When he hits a stage the world sits up and listens. Drumming since he was little – the instrument that garnered him the nickname ‘Hotstix’ – Sipho began moulding his career as he mastered many instruments, flute, piano, saxophone, kalimba, alto flute and African drums.
Hailing from Johannesburg, he kicked off his career as a professional musician at the age of 15 with a band called The Beaters, he has undoubtedly left his mark in the music industry. In 2005 Hotstix was presented with the SAMA Lifetime Achievement Award along with numerous industry accolades, but Sipho remains as humble as they come.
‘I became more and more attracted to jazz as I grew up, I wanted to understand my roots. I am very curious musician,’ says Sipho. ’We need to support the up-and-coming young artists who do such amazing work for the countries music industry.’
Despite a career spanning 50 years Sipho has also devoted a significant part of his life to philanthropic works and supporting local causes.
As a guest artist performing at this year’s Cape Town International Jazz Festival, Hotstix says he has fallen in love with all the history attached to this auspicious event. ‘The way the audience responds is always so heart-warming. I’m hoping to give them a great show but at the same I’m expecting to enjoy it just as much.’
Sipho’s continuous desire to be creative keeps him standing out from the crowd. ‘I have been involved in music since school with The Beaters, Harari and then as a solo artist. It is a lifelong journey that has no end in sight.”
Text: Nikita Sylvester