“Lemons (Lemonade)” by AKA & Nasty C

It has been suggested that the sentiments expressed in “Lemons (Lemonade)” were somehow influenced by the recent death of AKA’s significant other, a lady by the name of Anele Tembe. But it’d be hard for a listener to get the impression from the lyrics, since they are primarily braggadocious and money-based in nature. 

Indeed as much as we hate to say it yet again, what we’re basically dealing with here is foreign hip-hop artists imitating the standard American style. So logic would dictate that the reason hip-hop has become so universal is because people love their Jiggas or Lil Waynes or what have you, but sometimes they prefer to be treated to such characters via their respective domestic artists also. 

And as such, there does appear to be plenty of South African terminology being thrown around in this piece.

Also, this song is apparently on the verge of being a big hit or in the very least features two of the top artists from said country. In the intro AKA alludes to this being his “comeback”, which may be an allusion to the aforementioned tragedy. Furthermore, “Lemons (Lemonades)” is apparently the first new music he has come out with since 2020 (with Tembe passing away in 2021). And even AKA does his fair amount of boasting, he also uses the opportunity of his own verse to criticize people, presumably in his own land, who have been asserting that “hip-hop died”.

Nasty C steps in

Meanwhile, Nasty C really comes off like an American hip-hop artist, i.e. focusing heavily on possessing a don’t-give-AF attitude, which seems to include a lot of sexual adventurism, if you want to put it that way. And his verse also reads as if it sports bit of a more-conventional romantic undertone near its conclusion.

Song’s Title (“Lemons (Lemonade)”)

As for the title, in the chorus it is relayed in full as “lemons to lemonade”. That’s an expression commonly used to point to the idea of a person doing his or her best with the hand they’ve been dealt in a particular situation or in life generally. 

Maybe that assertion too, on the part of AKA, was somehow inspired by the death of Anele Tembe. But again, there is nothing in these lyrics that seem to point to a sentiment of mourning or anything like that.  To the contrary, the emotional emphasis seems to rather be along the lines of living life to the fullest, though backed by a phat bank account, of course.

Lyrics to "Lemons (Lemonade)" by AKA & Nasty C

Nasty C and AKA

Both of the artists on this track are South Africans. The headliner, AKA, has been musically active since the early aughts. And it would appear that for about the last decade leading up to the release “Lemons” i.e. since the time his discography commenced, he has been one of the most-pertinent musicians in his part of the world. 

The aforementioned Anele Tembe was his steady girlfriend, who fell to her death, at the age of 22, circa mid-2021. By the looks of things, what caused her to fall has yet to be officially resolved.

Meanwhile Nasty C has been doing his thing since circa the mid-2010s. He burst on the South African hip-hop scene hard at around the time with his debut LP “Bad Hair”. And by the looks of things if he manages to stay in the game as long as AKA has, he may also be on the path of earning a plethora of industry awards, as has his co-vocalist. 

Release of “Lemons (Lemonade)”

 On the 16th of September 2022, this track was released. To note, this is the first collaboration between AKA and Nasty.

This track is part of on an  AKA album titled “Mass Country”.


Nasty alongside AKA are co-writers of “Lemons (Lemonade)”.

This song’s music video was directed by one Nate Thomas.

Lemons (Lemonade)

1 Response

  1. SD* says:

    I think AKA does share something about the passing of his fiance… here is the part which I feel he is sharing something about it “Dark days, friends were few, it’s alright
    Turned that pain to fuel and survived, Oh, oh, now I’m stronger”… He must have felt that during that time friends were few.

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