezi Giwu – tell us about the entrepreneur in you.                                                       

I am a record label owner called soul n shades Records, a versatile dj/producer and I play soulful house; deep house and the new dance genre called Amapiano. I regard myself as an entrepreneur because for me this is a craft – the kind that requires serious investment in terms of time and ideas.

People consume what we dish whether it is what we borrow from other practitioners of the craft or that which we produce ourselves.


When did it all start – how did the idea of basil as dj/producer come about?

It started at an early age where I fell in love with house music. I started listening to house compilations and internationally produced sounds, then in 2005 I decided to start practicing with vinyl’s, then in 2006 I was dubbed an upcoming DJ.


From the time that you decided to pursue this business what challenges have you faced?

As a young man from the township funds were a challenge. I did not have a CD pouch, headphones and computer where I could store and write my CDs.

Transportation is a major challenge because one is unable to attend to gigs.

On the other hand, getting paid for work done became another thorny issue with owners of establishments we played in.


How did you overcome them?     

For one, saving the little you make in gigs was the first step. The second part was to make arrangements for payment to be made upfront. The issue of mobility is partly addressed by modern transport services as provided for by Uber and Taxify. One also benefits from the generosity of friends with cars.


How do you through your times what keeps you motivated?  

One of the things that keep me motivated is my passion for music. I draw much of my inspiration from positive mentors, major music industry players and the drive to improve myself and contribute to the betterment of the lives of others.


How old is your business/hustle and what are you most proud of so far?

My business is almost 10 years this year. I am proud to have my own record label called soul n shades Records and having my own studio.


How are you marketing your business now and what has worked for you so far?

I started marketing my business through social media. The age old word of mouth plays an important role in the marketing. One gets gigs through referrals because someone would have mentioned your name or they would have heard you play.


If you were not a doing music would you have followed a traditional career and be locked in a 9 to 5 job, if yes what would it be?

I would be a cricket player I used to play in the township when I was younger.


What is the advice that you would give someone who is starting a business in 2018?

Networking patience and communication play a big role in the industry


What can we expect from soul n shades Records in 2018 and beyond?

This year we will be dropping singles from the label, then next year the plan is to drop an album


How can people find you online?

Facebook: basil soulnshades giwu

twitter: @basilsoulnshades

Instagram: @basil giwu soulnshades

Email: basil.giwu50@gmail.Com


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