Music & Apartheid

Music and the arts can be powerful tools to inform people and create change. Few people know this better than Sipho Mabuse.

Sipho ‘Hotstix’ has been making music for almost 50 years. During Apartheid, his hit song Burn Out crossed racial lines. White, black, and coloured South Africans all listened to this one song. It was the first time many white South Africans heard music from the townships. His music helped create unity in a country divided by race.

Today’s video is the music video for Burn Out. It is from 1984. Why do you think this song was able to cross racial lines? Why do you think it was popular with South Africans from every race?