AMI FAKU; SA’S HIGHEST STREAMED FEMALE ARTIST part one

AMI FAKU; SA’S HIGHEST STREAMED FEMALE ARTIST part one

There’s something so incredibly beautiful about listening to music in your own language. For me I never really deep lyrics when it comes to songs, I just listen because I vibe with the song but listening to SA soul just does something to me, I feel every single word and so much more! So it’s no surprise that I adore Ami Faku’s voice.

I first discovered Ami in June last year whilst watching an episode of Uzalo (my favourite SA soap), her song Ubuhle Bakho played as Lindiwe walked down the aisle. It was at that moment that I knew I had found my first dance song! Regardless of where my husband is from, this will be our song, forever and always. You truly have to listen to it to understand where I’m coming from! This was the first time in a very long time that a song had brought me to tears. Her voice, the lyrics, her sound, the melodies, everything about it was just breathtaking. To this day I can’t go a week without playing the song, it’s on repeat none stop. I’m probably one of the huge reasons why she’s SA’s most streamed female artist of 2019, she’s without a doubt my most played SA female artist!

 

Ms Faku has collaborated with some of SA’s biggest and greatest musicians I.e Amanda Black, Sun el Musician and Prince Kaybee just to name a few! She released her debut album in September and the more I listened to the album the more I fall in love with her, I kid you not, this woman will probably go down as one of SA’s greatest and I honestly cannot wait for her to get the global recognition she deserves. Within the first day of her album being released, it hit #1 on Apple Music, her album was #1 in physical sales of music for 4 weeks, she had 5 songs in the Top 50 of Radiomonitor Top 200 chart of 2019 and she was the ONLY newcomer on Spotify’s top 10 most streamed female artist. Imagine all of this was achieved within the space of a few months, so imagine what she could achieve In the next 5-10 years!

I had the privilege of interviewing this incredible woman on Monday and here is what she had to say;

How does it feel to be named SA’s most streamed female artist by Deezer? How did you hear the news?

“It feels great, I keep saying all of these things are a blessing because at first, I did not think that all of this was possible so I’m very happy and grateful.

I found out whilst I was alone at my place and I called to confirm because I was like there should be a mistake but thankfully it was an actual thing and there was no mistake.”

How would you describe your music in 5 words and why have you chosen these particular words?

“Modern, Soulful, Truthful, an Experience and Quality music. Every time I think about it I would say those are the elements that my music has.”

Obviously, as an artist, you take inspiration from so many things, for example; your surroundings, life experiences and other artists. How did you discover your sound, how long did it take you and what advice would you give to other artists looking to find their own sound?

“It took time because if I look back to when I was 18 I wouldn’t have done this, I was not exposed/ around people who played live instruments but I always knew that I had this deep love for instruments and soulful music but unfortunately I couldn’t – It was just this experience of doing all these other genres to actually make this decision to say, no this is the music that I really love the most. It was just experiencing and looking at the music I connect with the most – afro soul and RnB but mostly very youthful, nothing old or anything, that’s why I incorporate youthfulness in my afro soul because it’s part of what I like so it had to be part of my music and sound.

To new artists, I would say just be sure that this is the sound that you want because it’s not easy to write on, it’s not easy to create a melody on because it sort of has to compliment cause the production is always so great so it’s quite intimidating, you have to really work hard into making sure that your delivery is just as good. Make sure you know what you want, don’t do it because everyone says you should do it and stick through what you believe in and just always be you because I am me in my writing and everything about this journey. I am fully 100% myself so I would encourage them to do the same.”

Most of your songs are related to the idea of love, is this romantic love? Have you yourself ever been in love, or are you in love right now?

“My music involves platonic love as well as romantic love, because I myself am such a lover. I express love even in songs I dedicate to friends and family so It can be however you interpret it.

