When he’s not flying high in the sky, Dennis Otukile aka D-Axis is soaring in the studio, cooking up monster hits with the likes of Motlha, FME and Bang Gae.
The DJ-cum-producer-cum-pilot is also a dedicated entrepreneur and has earned a place as one of the Forbes 30 under 30 delegates. Let’s meet the man behind the mask…
Who is D-Axis?
I am a 25-year-old music producer, DJ, event organiser and pilot. I am from Mahalapye, was born in Gaborone but I’m currently based in Pretoria, South Africa.
Why the mask?
I want to separate the DJ from the pilot. It is also a manner of preserving my brand as a pilot.
How and when were you introduced to music?
I was introduced to the music industry by Lotta MG. However, I became more engaged in it when I became a resident DJ at Yarona FM during the early stages of my career in 2018.
Do you have a musical background?
I wouldn’t say so because I come from a family of pilots and tour designers which is why I ended up going into Aviation and Travel and Tours.
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On my own I developed a liking for music and ended on this path. I brag about being a self-taught pianist, drummer and music composer.
Which artists have you worked with in the past?
My peak was in 2020 during the pandemic because I was introduced to many big artists which birthed a number of collaborations. I even got nominated for the BOMU awards under Best Dance Album.
I have worked with Motlha, Mapetla, Amantle Brown, Zeus, Mjamaica, FME, Bang Gae, Chrispin The Drummer, Mingo, Baxon, Bafana Ba and have recently been exposed to artists like Musa Keys and Lady Du.
Quite the cast! So why did you decide to move away?
South Africa has always proven in statistics to bring more opportunities and better education which is why I chose it to further my Aviation and music career. Botswana is amazing regarding music but SA has more numbers and diversity. Most of my streams come from South Africa.
Tell us about becoming a Forbes delegate?
Just to put it out there, this is my second time. Being nominated again as a delegate is humbling as it continues to show growth in what I do. Besides music, which is what I am known for, in ‘private’ I also run a cargo company with my dad, who is also a pilot.
I have another business in event organisation and I am a Marketing Manager for a Travel agency. Music is a hobby that keeps me loose and refreshes my mind.
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What would you say makes a good song?
The ability to make a person rewind or repeat. A good song, regardless of what genre it is, moves a crowd, either by evoking emotions or getting them to physically move to it. I use the audience’s reaction to grade my productions.
What is the most trouble you’ve ever gotten into?
I am a good human being, good to my people, good to my environment, so I never make any trouble.
Who is winning the EPL this season?
I do not even have to think about this one! My team, Man City is taking it; one name: Haaland, full stop!
Five things people don’t know about you?
1. I ghost produce some amapiano hits we dance to
2. I love flying planes more than music. Music is great for Instagram and vibes but when I am alone, instead of viewing Kabza De Small’s stories I watch Pilot Vlogs. But I love them both!
3. I have 7 siblings
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4. My favorite Motswana artist and friend is Mapetla
5. I was a dual citizen of SA, ZIM and Botswana and chose Botswana because of its sponsorship advantages when excelling