Getting to know Philisiwe Mavukela

By Drum Digital
06 April 2017

Afro soul sensation musician Philisiwe Mavukela is paving her way to more restful pastures with her music after she suffered depression.

DRUM caught up with Philisiwe since the release of her second single in February and she talked about her career and more.

Tell us more about yourself?

I am 28 years old and grew up in Katlehong where I was raised by my grandmother. My mother passed away when I was two months old. I’m passionate about music, big time.

Explain your choice in music and how it all started?

I started singing when I was eight years old at Cathula Primary School, in Katlehong when my teacher selected me to lead a solo. At that time I didn’t know why the teacher chose me. I went to Empilisweni High School and I excelled with music there also. After my matric I joined a music group called Joyful Voice in Katlehong and we sang opera and I sang soprano. I decided to leave the group because I realised that I’m not a choral singer. My friend Linda Sibiya advised me to do my own music. What happened after you left the group? I went to backroom studios with no budget and the producer liked my music and we did my first song called Nguwe, but then I left that producer also because I didn’t like his sound. I tried working with a different producer but that things got worse, which led to my depression. I had depression for two years and my family didn’t know what was going on until 2012, when my friend Diamond saw me. He invited me to a hip hop session in Emthunzini, still in Katlehong, where I met Sourie Msiki, my new producer. We had funding challenges for performances and I also got sick again. Last year Msiki called me again to renew my 2009 songs. We worked on that and it’s amazing, my EP will be out on 28 April this year and it has six amazing tracks.

What can we expect on this EP?

Good soulful music, inspiring lyrics, it’s fresh and different.

What’s been some highlights and challenges so far in your music career?

Performing and sharing the stage with artists like Zonke, Lira, Zahara, Sjava and Amanda Black at the Reconciliation Festival at Carnival City in Brakpan. It’s also exciting that my music is being played on 12 radio stations. The challenges will always be there, you know, getting gigs to perform is the biggest challenge and also funding.

What are your plans for the rest of 2017?

I’ll be touring around Gauteng, finishing my album and release it before the end of the year then do more performances and writing.

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