South Africa’s music scene is known for its diversity and richness, producing a plethora of musical talents who leave their mark on the world. One such rising star is The Arkeytect, a Johannesburg-born Capetonian, whose musical journey started in the heart of the church choir. Self-taught and inspired by his brother, he embarked on a journey that led him to master drums and keys, setting the stage for his extraordinary talent.

We delve into the world of The Arkeytect, exploring his musical roots, influences, and the evolution of his unique style. We also take a closer look at his latest creation, ‘Sthandwa Sam,’ a track that promises to captivate audiences and potentially revolutionise South Africa’s music landscape.

Diverse Background and The Arkeytectural Sound

The Arkeytect’s musical journey began in Johannesburg, a city known for its vibrant culture and music scene. He shares, “My musical journey began in the heart of my community – the church choir. Back in 2008, I started playing the drums, entirely self-taught. Alongside my brother, who was a talented pianist, I ventured into piano playing as well.” It’s clear that his family played a significant role in nurturing his musical interests. “My parents cherished gospel tunes, while my siblings explored genres like RnB, house, jazz, and reggae. This rich tapestry of musical exposure within my family greatly influenced my musical journey,” he explains.

The Arkeytect

The Arkeytect’s diverse musical background has become the cornerstone of his current style. He describes it as having a “musical spice rack filled with unique flavours.” He has blended gospel and jazz chords with his own creative flair, resulting in what he calls “The Arkeytectural Sound.” He elaborates, “My sound is like architecture in music, combining carefully selected drums, chords, vocals, and other production elements.”

The Birth of “The Arkeytect”

The transition from being part of a band to becoming a solo artist was prompted by external circumstances, particularly the challenges posed by the pandemic. The Arkeytect’s band, MusicalGenesis, faced difficulties due to COVID-19, with members having to relocate to different places. “As a solo artist, I continued to hone my individuality and sound,” he shares. However, he also acknowledges the valuable experience gained from being part of the band, which exposed him to diverse audiences and helped develop his stage presence.

In 2017, The Arkeytect ventured into studying architectural technology, ultimately graduating as a professional architectural technologist. The name “The Arkeytect” was born from the fusion of his two passions — architecture and music. “I’m a keyboard player,” he explains, “Hence the ‘Ar-key-tect.’ It’s a fusion of my professional background in architecture and my love for music.”

Collaborations and Growth

Music production has become a significant part of The Arkeytect’s career, and he has had the privilege of collaborating with a multitude of local talents in Cape Town. These collaborations have expanded his network, enhanced his stage presence, and exposed him to different creative personalities. He mentions some of the artists he’s worked with, including Abeluw, Kila G, KhiweG, Scintilla, Gemma Fassie, LUUKHANYO, and Dnemas, among others. Each collaboration has been a unique and enriching experience, making him a better producer and performer.

“Sthandwa Sam”: A Musical Love Letter

The spotlight of our conversation falls on The Arkeytect’s latest single, “Sthandwa Sam.” He gives us a glimpse into the inspiration behind this track, saying, “‘Sthandwa Sam’ is a special song inspired by the words I often speak to my significant other. The phrase ‘Sthandwa Sam’ means ‘my love’ in IsiZulu. I wanted to share the depth of my emotions with the world through this song, and it’s a reflection of genuine love and affection.”

‘Sthandwa Sam’ is described as a fusion of deep house and soul music, a unique blend that’s gaining attention. The Arkeytect shares his approach to blending these genres: “Blending deep house and soul in ‘Sthandwa Sam’ was a creative process inspired by artists like Kelvin Momo, who masterfully fuses jazz, deep house, and amapiano.” He describes the song as a musical journey meant to convey the pure and heartfelt message of love. “It’s meant to evoke emotions and take listeners on a soulful ride through its enchanting melodies and rhythms,” he adds.

South Africa boasts a rich and diverse music landscape, and The Arkeytect sees his unique style as a contribution to and potential revolutionisation of this scene. He believes in delivering quality content and rich, melodious experiences to his listeners. “By infusing live instruments and collaborating with talented vocalists, lyricists, and producers,” he says, “I intend to elevate the South African music scene, offering a unique blend of soulful and genre-defying music.”

The Creative Process

For The Arkeytect, the creative process is flexible and allows each song to have its unique journey. He often starts with a captivating drum loop or an inspiring set of chords and melodies. From there, he builds layers, experiments with sounds, and lets the song evolve organically. “It’s all about crafting a musical experience that resonates with me and, hopefully, with my audience,” he explains.

The Arkeytect

Staying Connected to Roots

With a background in gospel, RnB, soul, and hip-hop, The Arkeytect emphasises the importance of staying connected to his musical roots. He weaves these diverse influences into his signature style by embracing his roots and letting them shine through. “Staying connected to my musical roots is vital as it keeps my sound authentic and resonates with both my personal journey and the listeners’ experiences,” he shares.

Future Aspirations and Exciting Collaborations

Looking ahead, The Arkeytect’s aspirations include creating music of the highest quality that connects with people on a profound level. He plans to continue infusing live instruments into his songs and collaborating with exceptionally talented artists. He envisions his music evolving into a fusion of genres that pushes boundaries and touches the soul. “There are exciting projects and collaborations in the pipeline,” he hints, “So stay tuned for more musical adventures from ‘The Arkeytect.'”

In a musical landscape brimming with talent, The Arkeytect stands out as a true architect of sound, constructing each composition with care, precision, and a deep emotional resonance. With “Sthandwa Sam” as a testament to his creativity and passion, his future in South Africa’s music scene shines brightly, promising a musical journey like no other.


I can’t play any musical instruments or sing, so this is my contribution to the local music scene — which I love immensely. I can’t touch my toes, but that has held me back only slightly in life. My hobbies include reading, beer, bringing up Let’s Get Local when no one asked, writing, and surprising people with my pool skills. I believe somehow all of this will lead me to Dave Grohl.

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