david jenkins zulu musician

Photo: Instagram / @david_qadasi / @amesjenks

Meet David ‘Qadasi’ Jenkins: An accomplished Maskandi musician

David Qadasi Jenkins and Maqhinga Radebe are also involved in rhino conservation efforts.

david jenkins zulu musician

Photo: Instagram / @david_qadasi / @amesjenks

It’s as if a time-travelling pendulum was swung and spun us back to the days of Johnny Clegg. David Jenkins, popularly known as Qadasi, is the latest white South African who is passionate about the Maskandi music genre.

The Kwa-Zulu Natal based musician has been exposed to the ‘Africana’ musical art form since he was very young. Today, he and his fellow musician, Maqhinga Radebe, travel the world, amazing audiences with their talents.

Coming across a white person who is fluent in Nguni languages is something that is very hard to find in South Africa. For Qadasi, though, his quest to learn the language and embed himself into the Zulu culture is tied to his past.

His father was a journalist and so he would travel with to the depths of the Zululand, where he fell in love with the culture.

Read – Watch: Heartwarming clip of a blind elephant swaying to classical music

He grew up in Empangeni and he draws his inspiration from the chiefs and other musicians that he was exposed to, growing up at the heart of the Zululand.

All you need to know about David ‘Qadasi’ Jenkins

The Maskandi musician is currently promoting the collaborative release of his third album featuring Maqhinga Radebe.

In a biography written on his page, it is stated that

His last solo album, Uhambo Olusha, is the end result of the sounds Qadasi has been developing over the years and was nominated for Best Maskandi Album in the 2014 SATMA Awards and Best Traditional Album in the 2015 SAMA Awards. It encapsulates influences from many of his idols, ranging from the likes of Phuzekhemisi and Mfaz’ Omnyama to Johnny Clegg and Paul Simon.

In early 2016, Qadasi went on to record a collaborative album alongside friend and mentor, Maqhinga Radebe, titled, “Lashis’ Ilanga” – an organic, acoustic fusion of traditional Maskandi and western folk music. This was nominated for a 2017 SAMA Award for Best Traditional Album.



That is surely a great representation of the independent label he is signed to, Sande Entertainment, that is owned by Sibongiseni Shabalala, a member of the four-time Grammy Award-winning group, Ladysmith Black Mambazo.

Qadasi and Maqhinga are not only involved in refurbishing the local music genre. The two Maskandi musicians are very much involved in rhino conservation efforts, working closely with the Kingsley Holgate Foundation as well as Project Rhino KZN as Rhino Art ambassadors.

Besides his ability to speak Zulu fluently, people are rooting behind Qadasi who is on a quest to revive the Maskandi genre.