Are you ready to have your soul sung to? South Africa’s “Zahara” is a singer/songwriter who combines her native language of Xhosa (say Ko-za) and English, to make music that sings to the soul. You might not understand every word, but you don’t need to. This multiple-award-winning artist may come from the bottom of the world, but her music will lift you to the heavens.
Zahara – Younger Years
Well her name isn’t actually Zahara, that is her stage name. Her name is Bulelwa Mkutukana and she was born in an informal settlement near East London in South Africa. She is the 6th of seven children and started singing from a young age. When she was six years old she started to sing in her school’s choir. By the time she turned 9, she was moved up to the senior school choir because her voice was very powerful.
Singing Like A Blooming Flower
She took on the role of lead singer in a local Sunday school choir, and she promptly received the nickname of “blooming flower”. Many experts have referred to her as the South African Tracy Chapman, because of her fresh Afro-soul music style. When she started out in 2011 with her album titled Loliwe, it sold out in 72 hours. It took just 19 days for the album to reach double platinum status. She was a hit. The following year at the South African Music Awards, Zahara took home 8 awards, two of which were “Best Female Artist” and “Album of the Year”.
Listen For Yourself
Zahara’s Bright Future
Her fame is slowly leaking outside of South Africa and into the world. Her last album release was in 2015, and now her fans are getting edgy; they want another one, we all do! We all recognize the big names in music, but sometimes the smaller, lesser-known talents are hiding in the shadows. We just need to find them, and when we do, they find their way into our hearts and their ignite our souls. Zahara is that talent.