Mandoza - Celebrity and Kwaito Musician -
year’s South African Music Awards may have been a
powerful reminder of the enduring power of kwaito –
but if there’s one artist who has consistently
remained faithful to the genre that spawned him,
it’s Mduduzi Tshabalala.
his extensive fanbase simply as Mandoza, the artist
has always believed in kwaito’s ability to convey
his heartfelt emotions, life experiences and those
hopes and dreams and challenges of the generation
that, like him, moved towards adulthood in first
flush of post-apartheid South Africa.
early days in seminal kwaito group, Chiskop, and
especially in his solo career, the Zola,
Soweto-raised Mandoza has also never let the musical
boundaries some link to kwaito to constrain his
creativity. You only need look at the chance he took
in creating ‘Nkalakatha’ with producer Gabi Le Roux
in the opening year of the 21st century
to understand how easily Mandoza is able to take
kwaito forward. That award-winning and evergreen hit
song made full use of rock stylings to become – and
still remain – the biggest crossover South African
hit in recent memory.
creating his 2010 album, ‘Real Deal’ Mandoza has
again remained true to kwaito’s eKasi heart whilst
taking a music adventure that sees the genre
stretched to include elements of jazz, electronica,
R&B and pop.
approach every album with the vision of making it
better than what has come before, no matter what
challenges I’ve faced in my life in the period
between records,” Mandoza confides.
the personal challenges the platinum-selling,
award-winning artist has faced in recent years
provides creative stimulation for the songwriter in
Mandoza – in particular on the nakedly emotional
say it all,” Mandoza says of the track which he
penned with Sipho Ngwenya and Ziyon, the vocalist of
the current dance hitmakers, Liquideep.