Rocking The Daisies 2016 will be a testament to the beautiful sounds of the different cultures of our unique multicultural nation that is South Africa.

The protest and demand for inclusivity has moved from South Africa’s universities to the student social scene. With the announcement of the relaunch of the Tiger Tiger nightclub in Claremont came a tremendous wave of criticism of the famously racist club and the disruption of a space known to exert white privilege over the Cape Town student life. Very quickly the owners of the renowned club announced the closing of its doors. Shortly after, the attention shifted towards the famous festival, Rocking The Daisies.

Arguably one of the most anticipated events on any students’ calendar, Rocking The Daisies this year has upped their game with the announcement of the hip hop stage ‘Two’s up’. The popular music festival has faced much criticism over the years for presenting its audiences with a mainly white line-up lacking in diversity and inclusivity. Previous years have seen Rocking The Daisies boasting an environment of white privilege with indie music and flower crowns. However this year the Cloof daisy fields could be seeing a few changes.

The debate surrounding the inclusivity and diversity of a big music festival such as Rocking The Daisies gained attention through a social media movement on Facebook using the hashtag #HipHopTentRTD2016. Many lovers of the festival came together to demand an addition to this year’s line up which included a stage solely dedicated to hip hop acts. It didn’t take long for the Rocking The Daisies’ Facebook page to be flooded with #HipHopTentRTD2016, witty memes and requests of local hip hop artists. Although most were positive about the demand of a hip hop tent and a possible change to the music scene of the festival, a few stated on social media that they were not in favour of this decision. One person argued on Facebook that “It’s ROCKING the Daisies, and not HIP HOPPING the Daisies”. This resulted in the festival’s support of the movement by stating that they are by no means a ‘rock’ festival.

The hip hop genre has a long history of support for black culture and black oppression. For many years hip hop has been used by the youth to voice their concerns over their economic and social disenfranchisement all over the world. Hip hop is especially favoured among South Africans which can be seen on the charts of commercial radio stations such as 5FM after the introduction of the 90% quota by SABC. South Africa’s live music circuit does not reflect the popularity of the hip hop genre. With the addition of Two’s Up stage at Rocking the Daisies this year, South Africa’s underground hip hop industry will be able to expose themselves to the white market and unify the local music scene as well as encourage many hip hop lovers and different social groups to become a part of a once very white audience.

The addition of a new genre to the line up displays a sense of appreciation for the different cultures in our country and the people who they derive from. The directing manager of Steyn Entertainment, George Avakian who has just purchased the successful festival explained to the SA Music Scene that “Life gets cluttered with unnecessary tension between people who are different to one another. Rocking The Daisies is where we all come together for the love of music, we fill our hearts with love and party all our problems away”.

Rocking The Daisies 2016 will be a testament to the beautiful sounds of the different cultures of our unique multicultural nation that is South Africa.