Thandiswa Mazwai - Brave, Bold and Back

By Drum Digital
28 November 2016

?DRUM met with Thandiswa Mazwai a few days before her new Album, Belede, dropped and was pleasantly surprised to find her in a relaxed mood with a humble outlook on life.

DRUM met with Thandiswa Mazwai a few days before her new Album, Belede, dropped and was pleasantly surprised to find her in a relaxed mood with a humble outlook on life, despite rumours that she is difficult diva to be around. 

“It’s funny that people consider me to be a diva when I am a very laid back person. In fact I’m such a flirt, it surprises me to have my name associated with such things,” she says.

She had to carve out her identity from a very young age. She recalls being told to by a lady in charge of wardrobe to wear a bikini and sit inside a swimming pool when she shot her first video with Bongo Muffin.

“I refused, saying, ‘I’m not the girl in the bikini. I am the girl who stands next to the guys and sings,’” she says.

It was a good move because the group emerged as a powerful trio and she was leading the pack.

“I say to other musicians, particularly women, find out who you are and stick to it. Be original and yourself. That’s the only way you will make it in this industry,” she says. “When people try to change who you are, don’t let them.”

The album is a tribute to her mother, and Thandiswa says every album has been about whatever she is going through in her life.

“I use art as a diary, a punching bag or as a place to affirm myself,” she says.

But when she is not looking inwardly, she focuses her attention on her family, building a strong relationship with her daughter Malaika and her sisters Ntsiki and Nomsa.

DRUM can’t avoid asking her what she thinks of Ntsiki’s controversial tweets which often target female celebrities.

“Our mother was very outspoken. She was the type of woman who said what she wanted to say. It runs in the family,” she says.

“So when my sister voices her opinions, I am not surprised. We don’t always agree on everything, but I don’t have issues with her being outspoken. It runs in the family.”

Thandiswa has a few things to say about Pearl Thusi trending on social media on the same day of Winnie Mandela’s birthday and we ask her if she is engaged.

Find out more about Thandiswa in this week’s issue of DRUM.

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