AKA has been on our charts since 2011, but 2016 may be one of his biggest years yet. Though he offered very little by way of new music this year (he gave us "Dream Work" ft Yanga, "One Time" and most recently, "The World Is Yours"), he's kept his name in the headlines right through the year. He kicked it off in January by revealing his controversial relationship with radio host and celebrity Bonang "Queen B" Matheba and just last week was named one of SA's hottest MCs.
As part of the MTV Base Roundtable: SA's Hottest MCs 2016, Cassper Nyovest was named SA's hottest MC, with MTee, Nasty C and Kwesta taking spots 2 to 4. AKA was ranked number 5. Needless to say, the rapper was not happy, taking to his Twitter account to let MTV Base know exactly how he felt.
Foetsek. https://t.co/ty3sL7HXqa— AKA (@akaworldwide) December 2, 2016
According to MTV Base, the criteria for the ranking of the list were: "impact, lyrics, sales, buzz, style and other 'intangibles' that make them stand out from the crowd". With so little music out, AKA may have lost in the "sales" category, but he's definitely been buzzing all year round.
We've noted some of Super Mega's highlights that kept his 1.3 million Twitter followers entertained this year.
JANUARY and FEBRUARY: Bae out in the open
AKA's ex and mother of his child DJ Zinhle revealed on her blog back in 2015 that he cheated on her with Matheba. But in January this year, the two took to posting pictures of each other on holiday in Mozambique, finally making their much talked about relationship official.
MARCH: Not even the news is safe
Never one to shy away from controversy, AKA was quick to call out CNN for its coverage of terrorist attacks that took place in Belgium earlier this year. In since deleted tweets, he called the news network's coverage of the killings unfair. We wish he had gone ahead and tagged them too.
- It's clear that it's not about how many people die in these terrorist attacks anymore. It's about WHERE they happen. — AKA (@akaworldwide) March 22, 2016
- CNN doesn't give a shit about dead Nigerians or Turks or Kenyans or Mali or whatever .... But Brussels & Paris, it's a big deal. — AKA (@akaworldwide) March 22, 2016
APRIL: "Shut up wena"
It is no secret that there is no love lost between Forbes and actress Pearl Thusi, most likely due to the ongoing feud between Thusi and Matheba (Thusi is also a very close friend of DJ Zinhle's). The beef between AKA and his ex's friend soon sparked a Twitter war after he tweeted about his brand new BMW, and Thusi tweeted about "people showing off".
The spat continued with Thusi tweeting: "We??? Kiernan. Grow up."
And later adding: "Why are you so sure this tweet is about you? Touched much?"
Forbes childishly retaliated with old tweets and photos of Thusi from the 2016 Metro Awards, where some mocked her "Bruce Lee hairstyle".
The two later deleted their tweets and apologised to fans for the mud-slinging.
Thank You God and Thank You to the fans for this wonderful life of mine. 🙌🏽 2016 🇩🇪 BMW X6M FULL SPEC 🔴🔵 Even though I'm feeling under the weather, this cheered me up a bit 😊 Special Thanks to my big bro @princecostinyo 😉 #RealFriends #MPower #SUPA〽️🌊⛽️🅰 #VeryRare™ #3RDWRLDBOSS ............. 2016 bro. #BOXfresh #NOGimmicks #NoGames #NoLies 🇿🇦™
MAY: The personal is political
AKA used his Twitter account to cause a stir by tweeting his support of the governing ANC three months before the country's local government elections, adding he would not perform at opposition party rallies.
"The ANC is faaaaar from perfect, but I firmly believe it's the only political party with the credentials and policies to lead our country." — @akaworldwide, 20 May 2016
Before long, after a brief sparring match on the social media site, Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema asked AKA to be clear about who he was referring to.
@akaworldwide chief if you want a fight against the EFF just come openly we are ready for you. Why generalize instead of referring to one— Julius Sello Malema (@Julius_S_Malema) May 20, 2016
Eventually, EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi and Sports and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula joined the fray too:
EFF leaders buy @akaworldwide music, play your music & been to your shows. Because its content doesn't isolate us! Now should we boycott u?— Mbuyiseni Ndlozi (@MbuyiseniNdlozi) May 20, 2016
Imagine if those artists who used their art to fight against apartheid were told— RSA Min of Sport (@MbalulaFikile) May 20, 2016
"Shut up, focus to your music"
Ngesiphi ? @akaworldwide
I for one support all our artists, despite their political affiliation @akaworldwide, all political leaders should.— RSA Min of Sport (@MbalulaFikile) May 20, 2016
Mr Supa Mega ended the discussion by stating that he was "openly ANC", and adding:
JUNE: Going global
AKA was the only African artist to take to the stage of the BET Experience alongside international heavyweights such as Snoop Dogg, Nick Cannon and Desiigner. He was also nominated in the Best International Act: Africa category for the second year running... But lost out to Black Coffee.
