One things for sure: Nutty Nys’ naughty ‘Nka Mo Dira’ track is warming up the nation this winter. it’s so hot it even got banned by one station! From his start as a campus DJ, Nutty Nyce has gone onto become YFM’s Music Manager and now a hit making producer in his own right. His Nutty tells S’bongile Mthembu about how it all started, how Vintage Love is the result of it all and how he’s down for whatever, except marriage!
The name Nutty Nys, how did it come about?
If I remember correctly there was a female group called Nutty Nys back in 1995 and they had a track titled ‘Down for Whatever’. I used to love that track and back than I was still a campus DJ at Vaal Tech . So from then on I decided to take the name because well, I am Nkosinathi (Mbelu) and people used to call me Nutty, then I just called my self Nutty Nys and the name has stuck on till this day.
Tell me about your upbringing. Where are you from and where did you grow up?
I was born and bred in The Vaal but I lived in Durban, Ezingolweni, with my mum for about 8 years and I returned to The Vaal for my High School and Tertiary. Then I moved here to Jo’burg when I got a job at YFM.
So how long have you been in the music scene?
I have always been involved in radio and that was back in 1995 but officially I started producing music in 1998 when I was working at YFM.
Speaking of YFM, you worked there for about 7 years, tell me, how was that experience for you?
Wow working at YFM was just awesome; it gave me the platform to network with people and get ahead. I think my being at YFM contributed to me being a producer today and doing my own music. So overall YFM taught me a lot…
Making your own music, what inspired you to do that?
Well while working at YFM (DJing on presenters shows) I was promoted to being Music Manager, and while doing that, I used to select songs that were going to be played. I dealt with music a lot which is why I decided to do my own thing.
Did you produce any other albums before Vintage Love, if so how did it go?
Actually I did produce an album which was titled House On Fire which didn’t do well and I think the reason behind that is that we didn’t market it well because at the time I knew little about music.
Did you produce anymore albums after that?
I did actually, the other ones were called In Retrospect, and the one that followed after that was YFM Presents a DJ Mix and all of these were compilations. With all those albums, the albums didn’t do well as much as I wanted them to.
And how did that make you feel?
Well music is a risky business and I knew that before I even decided to venture into it. But I didn’t let go and music is what I love so I never gave up instead it challenged me to work even more hard.
Anyway now Vintage Love is out and it’s doing well, how would you describe the sound?
Well this album is more of urban dance, deep house and has a lounge feel.
Did you produce all the tracks in your album?
I produced all the tracks in my album and on two tracks I co produced them with Tumiza and also Ahmad and Daddy.
Tell me who do you feature on Vintage Love
I featured Abe Molamo who is on ‘Nka Mo Dira’, as well as Bantu Soul, and R.J Benjamin, I remixed his song ‘Say Yeah’, I also I do a remix of Robert Carvaho’s ‘Loving You’ …
How would you describe your sound?
I wouldn’t really say that I deal with this type of genre or that one. I do love hip hop, and I work with different types of music, I do hip hop, house, soul and I fuse all of these to produce an album that is filled with lots of genres.
When you listen to the album, you sense that its house, well deep house to be exact and yet you said you do love hip hop a lot, care to explain?
Well in this album the tracks are mostly house but there are other hip hop tracks there but they are only beats, there aren’t any vocals. But in those it’s just the sound but you can hear that it’s hip hop.
Speaking of the album, the song ‘Nka Mo Dira’ which is such a major hit, tell me about it?
‘Nka Mo Dira’ simply means ‘I can do her’. It’s a funny story really. I was chilling with my friends in studio and well talking about girls and sex and all that. So as we were joking around and I told Abe Molamo; the guy who does vocals in the song to just say a few things while recording and well he just talked about what we were talking about earlier but in Sesotho and of course him being a poet, everything just flowed.
The song being big, how did that make you feel, did you think the track was going to be that big?
Wow! I didn’t really expect the song to be that huge, it’s a good track yes but I wasn’t really expecting such a huge response. When ever I play the songs in clubs or wherever, the crowd goes crazy. So it’s really great to hear that people love my track and it means that I am doing a good job.
Is it true that a station in Lesotho banned it and what reason did they give?
Yes it is true, they said the song was too sexual and all that but I still say its not. The song is just talking about what people are doing in their everyday lives and to prove that the song wasn’t sexual at all, the stations in Lesotho are playing it now. It’s no longer banned
Did you expect the song to be so controversial?
Well the song is not controversial at all; it’s just that some people will say it is because of their own personal reasons. People sing about this kind of stuff everywhere and all the time. Just because I said it in Sesotho than suddenly it’s a problem for some people but I think there is nothing wrong with this song and people love it.
Your album is titled Vintage Love, how did you come up with the title and why?
The album celebrates love and being alive. When you listen to the album, you will hear that the tracks carry on about love and well lust…..
I hear you’re in studio recording, tell me about that
I am in studio but not recording my own album, I have taken 3 artists and working with them to produce their albums but at the moment I don’t want to reveal who they are and the type of genres they do. Call it element of surprise if you may. ..
What are you hoping for in the future…
I am hoping to get my company off the ground and hopefully be one the biggest recording companies in the country and well I should think I won’t be married too…
And why not?
Well because I believe I wouldn’t have found the right girl yet and plus being a bachelor is nice and I enjoy it. So married life, eish, I don’t see that happening anytime soon.