Remember girl group Jamali? We find out what they’re getting up to now

Jamali. (Photo: Gallo Images)
Jamali. (Photo: Gallo Images)

Give it up for Jamali!

Nearly a decade and a half ago Jacqui Carpede, Mariechan Luiters, and Liesl Penniken formed a girl group called Jamali on the Coca-Cola Popstars TV show in 2003, and became one of the most sought after music groups in Mzansi.

They went on to release hits such as Dalile and Love Me For Me.

The trio won Best South African Pop act in 2009 and are three-time South African Music Awards nominees.

Sadly, like all good things, at some point they’ve to come to an end. Like most musical groups, Jamali came to an end after the girls decided to pursue their solo careers after an amazing 16 years and four albums together.

So where are they now?

Though priority was placed on their solo careers, the girls still performed together at selected private shows up until 2018. They decided to do a grand exit for their fans last year when they performed at the K-Day music festival in Cape Town in March. Thousands of fans were there and those who couldn’t make it watched online.

Mariechan Luiters

“It was the perfect exit. Emotional but beautiful.” Mariechan recalls. “Taking the stage without the girls for the first time [after that] felt scary and a bit lonely but I had to celebrate my individuality too. We had our own dreams and desires, so our roads naturally changed direction.”

Through collaborations with new artists and DJs from the rest of the continent, Mariechan got to relearn the music industry and gained a new fan base. She’s thriving as a musician and writing and singing on jingles for advertisements.

As for whether she’ll be releasing anything with her beau, NaLingi hitmaker Manu Worldstar, she says we’ll just have to wait and see.

“I’ve been working on new music with some really amazing creatives. This time around I don’t want to overthink it, I just want to immerse myself in it and around it. So you can expect a few singles soon, taking you through my different moods,” she said.

Jacqui Carpede

Since launching her solo career Jacqui Carpede has been enjoying spending time with her teenage son, Thabiso, growing her company that supplies musical instruments to marching bands, travelling and writing music.

The singer has been showing off her love for the camera too, shooting burlesque show Red Light Evenings and hopes to one day get recognised in that avenue.

“I love acting and I'm always ready to jump in front of the camera again,” Jacqui tells YOU.

“I’m still waiting for Skeem Saam to call me.

“I'm currently completing my sophomore album. I'm excited to release the first single called Don't Let Go in the next two months.”

Liesl Penniken

It’s been a journey with both highs and lows, as with every other experience in life, says Liesl Penniken.

Liesl reveals she’s fortunate to have been able to continue doing what she loves in the music industry, from recording new or upcoming material, to live performances and coaching on Idols SA.

The pastor’s kid who grew up singing in church says although she’s recorded and sang gospel music throughout her career, she isn’t boxing herself as an artist and wants to pursue more.

“I think because many people have seen me working with the iconic Benjamin Dube on a few of his projects, they naturally assume I now do gospel,” Liesl says. “I do gospel and every other genre that makes my soul happy.

“I believe there's music that inspires love towards God, then there's music that inspires love towards self and others. My life's aim is therefore to strike the perfect balance.

“I'm planning on going into the studio and recording behind-the-scenes footage of a song recorded a while back that I'd like to put out as a single. Then I’m planning a setup for an online show to go live via social platforms.”

This might be one of the very few music groups that ended without any drama, as the ladies still get together and celebrate one another.

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