Zahara’s song of success

Angela Gillham

“JUST keep on keeping on!” That is the advice Eastern Cape singing sensation Bulelwa “Zahara” Mkutukana has for aspiring young singers – especially those who hail from rural areas.

Speaking shortly after winning a total of eight awards at the 18th South African Music Awards (Samas) held at the Sun City Superbowl in North West on Sunday and Monday, the singer could not contain her excitement.

“Yoh man! I am still excited and overjoyed. Oh my word, eight awards,” said the bubbly singer, who burst onto the music scene when her smash hits Loliwe and Lengoma took South Africa by storm last year.

Zahara, who said she had celebrated with friends in her hotel room on Monday night, said: “I knew maybe I would win one or two, maybe three. But eight! I don’t know how to describe it!

“I don’t like going out clubbing [so] I celebrated with my TS [her recording company] family as well as friends in my hotel room.”

Speaking about the future, Zahara said she was looking forward to filming her new music video, performing in Namibia and visiting her family in East London.

She heads to Namibia on Saturday for a one-night-only show. On Sunday she will be home in East London, visiting family.

“I have to go home to see my family. My mom phoned saying she couldn’t believe it. So did my dad and sister. They were all crying. I need to celebrate with them,” she said.

In June, the songstress will be filming a new music video. “On June 8 and 9, I will be filming at Carnival City and I can’t wait. I will be collaborating with a surprise artist from the UK.”

Despite attempts to get the golden girl of South African music to divulge who the star was, she simply laughed, saying: “People will find out later.”

Speaking about her phenomenal rise from the girl who grew up in rural Phumlani to the ‘It girl of South African music’, Zahara said aspirant musicians who wanted to follow in her footsteps should “keep on keeping on”.

“Their time might not be now, it might not be tomorrow, but they must keep on keeping on and remember that the timing of God is the timing of God.

“They must just keep trying.”

Zahara scooped Samas for Album of the Year, Female Artist of the Year, Best Selling Album and Newcomer of the Year, among others.

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