Russian Bear presents #IAMNEXT

Russian Bear Vodka had entrenched the brand within the local Hip-Hop culture when they signed superstar Riky Rick, and last year to celebrate his limited edition bottle we saw the birth of the #IAMNEXT competition. They put out an APB calling all the lyricists in South Africa. The #IAMNEXT crowned champion would stand a chance of winning their own limited edition bottle, just like Riky. 

Now Russian Bear is taking things to the #NextLevel by providing a platform to expose the hidden local talent, and bring their flow to Russian Bear’s custom designed mobile recording studio. Its journey began on June 16th, and we will see a new champion crowned in mid-September. Live recording sessions, battles and live performances from the RapLyf crew and King Kwesta himself, is what you can expect when you get down to selected venues mentioned below.  

Russian Bear brand manager, Simone Burns explains: 

We’ll be coming to a hood near you to unearth the freshest talent in the South African hip hop scene. Aspiring rappers will get an opportunity to record their own demo track with Psyko Beats. While on our journey, the freshest rapper with the winning demo will score a recording deal for a co-lab single with Kwesta, produced by Makwa Beats and released by Raplyf Records. 

As a wise man once said, “If you had, one shot, one opportunity, to seize everything you ever wanted, one moment. Would you capture it? Or just let it slip?”

Do you have the balls to lay it all out in the #IAMNEXT booth? 
If you do, visit the Russian Bear website now! We want to hear what you got up your sleeves.  Goodluck.

Gauteng Venues: 

  • Jubees Place (Soweto), Friday 16 June, 12pm – 4pm
  • Mzala’s Place (Soweto), Friday 16 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • Mochacho’s Lost City (Katlehong), Saturday 17 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • 707 Panyaza (Soweto), Sunday 18 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • Thibo’s Cafe (Mamelodi), Thursday 22 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • Lavianto Lounge (Trevenna), Friday 23 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • eSocialink (Soweto), Saturday 24 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • Mboma’s Place (Soweto), Sunday 25 June, 12pm – 4pm
  • Cherry On Top (Soweto), Sunday 25 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • The Blue Room (Hatfield), Wednesday 28 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • Liquid Zone (Soshanguve), Friday 30 June, 6pm – 10pm
  • Good Hope Tavern (Sasolburg), Saturday 1 July, 12pm – 4pm
  • Baloboza (Sharpville), Saturday 1 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Palms Lounge and Grill (Soweto), Sunday 2 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Thabiso@Mams (Mamelodi), Friday 7 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Stoep 15 (Alexandra), Saturday 8 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Dans Hope (Diepsloot), Saturday 8 July, 12pm – 4pm
  • Hope Tavern (Soshanguve), Friday 14 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Roof on Top (Mapetla), Saturday 15 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Black Ball Fever (Mamelodi East), Sunday 16 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • TRT2 (Mamelodi West), Sunday 16 July, 12pm – 4pm
  • Europa Lounge (Sunnyside), Friday 21 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Jazz House (Katlehong), Saturday 22 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Da Venue (KwaThema Springs), Saturday 22 July, 12pm – 4pm
  • Club TT (Orangefarm), Sunday 23 July, 12pm – 4pm
  • Mojapere Place (Sebokeng), Sunday 23 July, 6pm – 10pm

KZN Venues: 

  • Hot Shots (Tongaat), Friday 28 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Metrogents Tavern (Umlazi), Saturday 29 July, 2pm – 6pm
  • Eyadini (Umlazi), Saturday 29 July, 8pm – 12am
  • Mashamplanes (Chesterville), Sunday 30 July, 12pm – 4pm
  • Artizen Restaurant and Lounge (KwaMashu), Sunday 30 July, 6pm – 10pm
  • Zig Zag Bar and Lounge (Berea Centre – Durban), Friday 3 August, 6pm – 10pm
  • Joe Cools (OR Tambo Parade), Friday 4 August, 6pm – 10pm
  • 003 Lifestyle (Imbali – Pietermaritzburg), Saturday 5 August, 3:30pm – 7:30pm
  • Y2K (Imbali – Pietermaritzburg), Saturday 5 August, 9:30pm – 1am
  • Pulse (Pietermaritzburg), Thursday 11 August, 6pm – 10pm
  • Sbu’s Lounge (Inanda), Sunday 6 August, 12pm – 4pm
  • Sophies Choice (Imbali), Friday 11 August, 12pm – 4pm
  • Havana Music Café (Durban Central), Saturday 12 August, 6pm – 10pm

Port Elizabeth, East London and Cape Town – your dates get announced soon… but in the meantime go and listen to your competition’s sessions


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Cinematographer & Audio Production Engineer by trade, Hip Hop head and independant Emcee by design. Music is the art that's inside us, Hip Hop is that craft that binds us. Founding member of Disciples Of Truth (D.O.T) & one half of the Soothsayers. Only bringing you the illest and realist C.R.E.A.M of the crop.

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