Gaba Cannal
Birth nameKhaka Yena
BornDaveyton, South Africa
OriginEastern Cape, South Africa
  • Record producer
  • DJ
InstrumentsPiano, keyboard, vocals
Years active2015–present
LabelsGaba Cannal Music Pty-Ltd
Associated acts

Khaka Yena, known commonly by his stage name Gaba Cannal, is a South African music producer and DJ. His music production is known for his soulful house take on Amapiano.[1] His name "Gaba Cannal" when roughly translated into Portuguese, means "Let It Be".[2]

Early life and education

Gaba Cannal was born in Daveyton, Gauteng but he later moved to the east of Johannesburg, where he completed his schooling and ventured into music production.[3] He Studied at Siyalakha Christian School then later moved to the east of Johannesburg were he grew up and finished matric in Fumana High School.[2]


He started producing music at the age of eighteen and started out his music career as a hip hop producer and a pianist.[4] In 2014, he released his EP titled, Abundance which opened ways for him in the industry and in that same year he created his own independent record label, Gaba Cannal Music Pty-Ltd.[5]

In 2018, he was featured on the single Magic by Da Kruk, which was nominated in the 2018 South African Music Awards, for Best Underground Record of the Year.[6]

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In 2020, he collaborated with South African singer, Busiswa on his single Umhlaba Wonke.[7] That same year he released his album, Amapiano Legacy.[1] On August 2020, his single Hold On ranked No. 10 on Good Hope FM's SA House Music Top 10 Chart.[8]

He has performed on stages alongside local musicians such as Vinny Da Vinci, DJ Ganyani, Nastee Nev, DJ Clock, LinQ, MFR Souls, Giggs Superstar, KoJo Akusa,Mzee,Julian Gomes, Javaman, The Brawl, Noxolo, Mobi Dixon, Jenerik Soul, Tim White, DJ Christos, Tokzen Mthi and DJ Terrance, as well as international acts such as Ralf GUM, Andy Campton and Nick Holder and also toured in countries such as Eswatini.[9]

On 25 November 2020, he revealed the release date for his upcoming album Statement and the official cover art for the project.[10]

Awards and nominations

Year Award ceremony Prize Result
2018 Dance Music Awards South Africa Best Underground Record of the Year Nominated[11]


  • Abundance EP (2014)
  • Between Emotions EP (2018)[3]
  • Injabulo EP (2018)[3]
  • Suit And Tie II EP (2019)[12]
  • Amapiano Love Affair (2020)[13]
  • Amapiano Legacy (2020)[1]
  • Suit & Tie Episode III EP (2020)[14]
  • Great I Am (2020)[15]
  • Statement (TBA)


  1. ^ a b c "ICYMI: Gaba Cannal Blurs The Lines Even Further With New Project 'Amapiano Legacy'". Zkhiphani. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  2. ^ a b "Gaba Cannal with ur #LunchTymMix on BestBeatsTv". Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  3. ^ a b c "NEW MUSIC ALERT: Gaba Cannal Drops Two EP's In One Night". Zkhiphani. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  4. ^ "Intoxicating new genre is here to stay". Sowetan Live. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  5. ^ "House Music Artist:Gaba Cannal". Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  6. ^ "Black Coffee, Distruction Boyz lead Dance Music Awards nominations". Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  7. ^ "Gaba Cannal Enlists Busiswa in New Amapiano Banger 'Umhlaba Wonke'". Okay Africa. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  8. ^ "SA House Chart". Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  9. ^ "URBAN ENTERTAINMENT TO BRING THREE TOURS IN ESWATINI". Swazi Observer. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  11. ^ "And The Dance Music Award Nominees Are!". People Magazine. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  12. ^ "Amapiano Aficionado Gaba Cannal Drops A Second Installment Of Suit And Tie EP". Zkhiphani. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  13. ^ "Gaba Cannal And Zano Finally Release Their Joined EP Amapiano Love Affair". Zkhiphani. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  14. ^ "GABA CANNAL RELEASES THE "SUIT & TIE EPISODE III" EP". Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  15. ^ "GABA CANNAL PREMIERES GREAT I AM ALBUM". Retrieved 27 November 2020.

External links

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