Those who have experienced the idyllic vibrations of a dance music festival can attest that if EDM is known for anything, it is that the genre is all-inclusive, pervading all areas of globe and opening its arms to all walks of life. Where the beauty of the genre really lies, though, is in its malleability. Through its many sub-genres, electronic dance music is able to be deconstructed, whittled down, and molded into a signature dish all one's own, with all the accoutrements necessary to start a movement.

Such is the case with Amapiano, a South African style of EDM that is taking the music industry by storm. A unique fusion of deep house and jazz, Amapiano emerged in South Africa in 2012 and has steadily risen to become a bona fide juggernaut. 

Artists such as Moonchild Sanelly, DJ Maphorisa, and Kabza De Small are at the forefront of Amapiano, which is quickly gaining traction on TikTok. A search of #Amapiano shows that videos containing the hashtag eclipsed 73 million views on the app, the world’s leading destination for short-form video. Boniswa Sidwaba, Content Operations Manager at TikTok Africa, said that Amapiano is benefitting greatly from the exposure of the social media behemoth. "TikTok continues to help grow the local music industry by supporting African music and genres such as Amapiano," said Sidwaba. "To promote Amapiano specifically, TikTok has a dedicated in-app playlist within the sounds page that features new and popular music."

"We do this through challenges, looking out for songs that have the potential to trend and provide resources to artists to promote their music," she continued. "These resources include adding their songs to TikTok’s playlists, featuring the artists in TikTok banners on the discovery and sound page, and promoting challenges for their songs."

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According to Sidwaba, TikTok works directly with artists and local record labels pushing Amapiano music to emblazon it on the app, which has been growing at a breakneck pace as it further establishes itself as a harbinger of the music industry. A dedicated TikTok Amapiano page was also launched on the platform's "Discover" tab, further illuminating the blossoming genre and the rich culture behind it. Sidwaba said the page will also include an "interactive in-app game" designed to galvanize TikTok creators into recording and sharing challenges on the app.

You can check out some TikTok videos featuring Amapiano below.

Credit: The South African

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