Cassper Nyovest

Cassper Nyovest (Refiloe Maele Phoolo) is a South African rapper, recording artist and record producer.  He began his music career in 2004 with a hip hop group called Childhood Gangsters (CHG) and later gained mainstream fame with his 2013 single “Gusheshe”, 2014 single “Doc Shebeleza” and 2014 release of his debut album titled Tsholofelo.

Cassper Nyovest
Born Refiloe Maele Phoolo
December 16, 1990
Montshiwa, Mafikeng
North West
South Africa
Known As Cassper Nyovest
Occupation Rapper, Songwriter
Record Producer
Genre Hip Hp, Motswako
Since 2004 – to date
Label Family Tree
Associated Acts Anatii, Chad Da Don
Ganja Beatz, HHP
Riky Rick
Major League DJz
Young Slugz
Agent Unknown
Website Unknown

Cassper Nyovest  was Refiloe Maele Phoolo in Montshiwa in Mafikeng (Mahikeng) in the North West province of South Africa.

He had a big brother, Khotso Motebang Phoolo, who passed away in 2003 – he was also a rapper and served as an inspiration to Cassper Nyovest becoming a rapper as well..

Cassper Nyovest has a little sister, Tsholofelo, after whom his debut solo album is named.

He went to Sol Plaatje Secondary School in Mafikeng in the North West province of South Africa, however, Cassper Nyovest did not matriculate – he failed his grade 10 which prompted him to leave Mafikeng for Potchefstroom.

In Potchefstroom Cassper Nyovest lived with his grandmother, it is understood that there he made an attempt to continue schooling but later decided to drop out of high school to pursue a music career.

“I told my parents that I’d rather chase my dream, which I believe is going to work out, rather than keeping it safe and regret it my whole life” Cassper Nyovest has been quoted saying.

Cassper Nyovest began making inroads into the music industry in 2004 as a member of a hip hop group called Childhood Gangsters (CHG), it is understood that the group has since disbanded.

That same year he joined another hip hop group, Slow Motion. In that group he was one of eight member which included producer Ganja Beatz of “Feel D” Dream Entertainment.

In 2006, 16 at the time, Cassper Nyovest dropped out of high school and relocated to Johannesburg to pursue a music career.

In 2007 ahead of his 17th birthday he was signed to the Motswako independent record label, Impact Sounds.

It has been claimed that at the time Impact Sounds enjoyed great influence within Motswako, it’s artists included Tuks Senganga and Morafe.

Cassper Nyovest spent two years with Impact Sounds, the record label failed to release an album for him during this period and this prompted his departure, the establishment of his record label called Press Play Music and the return to Potchefstroom.

A few months later he wrote a song “Holla at a Pantsula” to a beat by producer ‘DJ Hypnosis’ which samples the Grove Washington’s song “Just the 2 of Us” featuring Bill Withers.

The song’s success helped get Cassper Nyovest the attention of the music industry he needed to jump start his music career that – at the time – seemed to have hit a snag.

Among those whose interest was piqued was South African hip hop artist, Hip Hop Pantsula (HHP), that Cassper Nyovest idolized growing up and he (HHP) is also originally from Mafikeng.

HHP featured Cassper Nyovest on the song “Wam tseba Mtho” from his Dumela album.  He joined HHP’s “Wam Tseba Mtour” which put him at stages across South Africa.

In December 2011 Cassper Nyovest toured with HHP and Tuks to the United Kingdom (UK)  performing in Camden, London and Milton Keyes.



2013 – to date

In 2013 Cassper Nyovest released “Gusheshe” the first official of his debut album titled Tsholofelo. “Gusheshe” was relatively successful and it’s music video later which premiered on Vuzu’s V-Entertainment.

Tsholofelo Album CoverThe second official single, “Doc Shebeleza”, was released and became a hit. “Doc Shebeleza” earned critical acclaim and praise across various music quarters in South Africa.

On July 3, 2014 ahead of the release of Cassper Nyovest’s debut album, Tsholofelo, a third official single, “Phumakim” was released.

In July, 2014 Cassper Nyovest released his debut album titled Tsholofelo.The album was not a critical as such, however, a financial success.

Tsholofelo peaked at number 1 on iTunes South African albums chart and remained there for two consecutive months before being knocked off the top by Duncan’s Street Government.

In the album Cassper Nyovest enlisted the help of of numerous artists, namely: Tshego, Ntukza, Kyle Deutschmann, iFani, Uhuru, HHP, PRO, Okmalumkoolkat, Anatii, Riky Rick, Buccie, KayGizm, Bass, Skales and Masterkraft.

