At the height of its popularity in the 1990s and early 2000s, kwaito was enjoyed by young Black people as dance music. Although kwaito has been one of the most popular music genres in post-1994 South Africa, it has generally been perceived as a genre lacking political content. Writer and former arts editor Sandile Memela once described kwaito as “music with no meaning or purpose” that glorifies “thuggery and self-abuse”. The problem with such simplistic dismissals is that they miss the alternative subjectivities and potentially subversive identity politics at play in this music. There are different conceptions of kwaito, but we contend that this music is not a priori meaningless or useless, as most people seem to think.