Co-written by Asande Kubone & Mukondeleli Mushiana.
Defined as one of Soweto’s roughest and most notorious townships, Zola, hatched a number of Kwaito pioneers ranging from Mdu Mahlasela “The Godfather”, Mandoza, Mzambiya and ofcourse Zola 7. “Soweto’s roughest neighbourhood surged with new raw talent and even witnessed the inception of child Kwaito star Mzambiya who proved to South Africa’s masses that Zola township was the best kept Kwaito secret”, but in 1983 another Soweto township, Meadowlands, hatched the unapologetic First Lady of Kwaito, Nomasonto Maswanganyi famously known as Mshoza who we only got to know in 1998 when she was 15 years of age.
Mshoza took the South African music industry by storm. A rose amongst thorns, she changed the narrative around Kwaito music and allowed other queens after her to also add a feminine touch, to what was mostly dominated by males. Not only did she celebrate the lok’ishini culture, she embraced the overall aesthetics that came with it. She had a way of telling authentic stories through her music while she kept you dancing.
When she found herself at the Jam Alley stage in mid 1999 and getting voted number one after free-styling on a “Abasazi” instrumental by Chiskop, Mshoza didn’t know that from that moment onward her life was about to change forever. She got spotted by former Jam Alley presenter Nimrod Nkosi who also discovered Mzambiya and producer of the show Oscar Mlangeni and just eight months later she got a feature on her new label mate Mzambiya and Steve Lekoelea’s Jersey Number 10 EP, which was released in 2000.
uMshoza bhoza also had abo sister ntswembu nama Pantsula singing along and most probably doing the twalatsa dance to “Kortes (Kasi Luv)” back when it was released under the Bullgawdz First Lady Album, which is the body of work that introduced her & her music to the Mzansi nation. Mshoza being the first lady of Kwaito allowed other artists like Nestum & Purity, Lebo Mathosa, Thembi Seete & Andile Gaelesiwe to become somewhat part of the Kwaito genre by bringing different sounds and elements to it.
She may have lost her life at the age of 37 due to complications with diabetes and covid 19 yesterday, but her music lives on.