Nothing gets me more excited than seeing people actively chasing their dreams and making waves in their industries. So naturally when I was offered the opportunity to meet with a rising afro pop star I jumped at the chance.
Msizi Njapha, more popularly known by his stage name “Msizi World”, is an upcoming musician signed to Arie Records; I had the pleasure of sitting down for a chat with him and got to know the man behind the music.
How would you describe yourself in one paragraph?
Well as a person I will say I am a very open minded person, as open minded as I am I connect well with people, not easily but I do find my way to connect with people to the extent that I am able to put my message across. This is combined with being an artist, as an artist you have to have a close relationship with the people you are doing music for. Right now I would say I am an easy going person, very easy to relate to. I am a good listener, a strong person, determined and passionate.
What kind of a child were you growing up?
That question shouldn’t be directed to me (Laughs). Because every person will be like, I was a good child who went to school. But as a person who grew up EThekwini in KZN there isn’t much influence. So as a little boy I was naughty, I played a lot, in fact I always loved music, I listened to the likes of Brenda Fassie, Joe Mafela etc. Basically as a child I did normal staff that every child does. But when it came to family, it wasn’t always simple because we were raised by a single mother. It was obviously hard for my mum to raise five kids but then at some point I got used to that life because that was the only life I knew, I just adapted but still kept my goals and vision as to how my life was going to turn out. That is why I was able to study, finish school and graduate.
How did the dream start for music, dance and acting?
As I mentioned that from a young age I loved listening to music but I never thought I would make it a career because I wasn’t exposed to an environment where you see people succeeding or seeing a person that you know going far with that. So music was always a hobby for me. It all started to unfold when I went to Pretoria and met people who introduced me to theatre, then I started going to theatre because it was something I always loved. It opened my eyes and made everything clearer for me. I was eager to study it and know more about it, within the skills and qualifications that I had music was number on my list of the things I wanted to do, it was the first thing that stood out for me. That’s why I decided to release an album as a platform to speak to the young people.
Did you envision your life would be the way it is now when you were younger?
Not exactly the way it is right now but, what can I say I didn’t envision my life would be the kind of life I am living right now. However I did have a vision of this or rather an idea or picture of the level that I’m at because I wanted to release an album, I wanted to perform and speak to people through music and the idea was to be able to achieve that.
You recently released the album “Breaking Out”, how has that journey been?
In South Africa when you are a new artist, people have to look at you first then decide if they love or hate you, I think I am at that level where people are deciding whether to like or to hate me. But like I said I have a plan and a vision of where I want to be and I’m constantly working on that.
Where do you get your strength from?
Definitely I get my strength from God, I pray. Even if I have people that inspire and motivate me, it all comes down to I, I am the one who decides what I want my life to be like and God of course.
Do you have any plans outside of music, dancing and acting?
I don’t know if there is anything I can do, but I can do things outside the music but within the entertainment industry. For instance I perform but I’m not here to perform only, I want to get to the point where I inspire, teach and recruit artist from everywhere especially where I come from. Give young people the platform in arts, to be able to perform just like me. I think that’s actually what I want to do.
Any last words you’d like to share with South African youth?
Go to school. Nothing is as important as education. Education is the gift of life. If you get granted the gift of education you must take advantage of that opportunity. This is a gift that you will never lose. If you are educated you are granted a great future ahead of you. With education you are able to open doors for yourself. You must do something you know, something you are passionate and well informed about. Being educated is your right, use it wise. Being an educated artist gives you a respective ground, you don’t just become an object to society.
Be sure to grab a copy of Msizi’s album “Breaking Out”.
You can also follow Msizi on twitter @Msizi_N