Focalistic holds the record as one of South Africa’s finest rap artists. The sensational music talent stormed the South African music scene some years ago and since then, he has proved to be an asset to the local industry and Africa as a whole. Focalistic, who is currently 26 years old is a hitmaker with many chart-toppers to his name. He has toured many cities and also worked with prominent artists since his emergence in the spotlight.
Besides rap, Focalistic is well-versed in Amapiano and hip-hop. His musical talent has won awards from several nominations, as well as special recognition from both within and outside of the local industry.
Focalistic Hails From Pretoria, South Africa
Focalistic, originally born Lethabo Sebesto, was born on the 26th day of May 1996, in Pretoria, South Africa. He was raised in Grankuwa but later moved to Midrand before returning to Pretoria. Not much is known about his family background and childhood.
The rapper lost his father Kgomotso Sebesto at a young age, precisely in grade 9. He was a political journalist and had a great talent for poetry. However, his mother is alive and kicking strong. She started studying accountancy as a teacher while raising her three kids after her husband’s death.
Focalistic’s parents had three children together and he happens to be the middle child. The identities of his siblings and mother are yet to be revealed by the artist. Also, information about his siblings’ occupations, whereabouts, and what they are currently up to is not known.
Focalistic attended several schools as a young boy owing to the fact that his parents moved from one region to another then. Regardless of that, he was a brilliant student and always among the top 10 in class. Unfortunately, the names of the institutions he attended in Pretoria, Grankuwa, and Midrand are not available for public consumption.
He Has a University Degree
The Amapiano superstar had his college education at the prestigious University of Pretoria, where he graduated in the year 2017 with a degree in political science. His decision to earn a degree from the university was to fulfill his mother’s wish and also make her happy. The rapper revealed in an interview that his mother has always wanted him to be a graduate.
While in the university, he was one of those who was open about dealing with mental health. He also suffered depression but was able to overcome it after watching documentaries on other artists and people who had similar issues.
The celebrity artist got his stage name “Focalistic” from his older cousin. He shared that his cousin used to listen to a lot of hip-hop and that they used to talk about his vision for his music career back then. Focalistic added that his cousin used to call him Focalisticcataclism then and told him that the name meant ‘A focused person who’s going to change the world and how people view things.’
The rapper decided to cut and pick it up after he launched his music career and since then, it has stuck with him.
He Launched His Music Career At The Age Of 20 And It’s Been An Awesome Journey So Far
Before music, Focalistic was very much in love with the round leather game, soccer. He was so passionate about soccer and also good at it to the extent that he was nicknamed Pritori Maradona in high school.
Focalistic’s musical journey began after he left the university as he couldn’t get over his love for his music even while he was still a footballer. He became a professional musician in the year 2016, looking up to music greats like Mojava, T.I., Julie Chana, and Hugh Masekela. They were not just his major influences but also his role models.
By 2017, the young rapper had already started writing and releasing songs. He was subsequently signed by Major League Music in 2018, after which he released his first project with the record label in the same year.
Focalistic may have inherited his music gene from his father Kgomotso. The rapper once shared in an interview that his father had always wanted to make music. He added that he knows his father would be proud of him anywhere he is right now.
Since his emergence in the spotlight, Focalistic has continued to prove that he is really blessed with super musical talent and creativity. The South African Amapiano singer has warmed his way into the hearts of people and also earned so much love and admiration from critics, fans, and his colleagues. This is one of the reasons he has remained relevant in the industry regardless of the fact that he is relatively new.
Best of Focalistic’s Songs So Far
Focalistic is unarguably one of the best rappers and Amapiano artists in the industry right now. He has invested a lot in his music career ever since he broke into mainstream success. He has impressively worked with several notable artists on collaborative works and has also independently released a good number of personal hits.
The former soccer star calls his style of rap ‘Pina tsa ko kasi’. Apart from Amapiano, he also does rap and dancehall. Although all of his songs are naturally appealing and compelling, his hit “Ke Star” is considered his best project.
“Ke Star” did not only chart at number 16 on Billboard Top Triller Global chart in the U.S after its release but it also won him international recognition and overwhelming success.
Focalistic has worked with several notable music superstars including Kabza de small, DJ Maphorisa, Cassper Nyovest, Vigro Deep, Nigerian sensational singer Davido, Mr. JazziQ, Riky Rick, Busta 929, and many other talented artists in the South African music industry.
A look at the Focalistic’s popular songs
- Shoota Moghel – 2019
- 16 Days No Sleep – 2021
- Eketle Pele
- Dankie Mphilo
- Christian Dior
- Ibiza Ko Gomora
- Full Settle
- Shame on You
- Pitori to Paris
- Never Know featuring Cassper
- Bae Bar
- Bothata Keng
- Smile again ft Senzo Afrika
- Patrice Motshepe featuring Zingah
- Champion Sound – featuring Davido
- Blecke featuring Jazzi Disciples
- Ke Star feat Vigro Deep
Focalistic dropped his Extended Play Quarantined on April 10, 2020, after which he released his first studio album titled: Sgubhu Ses Excellent in the same year. 2021 was such a beautiful year for Focalistic as his career gained the needed boost, as well as international recognition.
To his credit, the Amapiano artist released his album, President Ya Straata, in September 2021. The piece was released with its lead single titled: 16 Days No Sleep. Notable artists that were featured in it are Mellow & Sleazy, DJ Maphorisa, and Kabza De Small.
In 2020, his hit with Virgo Deep “Ke Star” was certified gold with sales of 25 000 copies while its remix “Ke Star” (featuring Davido and Virgo Deep) charted at number 16 on Billboard Top Triller Global chart in the U.S. Focalistic met Davido in 2019 during a club appearance in Pretoria.
