YoungstaCPT was the headlining act at this year’s Repfees, hosted by Helderberg. Journalists George van Dyk and Courtney Williams listened to his infinite wisdom and this is what he shared with them.
Give YoungstaCPT’s music a listen and you’ll be immediately struck with incredible flow and bars, but this isn’t the primary purpose of his music.
Riyadh Roberts, commonly known by his stage name, YoungstaCPT, is a hip-hop artist hailing from Cape Town, as the name suggests. This MC prides himself on his heritage and culture; arguably the biggest influences on his music.
This is Youngsta’s third performance in Stellenbosch and over time he has learnt not to underestimate his audience and that versatility is key.
The name YoungstaCPT originates from Riyadh Roberts’ experience of “always being the younger guy in an older crowd”.
“Even now everyone around me is older. I have always been the baby-faced killer, like I play that role, but the second I am on stage I am beyond my years.”
Youngsta explains that his know-ledge stems from the fact that being a youngster doesn’t mean what it did. “Being brought up and exposed to drugs has made us wiser beyond our years. Being a Youngster from CPT is a whole other story.”
Youngsta is very aware of what he puts in his music and directs his responsibilities in music-making in a way that touches the youth. “Kids are going to listen to music way more than they do school work, so why don’t I put some life lessons in the music? That’s what rappers did for me!”
Rappers such as Tupac and The Notorious B.I.G. influenced Youngsta, teaching him lessons through music which he hopes to do himself with his own music. However, his biggest influences are Redman and Method Man, not only for their styles and flows, but because they illustrated to Youngsta what it means to be an MC (master of ceremonies).
“Like, anyone can rap. You can all rap, you just haven’t tried but then you get an MC, someone who can control an audience just by saying a few words on a mic and everyone listens. It’s like verbal acrobatics.”
After his interview, Youngsta proceeded to bring the house down with a bone rattling performance with face-melting freestyle and, of course, Youngsta’s unique colloquial insight that spins lyrical circles around your mind. Youngsta shares more wisdom and explains his view on Repfees: “The way I see it, you guys are promoting what you have to offer, and that’s what music is all about.”