|Birth name||Game Gaobaone Bantsi|
July 22, 1986 |
|Occupation(s)||Rapper, songwriter, businessman|
|Associated acts||Scar, HHP, Cibil Nyte, JR[disambiguation needed], Ross Jack, Octave Couplet|
Game Goabaone Bantsi (born 22 July 1986) but better known by his stage name Zeus, is a Motswana hip-hop artist, MC and businessman. Zeus released his debut album Freshly Baked in 2008 which included the hits Back in the days and Gijima. The album was generally well received and garnered him a Channel O Music Video award nomination and win in the Best Hip Hop video for the aforementioned Gijima. His sophomore offering, 2009's The Flipside has been positively reviewed in both his home country as well as neighbouring South Africa. In 2010, he was ranked seventh in a list of the Top 15 South African Rappers and 4th on MNET's Top 10 African Rappers for 2010 compilation. Zeus currently splits his time between Gaborone, his hometown and Johannesburg, South Africa.
Zeus was born Serowe and raised in Gaborone, the capital city of Botswana. He has three siblings; two brothers and one sister and is the last born in his family. On the musical tastes of his family members, he once stated in an interview, "My mother religiously loves gospel, my father is a fan of country music, my two brothers love hip-hop and dancehall respectively and my sister digs R&B. So, all sorts of music I was exposed to when growing up influenced the album." Zeus grew up in a Christian household and still identifies himself as a Christian.
Zeus completed his secondary school education at Rainbow High School, an independent school located in Gaborone in 2003. Thereafter he embarked upon a BCOMM in Marketing and Management degree at Monash University South Africa graduating in 2007 Zeus has made it know that he believes education is very important.
“...first and foremost in any language or country I consider myself an MC who is a creative writer, freestyler and deliverer of flows that the ear can not ignore. The fact that I am a Motswana and an African adds different dimensions to my Mcing that differentiates me from others in the international Hip Hop arena so I am an MC, an African MC and a Motswana MC.” - Zeus
In the early 2000s, a teenage Zeus began making a name for himself in the Hip-Hop Scene in Botswana. His natural talent, flare, eloquence and refusal to be content with being 'just another rapper' made him difficult to brush aside. 2008 saw his years of hard work come to fruition as his debut effort hit the shelves.
2008-2009: Freshly Baked
In 2008, Zeus released his first album, Freshly Baked. The fourteen track record was met with very good reviews in Botswana and propelled him to star status in his homeland. Later that year, Zeus received crossover success when Freshly Baked was nominated for album of the year at the MTN-HYPE magazine Hip Hop awards in South Africa. This further solidified his talent as artist and widened the spectrum of his appeal. 2008 continued to be a good year for Zeus as the song that first put him on the map, Imagination was also nominated for the Best Reggae Dancehall video at the Channel O Music Video Awards At the end of 2009 Zeus had an impressive victory at the 2009 Channel O Music Video Awards when he beat out competition from the likes of Hip Hop Pantsula (All I Need video), Okyeame Kwame (Woso video), Jay Ru (Big Boi Anthem video), Pro (Uthini Ngo Pro), and Black Rhino (Black Chata) to win Best Hip Hop Video for Gijima.
2009: The Flipside
The 18th of December saw Zeus release his second album, The Flipside. The album was distributed by Soul Candi Records and was a partnership between D.I.Y/Rizn Entertainment, Octave couplet and Big Dawg productions. The album is made up of sixteen tracks and features the likes of RJ Benjamin, Don Juan, Stoan and Jon Jazi. Its most prominent singles have been Out of my mind, Diski Business and its biggest hit to date, Champagne Music. The video for Champagne Music has garnered him his third consecutive Channel O Music Video Award nomination - this time for Most Gifted Male Video. His video will be up against Wande Coal's Bumper To Bumper, Banky W Strong Thing, Black Coffee with the video for Juju featuring Bantwini and favourite K'NAAN's "T.I.A".
2010: "Beef" with Scar
During a broadcast of their Yarona FM breakfast shows, The Real Enchilada (co-hosted with prominent media figure, Tumi Ramsden) fellow Motswana rapper Scar displayed behaviour which did not amuse Zeus. Ramsden had just played a new track from Zeus' album and said that she liked it. Scar's opinion of the song was made apparent by a fake yawn. This led Zeus to post a comment on his Facebook page and Scar did the same on his page. The War of Posts continued back and forth. The Voice reporter, Kabelo Dipholo asked both artists respectively about their feud via Facebook.
Scar responded writing:
"There is nothing to inbox. There is NOTHING going on between me and Zeus. I don’t have any “beef” with any one of Botswana artists."
Zeus' version of their relationship was as follows:
"...I will end by saying that not too long ago Scar was my people; I even organized a gig at my old university campus in Gauteng bringing him and Stagga down, in fact I even tried getting him on some of the projects I was working on in SA including DJ Lemonka’s Motswako Tape Vol 1. I was about building with the man not hating and I can give you a long list of people that can testify to this. Things seemed to change after his fallout with my manager and business partner late last year who he used to work with too but thereafter he had unkind words about my colleague in his HUB magazine interview, making snide remarks about the management label and as he put it the “number one” artist on it. I honestly find this situation childish and unproductive; we are arguably the two most internationally recognized brands in Botswana hip hop we should be working together not against each other!"
2012: Honey I'm Home Mixtape
“This is Zeus’s 3rd official offering (set to be released 23/11/12) and it is a mixtape that as the name suggests represents; firstly Zeus’ return from a 2year hiatus, since 2009′s critically acclaimed the Flipside album, and secondly his inauguration and coronation to the forefront of local as well as African hip hop as a whole. The 13 track masterpiece was recorded at Bedrock studios and features production from long time collaborator Octave Couplet’s Don Juan, new OC recruits K-Zo and Bash Boi as well as Rimzy and Bally from Heavensent Productions. The mixtape/freetape features verses from AKA, Tumi from the volume, Hydro, Don Juan, Thato_daPoet, Vusi, long time friend and collaborator KEB as well as up and comer Ozi F. Teddy.”
Zeus has lent his talent and time to various organisations and causes which include: Childline Botswana, Oxfam International, Youth Health Organization (YOHO), a PEPFAR supported program dedicated to reducing new HIV infections among Batswana youth and most recently TeachAIDS. He has also championed for progress and growth in the Botswana Music Industry.
Recently Zeus established his own record label and events company, D.I.Y Entertainment. He serves as the Director of Business Development.
Zeus is a private individual that prefers to keep his personal life from the media.
- Nigerian Music - Trio Of Double Trophy Wins At 2009 Channel O Music Video Awards!
- Zeus to launch The Flipside
- Zeus celebrates birthday celebrity catwalk style
- Top 15 South African Rappers
- MNET Top Ten African Rappers for 2010 list
- Seuz vows to take South Africans head on
- Zeus - Museke African artistes
- Channel O Music Video Award winner, Zeus, joins TeachAIDS efforts
- Botswana: 'Zeus' Gets Channel O Music Video Nomination
- Channel O Music Video Awards 2010
- Africa’s most gifted set to take flight with 2010 Channel O Music Video Awards
- BIG WEEKEND 04/06/10
- Where is the Botswana Music Industry?
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