Ghetto Ruff Records is an independent South African recording label specializing in kwaito, hip hop, and rhythm and blues. Currently, Ghetto Ruff Records is home to some of South Africa's most prominent kwaito artists including Zola, Prophets of Da City (POC), and Ishmael.


Ghetto Ruff Records came to be in the late 1980s when Lance Stehr (current Managing Director of the label) formed the Cape Town based hip hop group, Prophets of Da City.[1] POC did extremely well in South Africa as well as internationally. In many ways POC enabled Stehr to expand and grow the label into the premiere kwaito label in South Africa today. South Africa's R&B star Ishmael was born out of POC and in 1996 he helped Ghetto Ruff Records enter the kwaito genre when the group Skeem of Waar was formed.[2] Another product of POC was the acclaimed Afrikaans hop hop group Brasse Vannie Kapp. With this foundation, Stehr was able to discover and nurture numerous kwaito stars resulting in hundreds of thousands of record sales.

In addition to Stehr, the other directors and stakeholders are Zola, Ready D, and Kaybee.

In early 2006, mega kwaito star Pitch Black Afro left Ghetto Ruff Records to sign with rival record label Intyme Incl. This split is the source of strife between Ghetto Ruff and Pitch Black Afro chiefly over a promised final which Pitch Black supposedly owes to Ghetto Ruff.[3]


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References Edit

  1. 29 Feb. 2008. Ghetto Ruff Records Official Website. <>.
  2. 29 Feb. 2008. Ghetto Ruff Records Official Website. <>.
  3. 29 Feb. 2008. <,,2-1225-1242_1917459,00.html>.