Tsholofelo contains nineteen tracks; eighteen songs and one skit . Cassper Nyovest is credited as the writer (Refiloe Maele Phoolo) on each and every single one of the songs on the album, however, he is not credited as the sole writer of all of them.

Furthermore, he served as one of the producers of the album as well as executive produced the album.

Cassper Nyovest has since released a new single post Tsholofelo titled “Beef”, it is understood that the song is partly in response to his ongoing feuded with fellow rapper AKA.

As of December 2014 it is understood that Cassper Nyovest remains unsigned (to no major record label) and has to date achieved all his success through his own independent label called Family Tree.

It is also understood that he has enjoyed assistance and guidance from legendary South African musician and DJ, Oskido, of Kalawa Jazmee.

In February 2015 Cassper Nyovest was nominated for seven (7) Metro FM Music Awards.

At the 14th Annual Metro FM Music Awards ceremony held on Saturday night of February 28, 2015 at Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre (Durban ICC) hosted by Minnie Dlamini and T-Bo Touch Cassper Nyovest went on to win four (4) out of seven of those nominations, he also won the fifth Metro FM Music Award in a new special category, Listener’s Choice.




Year Title Label Notes
2014 Tsholofelo Family Tree, Kalawa Jazmee Records, Universal Music SA Debut Studio Album



Feud with AKA

In April 2014 Cassper Nyovest made claims on Twitter that his hit song, “Doc Shebeleza”, the second official single of acclaimed debut album – Tsholofelo – was the biggest song in the country.

AKA, undoubtedly one of the biggest names in South African and African hip hop as well as in the local music industry in 2014, did not take agree with these claims.

AKA tweeted “#1 on iTunes… Not on Zippyshare… Know the difference…”, he followed up with another tweet “Thought I’d post this…. Just ti remind you who you f****** with…”

Cassper Nyovest responded to AKA‘s tweets with some of his own “You’re lying n****!!! #DocShebeleza is the biggest record out!!! That’s not an opinion!!! That’s a fact!!! You’ve got Napoleon Complex!!!”

Cassper Nyovest continued “We must be happy for you when you win but we must morn [sic] when we win against you? fack daht!!”

“The #CaraCara and #DocShebeleZA videos had more hype than the #SAMA20. Am I lying?”

For a while their feud was known to be nothing more than nasty exchanges on Twitter, which is nothing unheard of.

On July 3, 2014 ahead of the release of Cassper Nyovest’s debut album, Tsholofelo, a third official single, “Phumakim” was released. “Phumakim” is a Zulu phrase (‘Phuma’ – ‘Kimi’) which loosely translates to leave me alone and in the song, “Phumakim”, Cassper Nyovest took lyrical jabs at AKA.

On August 15, 2014 Cassper Nyovest and AKA were invited to perform on SABC 1’s DJ Warras, Pearl Thusi and Luthando Shosha hosted Live AMP – however – both of them did not perform after it was reported that one of the members AKA’s entourage threatened Cassper Nyovest with a gun.

“The incident involved one of AKA’s entourage members’, known as Prince Nyembe, threatening Cassper Nyovest with a firearm and AKA assaulting Cassper’s Road Manager, Tshepo Seone better known as ‘Spike’,” a statement by Cassper Nyovest’s PR company, African Star Communications, read.

On August 16, 2014 Cassper Nyovest reportedly laid charges against Prince Nyembe.

In November 2014 he released a new single titled “Beef” where he further addressed his feud with AKA, however, in that song he also took a swipe at AKA’s known associate, K.O (Ntokozo Mdluli), of Teargas fame.


  • 2014 SA Hip Hop Awards

In December 2014 the Annual South African Hip Hop Awards were held; there AKA and Cassper Nyovest were seated within an arm reach of each other.

AKA took the opportunity to taunt Cassper Nyovest who did not respond to the abuse. AKA also took the conversation to Twitter, “Niggas talk s**t about you all year then can’t say a word to you when they two seats away …..,” he tweeted.

“I been chirping him all night. We don’t need diss tracks, I’m right here and he [Cassper Nyovest] star struck,” AKA tweeted.

Although AKA‘s behaviour earned him some support from his fans, he also came under some criticism and was described as a bully – especially after Cassper Nyovest did not react to his provocation.


  • Reconciliation

On December 24, 2014 six (6) days after the 2014 South African Hip Hop Awards incident; AKA and Cassper Nyovest reportedly reconciled.

AKA and Cassper NyovestThe news broke just as the #squashed was beginning to trend on Twitter in South Africa.

The pair took to Twitter and Instagram posting a picture of them taken at poolside.

