He’s a man of many aspirations and clearly, many talents.
From starting a popular YouTube series, Entlek, Entlek – where musicians deconstruct the meaning of the lyrics in their songs – to becoming a musician himself, Dali Danger is doing it all.
Speaking to Drum, the 25-year-old from Vosloorus, Gauteng explains his passion for music and what inspires him the most.
The lockdown EP
“I always say this; as I kid, I fell I love with the art of making music,” he tells us.
Kabelo Mabalane’s Pantsula For Life is the one song that started it all for the YouTube star.
“It touched a special place in my heart as a kid and has stuck with me to date.
“A few years later, I knew I wanted to make music when I stumbled upon artists like Eminem and 50 cent I listened attentively to their music until I eventually started writing my own raps,” he says.
He released his EP, Penny's Rose during lockdown, and just a few weeks later, it had over 25 000 plays on Apple Music.
Although he says he has always known that he makes good music, he did not expect this response from fans.
“I always knew that my music was dope, but the response from the listeners was amazing.
“Ordinary people that I wouldn’t expect to listen to my music love it and they think it’s good music. I always thought its “dope” music, not “good” music. I didn’t think I’d get this number of streams. I’ve released EP’s and singles before, but they’ve never been streamed like this. Maybe it’s because the world is changing. It’s amazing,” he says.
“The EP was honestly inspired by lockdown and I used my free time to do what I love the most.
“I decided to dedicate it to my father that is why it’s called Penny’s Rose. My late father’s name was Penrose and his nickname was Penny, and I am the rose,” he tells us.
Dali’s father died in 1999, when he was just four years old. “Because he passed away when I was so young, I think he will always be hero. I still view him as that four-year-old kid.
“He will always be my hero, someone that I look up to and my guardian angel now.
“I decided to dedicate it to him because I’m at a stage in my life where I’m entering into manhood and a certain level of seriousness. I give thanks to those that came before and move on so I can start this journey”.
Through his musically journey, Dali says he also found love with a girl he had a crush on.
“On the song 2020 featuring ASAP Shembe we speak about the world ending and you telling a girl that you have a crush on her.
“It was by coincidence that we made the song and I was going through that very same thing.
“I felt like the world was ending, so, I told the girl I had a crush on that I like her and now we’re together.”
YouTube and social media fame
Dali gained popularity on Twitter not long after he started his account in 2011.
“I’ve been on Twitter for a very long time,” he says.
“I’ve seen trends come and die and I’ve always noticed how it’s easy for people to get popularity and lose just as quickly.
“I’ve always wanted to be famous. I’ve always been known on Twitter, but I decided to be known for my work more than anything else. I started working with people like OK Wasabi and we gained more popularity and more friends on social media."
He and popular YouTuber, OK Waabi are best friends and have built their careers together.
“I’ve always worked with OK Wasabi, we come from the same hood and he’s my best friend.
“I used to shoot 100% of his content and we did it for Instagram. We decided to move to YouTube at some point, but it demanded longer videos.
“We had the concept of touring different hoods and trying kotas. Before then, I had never been in front of the camera like that. I showed my real personality and people liked it and that’s how I fell in love with YouTube,” he says.
Speaking on his plans for the next year, Dali says he plans to release an album and go on tour.
“I promised the nine people I work with on Entlek Entlek that the show is going to get on TV and we will get every artist in South Africa to come to show and I want to fulfil that promise.”