Thanks to DJ Uncle Waffles, amapiano made its landing on America's premier dance music stage, Coachella, again this year. In light of her achievement, let’s dissect what’s gone into the Uncle Waffles playbook:
Capturing & Captioning The Moment
It's a long way from when we first came across the Kreative Kornerr-backed artist. Back when the pandemic was a thing and it felt like - not just people - but the entire world was burning! The chant 'people are burning' made this moment as iconic as it was trend worthy. There's nothing as powerful as a recognisable catchphrase!
Raising The Performance Bar
Since then Waffles has taken her artform & stage presence to the next level by incorporating choreographed moves into her sets. “I tend to use my dance moves to translate the music, so you’re going to see what the song says even if you don’t understand it,” she told Billboard.
From enthralling crowds on dancefloors and running the digital streets, Waffles leveraged her virality to drop the ‘Red Dragon’ and ‘Asylum’ EPs and show off her vocal and production prowess. Both releases have made a sizeable dent on the charts with "Tanzania" and "Yahyuppiyah" gaining critical and cultural acclaim.According to #KgopoloReports, lead single from Asylum, "Yahyuppiyah" debuted at #57 and #140 on the Local Top 100 and International Top 200 charts last week.
Establishing A Visual Identity
For those who haven’t yet experienced her amazing dexterity live but are drawn to the music, Uncle Waffles’ visual direction perfectly showcases her diverse artistic toolkit. There’s energy, colour, dance and fashion: the embodiment of the amapiano lifestyle.
Becoming The Voice Of A Movement
Embodying the amapiano genre is why Waffles has landed multiple covers on major editorials, crafted exclusive mixes and playlists for leading DSPs and was featured on Audiomack’s #UpNow series which spotlights emerging artists primed to be the next generation of global music stars.
While Coachella is undoubtedly a huge milestone, this is only the beginning for Waffles as she aims to solidify her entry into the US Market with a tour that includes a stop at Boiler Room. Her impressive work ethic will see her tour for over 200 days this year!
Along with spreading the amapiano gospel and redefining what it means to be a DJ, Waffles brand-building has been exceptional! A Drake co-sign never hurts but it's partnerships with KFC, Always and Jagermeister that prove she has as much appeal in the boardroom as she does on stage.