Sithembiso Herimbi has been instrumental in the creation of urban South African music. This Vaal Triangle-bred producer goes by the alias, Instro. He is a key member of the Motif Records movement. Motif, which was founded by Tumi Molekane of Tumi and The Volume, is home to critically-acclaimed rapper, Reason.
In 2014, Instro produced the majority of Reason’s third album, Audio High Definition. In the same year, he produced the boundary-breaking ‘Hello Kitty Remix’ by Tumi featuring Nadia Nakai, Gigi LaMayne and Nova.
Instro played a pivotal role in the resurgence of neo-soul siren, Wanda Baloyi, when he produced her ditty, ‘Thinking.’ When newcomer, Musa, was named the winner of Idols 2013, Instro acquired production credits on the talent show victor’s first single, ‘I Still Feel It’ and produced his song, ‘Laphong’ Phuma Khona.’
This is just a taste of a smorgasbord of genre-bending skills that Instro has exhibited in the years following his graduation in Sound Engineering from the Allenby Campus in Johannesburg. Instro is both a producer and a mixing engineer. In 2012, Instro mixed 5 songs on the All Things Grey album by the multi-award- winning artist, Kabomo. Off this album, Instro produced ‘Against All Odds’ and ‘Things We Cannot Hide.’
For the 2009 South African general elections, Instro was enlisted as the producer of the critically acclaimed ‘Healing In The Land Of Forgiving’ project which saw him work with afro-jazz maestro, Ringo Madlingozi and legendary vocalist, Sibongile Khumalo.
Instro has also lent his talents to Canadian alternative soul artist, Zaki Ibrahim’s seminal album, Every Opposite. Here, he recorded the album and produced ‘Stand So Hard.’ In 2012, he mixed ‘Generation XY’ and ‘One Day’ by kwaito king, Kabelo Mabalane and mixed AKA’s ‘Jealousy’ and Kwesta’s ‘You Got It.’ He produced and engineered Nothende’s phoenix offering, Remember Love. Instro also produced ‘I Love You’ and ‘Promise Me’ off Reason’s second album, Audio 3D.
Furthermore, Instro has worked with the likes of Idols contestant, Aya Mpama, underground rapper, Mothipa, singer, Maxhoba, cutting edge rapper, Solo and recorded the likes of South African songbirds, Thandiswa Mazwai and Kelly Khumalo to name two.
After his tenure as a studio engineer at pioneering independent record label, Outrageous Records, where he worked with artists such as Zubz and Nthabi, Instro went on to release a compilation album called NASA (Now And Still After) under his own label, Promised Land Productions – which saw Reason’s first album, The Reasoning, as a major project.
Instro currently has set his sights on a new compilation which will move the state of South African music forward.