AKA posted the picture with a caption, “#Squashed #MerryChristmas”.

While Cassper Nyovest posted the same picture with a caption, “#SuperMega #GoldenBoy #WeGood”.

The news of their reconciliation received wide coverage on social media but was hardly covered by mainstream media who  had extensively covered their quarrels.



The 2014 MTV Base Hottest South African MC List, “Beef”, K.O and the Apology

In November 2014 MTV Base released a list of South Africa’s hottest MC’s for the years 2014, in that list K.O was ranked number 1, Cassper Nyovest – number 2 and AKA – number 3, the others were; Khuli Chana (4), Ricky Rick (5), Reason (6), Kid X (7), Da L.E.S. (8), Kwesta (9) and Maggz (10).

Beef, Cassper NyovestIn his November 2014 single titled “Beef”Cassper Nyovest says “I’m cool with number 2 because I’m richer than number one” – referring to the list that put him at number 2 and claiming that he is richer than K.O (Ntokozo Mdluli).

Cassper Nyovest later apologized to K.O for the unwarranted disrespect

“That line on beef about K.O was childish and unnecessary”.

“I said it to discredit the list but I ended up disrespecting my brother. K.O has shown me nothing but respect and love even after what I said and I feel so much shame for not thinking it through. I ended up creating so much animosity amongst my peers and I forgot that I am now a leader and I have to lead with dignity and maturity. That is why I am putting myself in the fire again to say, I was wrong. I let rumours get to me but I am willing to own up and admit it. Sometimes hiphop must be put aside & we should remember that we are brothers. I am sorry & I pray I will be completely forgiven someday” as reported by the Sunday World.



Personal Life

Cassper Nyovest was in a relationship with South African actress and television personality Boitumelo “Boity” Thulo.

Cassper Nyovest and Boitumelo ThuloAlthough Cassper Nyovest is originally from Mafikeng he also lived in Potchefstroom  where Boitumelo Thulo is from.

In the 2014 interview with Heat Magazine, talking about his relationship with Boitumelo Thulo, Cassper Nyovest was quoted saying “I f***** up and wish I could mend things. But it’s not really in my power, I’ve never loved anybody like that. Boity is amazing. With her it was really emotional”.

Furthermore, it is understood that the relationship existed prior to Boitumelo Thulo becoming a powerhouse name that she is today, however, the pair remain close friends.

In 2014 in the wake of his feud with AKA, Cassper Nyovest expressed his displeasure at a Twitter user who mentioned Boitumelo Thulo in a tweet.

Cassper Nyovest has long been rumoured to be in a relationship with Swazi actress and television personality Amanda du-Pont. The pair has continually and consistently denied being romantically involved and continue to insist that they are friends. In his single, “Phumakim”, Cassper Nyovest says “If she ain’t no Amanda du-Pont, she ain’t tailored for me”.

Cassper Nyovest and Amanda du-PontOn Saturday November 29, 2014 during a live televised 2014 Channel O Africa Music Video Awards – held at the Nasrec Expo Centre in Soweto, Johannesburg in Gauteng, South Africa – Cassper Nyovest and Amanda du-Pont kissed during their award presentation segment.

They essentially created an instant frenzy on the social networks as their kiss seemed to be the dominating news coming out of Nasrec, at least on social networks.

The Sunday papers reported briefly on the kiss, presumably for lack of comments or confirmation from the pair. However, on Monday December 1, 2014 fresh reports emerged claiming that the kiss was the confirmation of the romantic relationship.

Cassper Nyovest and Boity Thulo at MTV MAMA 2015 in Durban KwaZuluOn Thursday December 4, 2014 Amanda du-Pont once again claimed that they are not in a relationship, they are simply good friends, in an interview with the Sowetan she was quoted saying “He has never been shy to show admiration to me but I don’t think he wants me. I am an entertainer and I entertain people. That is just what I was doing. I am an actress and I am passionate about acting. I mean even if I was in relationship, it doesn’t work to put it out there unless it’s marriage”.

On July 16, 2015 Cassper Nyovest surprised Boitumelo Thulo on the set of her new campaign for Legit which she was shooting in Mpumalanga. He then asked her to officially be his girlfriend. Cassper Nyovest was later quoted saying, “The truth is ever since we broke up I never got over her. I would literally think of her every day. It has always been my dream to get her back and yeah, I followed my dream and heart.”

While Boitumelo Thulo was quoted saying, “I don’t want to do this with anyone ever again. This is it. I am absolutely in love.” On July 18, 2015 the couple attended the 2015 MTV Africa Music Awards together in the city of Durban in the KwaZulu-Natal province