When Kiddo CSA recorded ‘Blessed’ in the studio, it was a recollection and culmination of the moments that made up his time freestyling on social media, fragments of self-doubt and the practice of honing faith in himself and in a force much more significant than him. The rapper has made it a point to divulge his inner monologues and reflect on his personal observations with his music, this is why his work is engaging and pertinent.
As a fan-favorite on his sophomore EP So Far, So Great, ‘Blessed’ now sits at over 100K streams across platforms, and to celebrate this Kiddo has dropped visuals to the tropical, Western-African tune with featured artist Blaqbonez making an appearance. The video reveals just how far Kiddo has come in his artistry and storytelling. Set in his hometown Benoni, east of Johannesburg, the visuals echo the ambition of the song – the quest for a softer life, the embodiment of this ease, and the commitment to keep reaching for more, both in and out.
The video begins with the rapper engulfed by generous and plush foliage as he affirms ‘Said I got it all alright and I praise God / Wake up and do it all again ‘cause it’s our job / I never lose I get what’s mine ‘til I’m on top / Penning over these thoughts imma get it all in due time’. As the scenes move along the green landscape in Benoni to Lagos, Nigeria, and back to Kiddo’s family home, one gets the sense that the rapper has been quite clear on the path he’s set out to achieve. Kiddo exists and persists in the evolving South African musical terrain while also living in his imagination of what an international career might look like – evidenced in his ability to draw the attention of international artists (first Mick Jenkins and now Blaqbonez).
Over the past few years, new wave Hip-Hop in South Africa has seen an influx in young rappers who are as skilled in lyricism as they are in musicality. They understand how to build a song, and how to move through each chord and each bar while also being empathetic to the pocket and how far along it propels them. Kiddo CSA is one such rapper and, through practice and talent, has been able to tap into a new frequency of sound and creativity, so much so that it almost surprises him as he raps on ‘Blessed’, ‘Young black and blessed / I’m conflicted on what to do next’. So Far, So Great was just the beginning of the scope of the rapper’s vision of the bulbous career he is formulating for himself as he considers what his next move is. With a new music video, a Cotton Fest performance this week, and new music on the way, 2023 seems to be a year full of wins for an East Rand kid who has his sights set on the world.