On The Decks With DJ Roxxi

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Having claimed the title of Africa’s first Indian female club DJ and producer; Deshnie Govender, better known as DJ Roxxi, chats about her work.

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Briefly tell us about yourself?

I’m originally from Durban, and moved to Joburg to work in the digital field. I head up the social media department at a digital agency. I have been D’Jing for six years, but the past two years have seen me step into a more creative process when it comes to production and songwriting. I also run my own blog, which publishes content about my travels, music and the digital world South Africa.

How did you get into D’Jing?

I have always been passionate about music and D’Jing was the best fit in terms of getting my foot through the door.

Who have you worked with?

Some of our country’s best DJs such as Fresh, Euphonik, Vinny Da Vinci, Milkshake, Lady Lea, Roger Goode, Poppy, and others. I have also shared the stage with Akon, Chomee, Arthur and The Arrows.

What sort of challenges do you face in your industry?

Gender aside, just trying to push to get airplay and create awareness around your music is a struggle for most artists not signed to a big label. From a female DJ perspective, I think the landscape is changing, but there are still times when there is a need to prove yourself.

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Tell us about your new single, Musica Na Alma, which features Weza Solange, Lection and Beatmachine. What was the inspiration behind that?

Merging cultures with music! I signed to Beatmachine Records this year, headed up by Trompie who has done amazing work on Morafe and Khuli Chana’s tracks. We workshopped a beat that had elements of my Indian heritage in it, for month. I was looking for someone with a rich, unique tone to their voice to do spoken word on the track and Weza was the perfect fit. After completing the single, I decided we needed a hip-hop element, and that’s when Lection was brought in. From Angola to South Africa, this track is a positive upbeat feel good anthem!

Who would you like to collaborate with in the future?

Anatii, for sure! I would also love to work with Da L.E.S and Mafikizolo – merging genres is what I aim to focus on.

What are you working on now?

We are pushing the single that just dropped this week, which will be part of my EP coming out early next year. Aside from that, I am launching my creative blog called Greative and just gigging the summer away!

What advice would you give someone who is trying to break into your industry?

If you are passionate about the industry, then find a way to get yourself in. One “no” should not set you back; just believe in yourself and stay true to who you are. Luck is when preparation meets opportunity, so be ready to tackle an opportunity at any time.