5 Minutes with Msaki


Musician, Msaki chats to us about her childhood, musical influences and debut album Zaneliza: How the Water Moves. By Kwanele Mathebula

1. I was born and raised in East London. I grew up making go-carts and building treehouses. I spent a lot of time outside, dreaming and imagining. I have fond memories of playing marbles and picking prickly pears. I look back fondly on my childhood.

2. There was always singing or someone playing the piano at home. It helped me realise that my gift was not to be taken for granted. My yearning to express my gift became deeper, especially when other family members in previous generations could not pursue it. My parents also opened me up to love so many different genres and my palate is quite eclectic because of this.

3. Being part of numerous bands helped me find my voice, learn about people and creativity. Being in a band gives one the freedom to explore with the safety net of other creatives always being there. That is a good and bad thing. Being alone allows my voice and artistry to become clearer so I am happy to be pushing my own project. It is also a collaborative effort in many regards but the vision and the creative decisions are my own. It’s exciting and leaves room for endless possibilities. I am enjoying it very much.

4. My album was partly crowd-funded and self-funded. It means so much that people believed in me. They trusted me with their money in advance and I delivered. It’s really how I see art working more and more in the future especially for independent artists. They partially funded my dream and I will forever be grateful for that.

SEE ALSO: Melo B Jones’s musical journey

5. I will be busy with my new project in 2018. More collaborations across various art forms and touring the world. I will be curating more live music experiences for the alternative black band scene in the Eastern Cape. I will also be involved with artistic community projects in East London and Hamburg in the Eastern Cape.