I was definitely in love at some point, it’s always so weird when people ask me this, I’m like no why??? but I am grateful for the experience as it helped me to create songs that people love, so I guess it was worth something in the end, I got something out of it at least, so yeah I have been in love! My experience is very limited tho, so in order to broaden my audience I always also write in other peoples perspectives and tell their stories too.”

Vusi Nova aka Music Royalty

Vusi Nova aka Music Royalty

A few weeks ago I had the privilege of interviewing the incredibly talented Mr Vusi Nova. Vusi Nova is one of my all time favourite South African artists, his music is soulful, full of passion and it honestly makes you want to fall in love and find that one person that you want to spend the rest of your entire life with It’s that amazing! I don’t want him to sing at my wedding, I need him to! I love everything about his sound and but most importantly I love how he incorporates his  Xhosa roots in his music, his  album NANINA is 99.9% Xhosa and it is such a vibe, whether or not you understand xhosa you need to listen to it because trust me when I say that you will fall in love with this man just as I have.

Vusi  was named “Music Royalty “after he performed his song “Ndikuthandile” in front of a crowd that loved his music. The SAMA 23 came and saw the afro pop sensation being nominated and winning an award for the Nanina album. 2017 being the year for Vusi Nova, afro pop singer also won 2 awards at the South African Afro Music Awards in 2017, winning Best Afro Album and Best male.

When did you first get into music? was becoming a musician always part of the plan? 

I come from a family that was musical in a church way, it was my mom who really inspired me to pursue my dreams. My mother was my number 1 supporter and she inspired me after me joining her in JHB to start performing.

Who are your musical influences?

It would have to be R Kelly and Marvin Gaye. R Kelly has this way of fusing the old school with the new school, and that’s what I try to do in South Africa with my music as well. With Marvin Gaye, he is classic, and how he uses love in his music is amazing.

How would you describe your sound in 5 words?

Hmmm wow – Love, Life, experiences, hurt and blessings

What made you finally decide that it was time to take charge and follow your dreams of becoming a musician? 

It was my mom; she was the one who encouraged me to pursue my dreams. She always believed in me.

What inspires you when writing music because a lot of your songs revolve around love, have you yourself ever been in love?  

I am a firm believer in love, I believe in that Cliché love – love can heal the world. So the music I write is about my experiences, about love found and love lost, love for family, friends, heart ache and everything in between. That is all in my music. Oh, and I have been in love, and when I was it was blissful and amazing, that when it ended I was heartbroken. However, music is very therapeutic in that it helped me get over a lot of things. My love

What can we expect to see from your music wise in the next coming months?

I’m back in the studio now, since Naninina I have experienced life a bit more and I’m ready to express that through music as well. So I’m working on some new material.

Where do you see yourself in the next 10 years?

I’d love to be travelling all over the continent, world. I’d also love to be mentoring other artists, there are so many talented artists in SA that we haven’t discovered yet

What is your favourite song from Naninina and why? 

How can you make me choose, wow. I love my entire album, so I can’t choose one but I can try and give you my best 5 – Naninina, Ndikuthandile, Thandiwe, Impazamo and Memeza.

What is your proudest achievement so far in your career? 

Well for the first time in 2017 I won BEST AFRO POP ALBUM for my album Naninina, at the South African Music Awards (SAMAs), and at the South African Afro Music Awards, I walked away with BEST MALE and BEST AFRO Album as well which was a total shock for me. However, I must say one of the proudest moments has been mentoring 047 – this young afro soul group of boys who are incredible. They have grown so much, and they’re actually working on their first studio album. When I say Vusi has to sing at my wedding I mean it with every part of my body,

What advice would you give to all South Africans our there who want to start a career in the music industry?

It’s really not what it seems. Don’t look at the flashy cars and houses and assume that’s exactly how it will be from the get go. If music is really what you want to do, make sure you understand every aspect of the music industry, and you’re also willing to work hard.

Thank you again to Vusi for doing this interview with me! Can’t wait to see what the future holds for you!

Connect with Vusi on:

Twitter: @VusiNova

Facebook: @VusiNova

Instagram: @vusinova1