Written by Ada Uzoije
One of South Africa’s finest and multi-award winning singer Tshedi Mholo blew fans away with her first solo performance in the UK
The lead singer of the famous South African group Malaika has launched herself as a solo artist to thousands of her fans living in the UK. Zimlink’s media team: Simba Chioto (Producer), Zac Darkes (Director), Ada Uzoije (Writer) and Jeong Jung (Presenter) were given the honour of documenting Tshedi’s UK gig at La Reference nightclub in Birmingham on Saturday night, 17th January 2015.
Earlier at the Holiday Inn hotel in Birmingham, UK where she was staying, the Zimlink media team excitedly set up in readiness for an exclusive interview with Tshedi. Dressed in her signature African attire, the songstress arrived on schedule with her personal assistant. I can personally testify that she is indeed a beautiful lady with a strong presence that filled the room and created a great deal of anticipation within my media team and others present in the interview room.
Sitting from an angle and observing the unfolding interview, I shifted into my writing mood and began to take notes for this highly anticipated Zimlink article. Firstly the interviewer complimented Tshedi about her vibrant traditional outfit, and in a proud but humble manner her response was, “Thank you… I am so much African, I love the colourful things. This represents me.”
Tshedi further revealed why she had become a solo artist. She said, “As an individual, there is a point in time when you want to grow and develop yourself. It’s an opportunity to take… for me, it’s an achievement. I have a dream; to be able to speak my mind… the world is changing politically and economically.” (Tshedi was emphasising the need for a positive change in oneself, in line with the inevitable changes happening within our world.)
The singer elaborated on how difficult it has been sidestepping from the band that she loves so much. She has experienced both negative and positive comments from people over her decision to launch a solo career, away from the group that has won many awards in the past. Tshedi remembered being told several times, by disapproving individuals, that she would never find success as a solo artist. But, being a woman who has always been a motivator, either in her role as a mother to her children, a teacher to her students or a charity worker, encouraging youths and women experiencing domestic violence to develop themselves and pursue their dreams, Tshedi Mholo was never going to stop practicing what she preaches. So she has indeed become a solo singer and the reception has been warm so far. Tshedi’s optimism about her solo career is summarised by her catchphrase, “I’m a Winner.”
Tshedi’s musical career is rooted in her early childhood experiences. She entered many music competitions which she often won. It was at one of these competitions that she realised she was not just a singer; she was truly gifted in the art of expression. The talented singer is now being her true self. She wants to continue using her ‘powerful voice’ to reunite the nation with the inspiring messages that she can convey through her songs while continuing to deliver quality music to her devoted and ever-increasing fan base.
“I’m not perfect, I have my own faults,” Tshedi commented on her journey as a solo artist. “Nobody expected the kind of music I would be able to grasp… I found my voice… I grew from being a girl to a woman and from a woman to motherhood. For me, I am a victory woman.” For this reason, she named her first solo album ‘VICTORY’.
Just one mile away from the hotel, thousands of excited fans from all over UK have arrived at La Reference, all looking forward to an amazing performance from Tshedi. Queues of cars are parking in the streets nearby and it is only by sheer luck that my media team have managed to find a space. Inside, the club is bursting with energetic gig-lovers drinking, chatting and dancing to their most loved Afro-beats from different countries in Africa.
One hour later, Tshedi lights up the darkness as the spotlights illuminate the red carpet stage to welcome the star. The crowds cheer and clap while the artist performs some tracks from VICTORY. Effortlessly poised behind the microphone, the singer renders flawless performances of ‘Ngithembe’, ‘Bo Mme’, ‘Jeemboro ft. Fally Ipupa’, ‘Makale’, ‘Umsebenzi’ and many more.
It was a lively, dazzling and powerful 60-minute performance from Tshedi. She connected directly with the crowd who were all on the floor, dancing to her music. They desperately wanted more and she continued to deliver—a gesture stating that she had travelled all that way from South Africa just for them and they were important to her. She continued to prove this by delivering an astonishing show. She was astoundingly brilliant and the crowd loved it. They were truly blown away as they cheered, jumped and clapped while chit-chatting about their joy with their mates.
To the amazement of most fans, Tshedi had even allocated time after the show to mingle with her fans and have photos taken with them. It was a truly amazing and exciting night, and Zimlink Media were glad to be a part of it.
Become Tshedi’s fan, follow her on Facebook and Twitter.
HYPERLINK “https://www.facebook.com/tshedi.mholo.5” https://www.facebook.com/tshedi.mholo.5
HYPERLINK “https://twitter.com/tshedimholo” https://twitter.com/tshedimholo
About the Author
Ada Uzoije is a fiction novelist, specialising in crimes, psychological thrillers and paranormal stories. Ada is also a publishing manager, film editor and a passionate film reviewer. www.adauzoije.com