Apple Music today announced South African DJ duo, Venom & Shishiliza is the latest featured artist in its Africa Rising artist development program. “It is a huge honour to be selected as one of Apple Music’s Africa Rising artists. We are extremely grateful to be recognised on this platform and we look forward to reaching new markets through the programme,’ they tell Apple Music.
Having established themselves as figureheads in their respective fields, Venom and Shishiliza met almost a decade ago while Shishiliza was working as an A&R representative for record label Family Tree, and Venom DJed for one of the label’s artists. Their sound developed organically the more time they spent together, anchored in the influence of their close friend and rapper, Riky Rick, and they quickly signed to Sony Music for their first single release.
Their debut single “Sho Boy” (2021) featuring Riky Rick, Blxckie, Focalistic, Yanga Chief, 25K & Beast fused amapiano beats with elements of hip hop, and served as a solid introduction to the different sounds that Venom & Shishiliza would eventually explore.
Their debut album LOVE IS PAIN (2022), available to stream on Apple Music in Spatial Audio now, is a tribute to the late great, Riky Rick, while also shining a light on the next wave of SA talent. Born out of a songwriting camp that helped them pinpoint their sound and identify the producers who understood their vision, this album is a collection of 13 tender love songs, spearheaded by mammoth single “Sondela” and newly released track “Vuka”.
The latest music from Venom & Shishiliza along with that of Africa’s hottest new artists, is available now on the Apple Music Africa Rising Playlist.
Apple Music’s Africa Rising, is an exclusive artist development programme and companion playlist geared towards identifying, showcasing and elevating rising talent and introducing the next generation of African superstars. Africa Rising alumni to date include: Omah Lay, Manu Worldstar, Tems, Amaarae, Ayra Starr, Yaw Tog, Blxckie, Nikita Kering, Buju, FAVE, Nomfundo Moh, Victony and Gyakie. Africa Rising sees Apple Music select six artists every year who each receive a minimum of two months of editorial support across the Apple Music platform including a launch interview with Nadeska on Apple Music 1. Nadeska has also launched a new weekly Africa Rising feature on her show highlighting the hottest new artists on the continent.
Africa Rising is the latest of many Apple Music initiatives aimed at taking African talent to the world. Now available in 33 countries across Sub-Saharan Africa, Apple Music 1 is home to Africa Now Radio with host Dadaboy Ehiz which has featured interviews with some of the continent’s hottest artists such as Falz, Ruger, Mlindo The Vocalist, Simi, Gyakie, Prince Kaybee, Omah Lay, Naira Marley, Fireboy DML, M.I. Abaga, King Promise and BNXN aka Buju.
Apple Music also selected Nigerian Afrobeats singer-songwriter Tems as its Up Next artist in 2021, Nigerian Afropop star Rema in 2020, Grammy Award-winning Afrofusion superstar Burna Boy in 2019, and Nigerian singer and entrepreneur Mr Eazi as the first recipient in 2017. Up Next is Apple Music’s global emerging artist program.