ROBIN THIRD FLOOR IS PUTTING DURBAN HIP HOP ON THE MAP
By Sthandwa Gwala
Robin Third Floor, also known as Simphiwe Nyawose, was born and bred in Umlazi and he is taking Durban over by storm.
The talented 22 year old BCom graduate of the University of Zululand comes from a humble family and is an only child.
“People are surprised when I tell them I was raised by a single parent on a domestic worker’s wage. I’m not ashamed because it proves that anybody from any background can have dreams and pursue them, “said Nyawose.
He started practising music at the age of 13 in 2008 and he says he’s never stopped since.
His music career began when a friend of his challenged him to write a full song with his own lyrics. He had a song book which he used to write music at the time.
He rose to the challenge and the song received critical acclaim.
His friends then encouraged him to record the song in a professional studio, and the rest is history.
He uses the phrase “retro funk” to describe his music. He has a unique kasi-based style, and a sound that is influenced by old school alternative classics, which he infused with English and vernacular rhymes. He says his music is uniquely his, and it cannot be duplicated.
Nyawose is highly inspired and motivated by his mother Ma-Nyawose. He says his mother is everything to him. Her spiritual strength is remarkable and he says he would be proud if he grew to ever be half the person that she is.
He says God has blessed his hustle and will continue to do so. One thing he does not admire about the underground hip hop scene in Durban is that aspiring musicians still face the problem of local promoters not having faith in their work. He suggests that they should put their money where their mouth is.
Nyawose has received overwhelming love and support for his latest project “Sounds Empty Pockets Make EP” and “Sounds Empty Pockets Make Deluxe Edition”. His accolades include the tracks confessions and fly away topping the hip hop charts on local radio stations like Gagasi fm, iNanda fm and Ukhozi fm.
He was nominated for 5 Original Material Awards and his songs Confessions and Fly Away featured on the SABC 1 youth drama Mutual Friends which airs at 20:30 every Wednesday.
He says the hard copy sales of his EP have exceeded his expectations. He worked with KZN based artists like DJ Bux, Joe Da MC, Nick Pro Flow and Black Moses to mention a few.
Apart from music he enjoys playing video games, chilling with his friends, reading and play the occasional game of street soccer.