Based: Johannesburg

A Rapper extraordinaire.

“I’m my biggest inspiration. I  came to America with $100 in my pocket, jumped on stage, and my ass is still here.” And South African rapper-producer Jonny Joburg (Luthando Sithole) is rightfully so. In October last year, the Pietermaritzburg-born artist took what was supposed to be a five-day trip to attend the Revolt Music Conference in Miami, and five months later, he’s still in the United States and his new song Michael Jackson has recently premiered on Sean Combs aka Puff Daddy’s cable music channel Revolt TV.

While attending the annual event, the producer of South African rap hit Mazishe jumped on stage and performed in front of a panel that featured the likes of music executive LA Reid of Epic Records and producer DJ Khaled. “I just came to the conference to learn some stuff,” he shares over Skype from Los Angeles, which he refers to as his new home.

“Next thing you know: I have people telling me how good I am and that I should stay in the US, and pursue the rap industry here. Everything I thought about rap just got shattered when I got out to America.” And since taking that a trip to the US, Jonny Joburg – who has produced for musicians like singer Cama Gwini – says he’s been recording music and has been taken under the wing by the likes of former Motown Record president Andre Harrell.