He is a member of the Hip-hop movement the Glitz Gang with artists like L-Tido, Sean Pages and Maggz and known for his rich lyrical content, whether you call him Morale or Mr Joburg, there is no denying that this brother is here to stay or rather change the rap game completely. His latest offering Smile, Clap & Bow has been nominated for best hip-hop album at the Metro fm awards to be held this month and his single “call my number” is making waves on radio stations around the country. Youth Village’s Tshepy Matloga chats to Morale about his music career, life, love and aspirations..
YV: How would you describe Morale?
Morale: Morale is an extrovert and is very out going. His urban and he is a Model C groomed socialite whose very driven cause he comes from a poor background. He knows where he comes from and where his going. Like all artists I like my space, that’s where most ideas are born. When I’m soul searching and in my creative state of mind I like to be alone but when I’m happy and searching for new experiences to fuel my creativity I’m the opposite. Best way to describe me is from a distance, I’m like a fig, I’m prickly on the outside and very sweet on the inside once you get to know me.
YV: What is your real name and why the name Morale, how did it come about?
Morale: My name is Thabo. My mom called me Morality, it wasn’t a name stated in my birth certificate but it’s a name I grew up with. My friends later on called me Morale for short.
YV: How did you get into the music industry?
Morale: Well for me, I was just writing and recording with no real intention of releasing my music. I was just doing it for fun and I loved listening to what I was recording. My girlfriend inspired me to do a mixtape after she was being a groupie for Prokid at some show, I was jealous so I decided to show her I could do it too. So I put my mixtape together and some songs ended up going on radio. My song was number one on the MetroFm “Rhyme & Reason” rap show and here I am and the rest is behind me lol.
YV: If you were not an artist, what would you have been?
Morale: I would have still been a broker.
YV: What inspires your lyrical content?
Morale: Life and music.
YV: What are you listening to right now?
Morale: “Watch The Throne” and “The Carter IV”
YV: What do you do for fun?
Morale: I kiss girls lol. I socialize and hang out with my friends. I like traveling and writing as well. Nothing beats watching a good movie.
YV: Does Morale have a special someone in his life?
Morale: Yes two, right palm and left palm lol…Kidding! Seriously I’m single and it was a conscious decision I wanted to focus on my career which is music. When it’s moving and shaking I’ll settle down.
YV: What do you look for in a woman?
Morale: I look for booty lol… no I’m joking. I mean she has to attract me and I’m attracted to power, stability, zest, confidence, high self esteem, wisdom and a sexy body. I need someone who knows where she’s coming from and where she’s going. Someone who knows her worth and doesn’t mind waiting for good things to come to her. And of course she has to be pretty.
YV: What is the one thing nobody knows about Morale?
Morale: I can be shy at times.
YV: What is the craziest thing you have ever done?
Morale: Drinking and driving…Never again.
YV: Favorite dish?
YV: Favorite hangout spot?
Morale: The Grand (I go there once or twice a year).
YV: What do you think of groupies and how do you react to them?
Morale: I love groupies. If you aint got groupies then your music aint right. If you don’t have groupies that means you not appealing to the market out there. Groupies are a good sign. That means you doing something right.
YV: How involved are you in the production of your music?
Morale: I’m a 110% involved. I don’t want anybody getting in between me and my ideas. I can’t rap to beats I don’t feel. The music has to take me somewhere for me to write. I like being there when my songs are being mixed and mastered. I’m involved a 110%.
YV: What do you think of the current hip hop state in the country, do you think its international material or we are still getting there?
Morale: I think the talent is there. Media is finally listening to what hip hop is saying. The only thing lacking is corporates pumping money into this genre that’s not only music but also a life style. Artists are starting to see themselves as brands. The game is at its best, and the guys at the top of the food chain are the ones that can grow it to the next level.
YV: Tell us about the Glitz Gang, How did that come about?
Morale: We all friends and we’ve been rapping as far as I can remember. We were from different places but all knew each other. We all came from different crews that we broke from. I decided to form the group called Glitterati and the first recruit was L-Tido. Sean Page joined and Maggz was the last to join us. We had our differences as a crew and we all decided to make Glitz Gang a movement rather then a crew. We are family that’s been together for ever, I guess the public sees and feels the love we have for each other. I’ll promise you one thing though; we will change the rap game and be remembered for it.