Mbuso Khoza

I am from Eshowe, KwaZulu Natal, the north of KwaZulu Natal, its two hours from Durban. The song is about what happened before 1879, the war, the battle of Isandlwana. King Cetshwayo was taken to court many times because the British were prosecuting him about his own land, so that song holds a special place in all of us as Zulus. Its like our Zulu anthem, even when the Zulu family, the Zulu royalty, when they are gathering they make sure that they sing that song. Its like a prayer song, not necessarily a prayer, but its so special in the manner that everyone when we are singing it, it’s like we get deeper into it, we get into it because of its message, even when we are not there at the time of the occurrence, its like we’re there when we sing that song.  The name of the song is Kwanqala Kandala, it means they were provoking the king, when they say “Kwanqala Kandala” its like they are calling one of the Zulu ancestors, they’re saying you’re provoking the king. 

I am 34 turning 35 July 20. My entire life I’ve been singing. Since I was… its been 13 years professionally. I am touring going to each and every corner of South Africa making sure people they know about Mbuso Khoza. And outside South Africa, places like Senegal, Burkina Faso, in Mali I’ve been there. The reception is so good because it’s something they are not used to. If you go to another country, if you go to America and you sing R&B you have nothing new to offer. So I think I am exploring more of the African music, especially within the Zulu culture because we are so rich in culture and we have so many categories within the Zulu music. Countless.

I went to Johanesburg to establish myself as a singer, but I only knew how to sing Zulu hymns, so everything there I was doing, I had to grasp it immediately. It was a new thing to me, I had to grasp those things within a short space of time, and I’m a self-taught musician so… but again I think it was a blessing not to study music because maybe it was going to take away what I have. I was going to think what I’m learning is better then what I grow up experiencing. So now I’m in a position to study because I have this good foundation of understanding my own culture and especially the richness of my indigenous music.