A Recap Of Focalistics’s EPs, Studi Album, and Hit Singles
- Quarantined (EP)- April 2020
- Sgubhu Ses Excellent (Studio Album) – 2020
- President Ya Straata (Album) – 2021
- Ke Star – 2021
- Ke Star (remix) – February 2021
- “16 Days No Sleep” (Lead single for President Ya Straata) – 2021
President Ya Straata Has Seven Superb Tracks, Featuring Many South African Talented Artists
Below are the tracks on the President Ya Straata album and the artists featured therein.
- Barcardi Ke Religion by Focalistic ft. Mellow and Sleazy
- 16 Days No Sleep by Focalistic featuring DJ Maphorisa, Mellow and Sleazy
- Paranoia by Focalistic feat DJ Maphorisa and Busta 929
- Peer Pressure by Focalistic featuring Caltonic SA
- Rabaiki by Focalistic featuring DJ Maphorisa, Mellow and Sleazy
- Honda by Focalistic featuring Felo Le Tee and Myztro
- Mani You by Focalistic featuring DJ Maphorisa, Mellow and Sleazy
Focalistic Has Also Featured On Several Successful Projects In The Industry
Being a sensational rapper, we are not surprised that many A-list artists in the country find Focalistic talented enough to work with – by the way, he is arguably one of the top breakout African stars of the past three years.
The Pretoria native is famed for his sonic catch-phrase, “Ase trap tse ke pina tsa ko kasi”, loosely translating to this is not trap music, it’s songs we listen to in the township.
Below are the major projects of prominent artists in the South African industry Focalistic has been part of.
- Tshego – Together Ft. Focalistic
- Touchline – Quantum Ft. Focalistic
- Manyonyoba – Ft. Focalistic & Major League
- Major League DJz – 19 Tobetsa ft. Focalistic
- K-Zaka – Ngiyakhubula Ft. Focalistic
- Major League ft. Cassper Nyovest & Focalistic – Skhaftin
- TTGO – Got ‘Em Ft. Focalistic
- 19 Tobesta – 2018
- KamoMphela – Punisher Ft. Focalistic
- Taxi Driver ft. Focalistic
- Major League ft Focalistic – Ase Trap Ke Pina Tsa Ko Kasi EP
- Major League & Focalistic – Jezabel Ft. Senzo Afrika & Abidoza
- SheshaGeza Beats
BADDEST 😈 x PRESIDENT YA STRAATA ✊🏾 – CHAMPION SOUND MUSIC VIDEO + MP3 OUT NOW 🚨
— President ya Straata 👨🏾💼 (@FOCALISTIC) November 19, 2021
Focalistic Boasts An Impressive Career Profile With Awards And Achievements
Focalistic has grown to become a force to reckon with since he stormed the industry. It is difficult not to rock or listen to his songs and the several nominations and awards he has won so far clearly show that talent and creativity pay off indeed.
The young man does not only rule the streets of Mzansi but also across borders and cultures. Some of the things Focalistic wants to prioritize in the future are releasing songs with his favorite African artists, inspiring more kids, and hosting his own show in South Africa with artists from all over the continent.
Below are his major achievements and the awards he has won so far.
- In 2016, he emerged as the winner of the Artist On Rise competition.
2. He also bagged seven different nomination awards in the All Africa Music Awards 2021 in different categories namely:
- Best Male Artist
- Artist of the Year
- Best African Collaborations
- Best Artist African Dance
- Best Artist in African Electro
- Break out Artist of the Year
- Song of the Year
3. Focalistic was a nominee for Best African Act at MTV Europe Music Awards in 2021 although he lost to Wizkid.
4. His single Fak’mal emerged as a chart-topper on the YFM Hip Hop music chart.
5. With the release of the Ke Star remix in February 2021 which he featured one of Nigeria’s talented and amazing music superstars Davido and South Africa’s Virgo Deep, his fame skyrocketed internationally. The track made it to #16 on the Billboard Top Triller Global chart in America.
6. In September 2021, he headlined the AmaFest Tour that took place in the United Kingdom where he participated in the promotion of the Amapiano genre.
7. In 2021, the Pretoria-born superstar earned the top honor of Sowetan’s Entertainer of the Year for his great exploits.
8. In August 2021, Focalistic performed in front of 40,000 people at Yam Carnival in London.
9. Recently he won the best male and corroboration at the African Muzik Magazine Awards (Afrimma).
The Amapiano Artist Is Currently Signed To 18 Area Holdings Record Label
Focalistic was signed to Major League Music; this was when he first emerged in the music scene. He worked with the record label for some years, releasing some of his earliest works under the firm.
However, he has since left the stable. He now has his own record label, which he launched in 2020. The name of his record label is 18 Area Holdings, which he established in partnership with The Vth Season.
Focalistic Has Since Quit Hip Hop
This may come as a big surprise but it is true. In an interview with a local tabloid published in the month of January 2022, Focalistic revealed that he has stopped making hip-hop music. When asked why, he explained that he didn’t know what hip hop is, given the fact that he grew up in Pitori, Zone 2, Ga-Rankuwa.
He added that Hip Hop comes from Brooklyn and that it generally talks about things he couldn’t relate to, such as gun violence and other things. Focalistic made it clear that he was raised in a friendly neighborhood and that he would love to maintain a positive vibe in his music.
The superstar said he easily relates to Amapiano and that it comes to him naturally. Focalistic is currently not in a relationship with anyone. He also mentioned during the interview that he is pretty focused on his music career now but would love to start up a family later.