T-Bose Making the Best of TV and Radio (Article on RadioBiz)
Memories of my high school career are embroidered with the memory of Thabo Mokwele on the radio, speaking into my spirit and playing music that made those late nights studying a little more bearable. From 9pm till midnight, I was one of the many that was accompanied through the night by Mokwele’s charm. It is mainly because of this that I jumped at the opportunity to have a chat with this man who has aptly named his current show, The best “T” in the City about himself and his relationship with music.
The Kaya FM radio host, who is popularly known as T-Bose is arguably one of the more recognizable voices of radio. While his peers participated in sports and other extra-mural activities, the qualified chemical engineer was drawn to another type of entertainment, when he became part of the pioneering team on to take the formerly named campus radio station, TUT FM off the ground. ”I played basketball for a while, but I found myself more drawn to this radio thing,” Mokwele says. That was the beginning of a relationship with radio that has to date produced good fruit. Mokwele, along with others such as the current Kaya FM managing director, Greg Maloka and Ashifa Shaba were the group that got TUT licensed under IBA as a community radio station.
After graduation from TUT, Mokwele along with several other big names such as Oskido were taken in for an internship at Y-fm. From then on he was headhunted by the then station manager, Romeo Khumalo, and went on to work for Metro FM for six years, before moving on to Kaya FM.
One only needs to listen to T-Bose a few times to realize that his love for music extends to more than just playing it on air. Apart from organizing very successful Thandiswa Mazwai concert during his time at Metro FM, Thabo has to date produced six albums, including house compilation albums such as Night Pulse ad C-Ndo’s album, the more recent one being the neo-soul compilation called, Hidden Hits.
One other notable change that we have found in Mokwele’s career is his ability and willingness to move between radio and television, marring the lines between the two media with ease.
The man with an undeniably contagious laugh, who is famous for coaxing giggles and truths from artists and callers alike, currently hosts Top 10 at 10: My life in music show on Mzansi Channel. On this show T-Bose gets artists and public figures such as his first guest on the show- Julius Malema to open up about more than just their careers, about their lives and the music that has touched them. A concept such as this one isn’t completely new to televison audiences, as we’ve found shows such as Expresso on SABC 3 collaborate with Heart FM in the Heart FM breakfast show, to mentiion one.
Mokwele is no stranger to television, as he hosted an SABC 2 show called Kgotlha. He states that” the studio setting makes for a much admired touch as radio audiences have always wanted to be able to see what it is that goes on in studio, and see the expressions on the interviewees faces as they respond to the bantering and coaxing”, says T-Bose.
Whether or not this radio host, is ready to banish the stereotypes put up about radio hosts with the infamous, ‘face-for-radio’ saying is, as put by the man himself, “out for the jury to decide.”