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28 Jul, 2014

All #AXECESS Interview: Ms. Cosmo

For the Jozi club massive, Ms. Cosmo's name has become synonymous with a dope night out. Her sets are crafted such that they fit any party mood; she moves comfortably between Top 40 hits and the latest, soon-to-be-chart burners. Continentally, she's known for being a mix deejay on Channel O and her new show on 5 FM music radio - The Stir Up, is certainly living up to its name. We caught up with her to find out a lil' bit more about the country's favourite lady DJ…

Who is Ms. Cosmo? And how long has she been in love with hip hop?

I was born in Jozi, having lived in Diepkloof until the age of six. My family then moved on up to the dusty streets of Sunninghill, where I spent most of my school years. I was quite an active child with a love for all sports; netball (which I still play today!), cheerleading and gymnastics. I went on to study Finance at UJ and worked at one of the big banks before leaving it all behind to follow my passion: music! I started DJ lessons in 2010 and haven't looked back since. As for radio, I started with TransAfrica Radio in 2011 with a Sunday morning show. I joined YFM in 2012 as an YTKO Mix DJ and left for 5FM in 2013, where I now have my Sunday hip hop show. I've also been a mix DJ with Channel O since 2012 which has exposed me to the African market. That helped me secure opening performance spots at the Chris Brown, Kanye West, 2 Chainz and more recently, Kendrick Lamar shows.

South African hip hop is on the up, especially over the past five years or so. What, in your opinion, has contributed to this growth?

I think [the hip hop scene] has definitely progressed over the years. I think it's because of the improved access to digital information, music equipment and accessibility to music in general. South African hip hop has learnt how to market itself on the same platform as all other music genres in South Africa; it's become the new "cool" and the artists are doing more performances for the fans who consume their music.

Jozi-based artists seem to receive all the attention. Do you think this will ever change?

Slowly but surely. The thing is, most of the media hubs are based in Jozi, so accessibility to artists is much easier in JHB in terms of doing interviews and attending events. Without proper marketing and advertising, consumers just aren't aware of many great artists in other parts of the country. So media plays a big role in an artist's career.

You've got a hip hop show on 5FM, one of the biggest commercial radio stations in the country. What pressures come with such a position?

The pressure is to always stay informed, to provide the latest and best music. I have to present the best [sides] of hip hop and make it entertaining. I also have to build the culture to greater heights than where it is now. That's a lot to take on on my own, but I love the challenge!

Find out more by following Ms. Cosmo on twitter.

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