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Interview With Berita

berita 1 Afrosoul is a new type of genre that we are all starting to love more than hate. There are quite a few artists talented in this area of music and are still to show us what they can do with it and what makes it unique. One of them being Berita, a young talented musician from the Eastern Cape that is representing her music with pride. We took a moment to sit down with this songstress to find out what she is about, what makes her and what we should expect from her in the industry. Enjoy!

YV: Please introduce us to Berita Khumalo?

Berita: My name is Berita, I am a singer , songwriter and guitarist.  I was born in Zimbabwe koBulawayo, I spent my teenager years with my dairy farming parents in New Zealand. In 2011 I came to South Africa with my suitcase and a guitar to study Accounting at Walter Sisulu University. As a student I got the opportunity to perform for my peers, in community events, at functions and societies. Before long I got an opportunity to record my first album ‘Conquering Spirit’ which came out in 2012 whilst I was a second year student. My single Thandolwethu became a popular anthem, my debut album went Gold and won Best African Pop Album at the 2013 Metro Fm Awards. And this year I graduated first in my class with Coum laude.

YV: What are some of the challenges you faced before you made it into the industry?

Berita: Well lack of knowledge was my main challenge. I knew nothing about the industry , I didn’t understand the structure and how things work. As a result I was taken advantage of. I remember one particular incident before I recorded my first album where I went and performed at a community heritage event and months later found out that I had been head hunted and the organizers had been given a budget for me. But I hadn’t known that I was supposed to be paid I was doing it purely because of passion.

YV: Who are some of your biggest influences in the industry?

Berita: Well currently I look up to 5 women who have been in this industry for at least a decade : Zonke, Lira, Simphiwe Dana, Thandiswa Mazwai, Siphokazi These women are my inspiration because I understand the hardwork it takes in the music industry.

YV: If it wasn’t music what other career would you have ventured in to?

Berita: I would have been a doctor or an accountant, those are the two careers I’ve always been fascinated by.

YV: Did you anticipate the success of Conquering Spirit?

Berita: Not at all, I merely went into studio and laid a couple of the songs I had written and went back to school. It’s months later when I heard Thandolwethu on radio and the feedback that I considered the possibility that I might actually do very well.

YV: What were some of your memorable moments as a result of the album’s success?

Berita: People crying when I sing. I’ve had very emotional moments and for me touching someone’s heart and soul is the most important thing. 

YV: ThandoLwethu was a huge hit, what was the thought process when you were writing the song?

Berita: Well Thandolwethu is a special song. I wrote this song with a friend of mine Busisiwe Alicia Smith (Busie) who is also an amazing musician. I had the guitar rhythm and a couple of words. But when Busie heard the guitar rhythm she started singing the first verse of Thandolwethu, she narrated what she was going through, and when I got home for months I didn’t work on the song. Then one day when I was at my grandmother’s place I started playing it and adding structure to the idea that Busie had blessed me with. It really sounded good.

YV: What makes Berita’s sound different?

Berita: I’m a soul singer. I sing with my heart and soul. I play my guitar with my Spirit. My aim is to empower and elevate people’s spirits with my music.

YV: Your debut album The Conquering Spirit was judged the best African Pop album at the Metro FM Music Awards in 2013, what do you attribute that success to?

Berita: God’s blessings and favor. Yes I work hard and have had my fair share of trials and tribulations but anyone could have walked away with that award that night. But God saw my heart, he saw what I really needed and gave it to me.

YV: What inspired your new album title ‘Songs Of Empowerment’?

Berita: I wanted to make music that would move people’s hearts and souls. Music that empowers the soul, the mind and the heart. And I was putting together songs for the album, all of them happened to fit that theme.


YV: What can people expect from the album?

Berita: Uplifting music. Conscious groovy music. I sing about many issues from a personal struggle to realize my dreams, true love, patriotism,life and death. And I hope people will relate.

Listen to Berita- Sukundixhesha below

YV: How can people buy the album?

Berita: My album is now on PreOrder on iTunes here is the link:  https://itunes.apple.com/za/album/songs-of-empowerment/id935355095

YV: My album is also available in all good music shops around South Africa.

Berita: Who or what inspires you the most?  I am inspired by people the way they walk, talk and act. Because we are patients in the same hospital of life.

berita 2

YV: Does Berita have any hidden talents?

Berita: None at all I can’t run to save my life.

YV: Is your stage personality any different to everyday Berita?

Berita: At first it wasn’t , I’m a very simple person reserved person  but I’ve learnt that on stage I have to multiply my personality by 100. On stage now I’m bubbly , sexy and way more mature than I am in person. I enjoy stage for that .

YV: Describe your “look mama I made it” moment.

Berita: When my new album Songs of Empowerment came out. My mother loves my first album so much she was scared that my follow up wouldn’t sound as good. It was lovely to introduce my new songs to her and feel her excitement.

YV: Your top 5 local artists at the moment are:

Berita: Girl power all the way! Busiswa, Simphiwe Dana, Moneoa , Candy Tsamandebele , Siphokazi

YV: Who’s your local celebrity crush? 

Berita: Hehehe *laughs away*

YV: Your house is burning, what are the first 5 items you save?  

Berita: All my 5 guitars

YV: What advice would you like to give the SA youth, particularly those trying to build a music career?

Berita: I would like to advice young people to get as much knowledge about this industry and most importantly focus and grow their artistry and believe.

YV: If Berita were to be an acronym what would the letters stand for?

Beloved Energetic Rebellious  Iconic Talented Amazing

YV: How can your fans reach you?

On twitter my handle is: @Berita_afrosoul My Facebook page is: Berita Instagram: Berita_afrosoul  You can listen to my new single called ‘Sukundixhesha’ on soundcloud here:   m.soundcloud.com/beritamusic/sukundixesha 

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