JULY: Sway In The Morning
One of the most popular hip-hop shows in the world, "Sway In The Morning", hosted by Sway Calloway, welcomed AKA into their studio in July. It was a big deal for the South African rapper to get such international exposure. While on air, the local rapper spoke about his awards, nominations, performances and albums. But did he represent South Africa accurately? There's an awkward moment (besides him reading his freestyle) when AKA tries to explain his decision to use the racial slur n***** over South Africa's k*****. For the conversation about the slurs, go to 17:45, when someone called Mike asks him about social issues affecting South Africa. If you don't want to suffer through it, he basically says that the words don't mean the same thing in this country, and that one needs to understand the history of apartheid to understand why the impact of k***** was different to the impact of n*****. Maybe he forgot about slavery...
AKA also touched on his long-time rivalry with Cassper Nyovest — who had previousy been on Sway's show — saying that the beef started because the two were "too similar". Before rapping freestyle, Forbes mentions that he and Cassper are fine.
SEPTEMBER: That slap
When AKA took his SupaMegaShow to Cape Town, he brought Matheba with him. Known for his fiery temperament, AKA threw a fan's phone over a balcony at the SupaMegaShow afterparty for taking sneaky photos of Matheba. He followed it with an unapologetic Twitter rant about how he won't tolerate fans taking pictures and footage without his permission.
But it wasn't all roses for Queen B and Mr Supa Mega who had fans riveted after he tweeted "I'm single", followed by a series of tweets that was most likely about a quarrel between the two. Those tweets were since deleted. In them, he went on to reveal that he was having sex on a carpet, told his "haters" to "eat shit" and apologised to Matheba, saying he loved her. After all of that, the most telling tweet was probably this one:
"No it's not goose .... It's the Hooch. (Straight up)" — @akaworldwide
Which we know is a Travis Scott lyric, but could well mean AKA wasn't completely sober when he started tweeting.
September was filled with enough ups and downs for Forbes and crew, but it wasn't complete until the infamous Black Coffee slap, which wasn't entirely AKA's fault. After an altercation at the DSTV iRock Music Festival in Polokwane between award-winning producer Black Coffee and AKA's manager, Tshiamo Letshwene, the former delivered a blow that saw Letshwene lose his balance — and sparked memes aplenty.
As if sharing all of his thoughts and feelings on Twitter wasn't enough, AKA let us in on his life on the road with a few behind-the-scenes videos posted to his Instagram account. Aptly hashtagged #LifeOnTheRoad, the clips followed the rapper on his travels between performances.
October was a month of big changes for the rapper who not only squashed beef with Nyovest, but also dropped his manager Raphael Benza. We still don't know what lead to the breakdown in the relationship, but AKA insinuated it was something "too big" to come back from.
Just a few weeks later, Forbes signed a multimillion-rand deal with Cruz Vodka — the first sponsorship deal to be signed under his new management company, Beam Group.
NOVEMBER: State of 'crooked whites'
With all of SA's eyes on the wheeling and dealing of the Gupta family and their good friends within the governing party, AKA added his voice to the political discussion about the Public Protector's State of Capture report. The ANC supporter took to Twitter to call out white-owned capital, saying: "There are a handful of white families who have owned this country for decades but we're worried about the Guptas." He then added: "Between the mines, the land, the banks and the media .... They (powerful white families) captured the state a long long time ago," IOL reports.
But once his rant was over — and with no time to get too caught up — AKA took to the stage in Durban for the first Essence Festival, held in South Africa from 8-13 November.
So, what's next?
If you're either in Durban or Cape Town for New Year's Eve, you can start 2017 with the Supa Mega himself as he takes to the stage in both cities on one night. In the meantime we'll hold thumbs 2017 has new offerings from AKA for our airwaves, instead of just our Twitter timelines.