Thembi Seete

Based: Johannesburg

eete was born in 1977 in Soweto but grew up in Sebokeng in the Vaal where she stayed with her aunt and uncle. ‘I stayed with them for stability purposes because at the time my mother (Rebecca Seete) didn’t have a house and she was doing a lot of moving around.” When her mother finally bought her first house the young Seete moved in with her in Dobsonville.

Seete entered dance competitions while growing up in the Vaal before she hit the big time in jozi. Her career highlights include being a member of revolutionary kwaito Boom Shaka and an acting role in the South African movie Hijack Stories. She has also featured in a string of SABC 1 dramas such as Yizo Yizo, Gazlam and Zone 14.

Seete is currently a co-presenter on SABC 1’s dance show Jika Majika. She doesn’t consider herself too old for the show, “I think that my real age is 16, I’m just energetic and full of life.” It’s been a while since Seete released an album. Her energy levels are renewed. There is no other South African female pop artist with Seete’s potential to blow the pirates out of the waters right now. Her first single, Free, is laced out with beautifully engineered beats that potentially make the track a serious club banger. DJ Cleo’s contribution on the album is a hip-hop track. He didn’t do a bad job at all. Seete’s vocal abilities are more refined, something she attributes to nine months of voice training.

Family is the only thing that kept her going when she felt like giving up. Her brother, Moagi Seete who is a National School of the Arts graduate and Mbali Nkosi, wrote ‘FREE’, which is currently bopping on radio stations across the country. Seete also worked with DJ Black Coffee and Theo Kgosinkwe from Mafikizolo on the album.

Seete describes her music as pop, but says it is different from her first two albums Lollipop and Smatsatsa, which failed to mesmerize listeners. “With Lollipop the sound was more hard-core kwaito. On this album I have two gospel songs but with a house beat just to rope in the young ones. One of the tracks talks about God and how He has guided me through.”

Free, a title that people will as one of Boom Shaka’s smash hits in the 90s. “This comes from that Free. It is about breaking free, it almost goes back to that time when we (Boom Shaka) felt like we could do anything. Critic have labeled her a wannabe while others say she is ambitious and dedicated. True to her first single, think what you may but right now she is certainly all that she can be and more.

 

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