The town of Palapye has got a new recording studio called Ruff Riddims thanks to the efforts of 28-year-old producer, Moemedi Ramogapi.
According to Ramogapi, Ruff Riddims aims to discover and develop new talent in Botswana and market it to the world through, among other things, the Internet.
"I am working very hard to develop my label locally and internationally and the Internet is the cheapest and fastest way to get my artists and label exposed to the world. People are looking for African music and I am trying hard to tap into that market.
" It is not easy to get things happening through the Internet which is why we will be signing contracts with a company that will be dealing with our music in America and are involved with licensing the music to games and movies as well as marketing and distributing the music digitally to the world. The company already has the network set up to promote sales via digital downloads."
Ramogapi sees the Internet as a powerful tool. He says a good example of this is that he built his studio through the Internet. "I have also gathered connections in reggae and African music through the Internet and continue to do a lot of research by just searching on big search engines like Google".
Ruff Riddims has a blog, Ramogapi says they are on Myspace, Skype, Yahoo and Twitter, just to mention a few. "It's an affordable way to get known worldwide, he explains.
According to the producer-cum-graphic designer, Ruff Riddims, which is a 100 percent citizen-owned company, started becoming a reality while he was doing his final
"We currently have four artistes who are registed to Ruff Riddims, these being Kagiso 'Skeat' Tlhabano, Tebogo 'Tebza' Thogo, MaSuper Star and Thabang Garogwe. Skeat is a very talented musician with the ability to do more than one genre. His music covers kwasa house, Afro-pop, gospel, traditional music, and kwaito." He describes Tebza as a motswako/hip-hop artist but his album crosses over to reggae and dancehall.
Ramogapi claims both Tebza and Skeat are currently enjoying air play on radio stations across the world as they have made play lists in Canada, Germany, France and Australia. "They are also being featured in a number of blogs on the Internet".
MaSuper Star recently joined the Ruff Riddims stable and their album is currently being mixed. Thabang's music is rich with jazz, traditional and house and Afro-pop and gospel,' says Ramogapi.
Thabang Garogwe also happens to be a talented producer, who has in the past worked with the likes of Odirile 'Vee' Sento. Other producers for Ruff Riddims include Ramogapi himself and Oscar Chamba.
Ruff Riddims has also done corporate identities for Yarona FM and developed the DJ Fresh signature logo. Ramogapi used to work for Yarona FM doing a show called The Reggae Bashment. He says he moved to Palapye because the village is fast developing into a beautiful town.