January 25, 2024

Black Motion member to build a music studio for orphanage

Thabo ‘Smol' Mabogwane will host a fundraiser
Picture: Supplied

Growing up in Soshanguve, drummer and member of music duo Black Motion, Thabo "Smol" Mabongwane wished there were enough facilities and resources for upcoming artists and musicians to meet under one hub. Through the Thabo Smol Foundation, he is hoping to make a difference in his community so that history does not repeat itself.




Thabo launched the foundation (TSF) in late 2022 when he realised that youth knew very little about indigenous music and instruments. "The foundation is focused on giving back to the community through what I know best, music," he tells ZiMoja. He and a group of friends put an initiative together where they donate drums to underprivileged neigbourhoods. "There's a gap with indigenous instruments, especially in the hood. There's not enough knowledge about djembes and drums which is an important part of our culture. Almost every clan in Africa is represented by a type of drum," he says. "We use drums at weddings, funerals and traditional rituals and they have always been an important part of our culture," he adds. "So, we are trying to get this across through the foundation. We want to bring back and normalise indigenous instruments. Buying an imbira, you have to order it in China and that is sad. We have resources."




The Thabo Smol Foundation started the 1000 Meropa challenge where they donate drums and other indigenous instruments. "We started in Kimberly in April 2023 out of our pockets. We bought djembe drums and other native instruments. There was a plea in Kimberly to help the youth as there is a serious alcohol problem in the area" he says. "We started a drumming programme and asked the youth to join us at a community hall. There were over 120 people, mostly old people, surprisingly who were interested and passionate about the programme. We asked people to donate for the youth and we left some drums there. We plan to go to all nine provinces with the drumming programme." 




Though his foundation, Thabo wants to build a music studio in the township of Soshanguve where he grew up. "We went to Jehova Jirah Orphanage in Soshanguve. We gave them a helping hand and planted some trees during the holiday season. We are also in the process of building them a studio." On the orphanage visit, Thabo says he bonded with kids and tried to understand their needs. "We don't want to just do things for the sake of it and just take pictures, then leave. The kids really want to be involved in the arts. We wanted to provide for them." On Saturday, 27 January, he is hosting a fundraising event where people will pledge towards the building of the studio and 1000 Meropa challenge. "There are about 100/150 kids at the orphanage. We plan to be very involved in the work that happens at the studio and help to release albums with the kids."




Thabo says he has always been passionate about giving. "I grew up dancing at these centres that were left for us by legends in the community," he says. "I want to continue with that. It inspired me a lot. I want to leave something that is tangible and will make others up also want to help." While also spending time giving back, Black Motion also plans to release music, featuring the late Busi Mhlogo, on songs they have remixed. "You never know, we might even feature Morda." Speaking on his relationship with his former band mate, he says, they are "cool. Yeah, we are good man. You never know, we might shock everyone and feature him in the project," he laughs.

Thank you! You'll receive your Newsletter soon!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

By signing up, you agree to our Legal notice & to receive communications from Siyaya TV, which may include marketing promotions, advertisements and sponsored content.