With her infectious production and pleasing vocals, rising star Bonolo Phiri is emerging as the next big Afro-Soul thing.
Bonolo, whose music is a joyous fusion of soul and traces of gospel influences is spellbinding.
The artist who hails from Vanderbijlpark
got her break in 2019 when she was discovered by Sounds of Joy Records, who recorded her debut single, Ngimtholile.
Last year, she released Reflections, a diary-like confessional EP that speaks to highs and lows of her life.
“I narrate my life through my songs. I also celebrate my victories through my music,” she says.
The North-West University (NWU) Vanderbijlpark Campus alumna, who is an information technology graduate and an IT specialist started singing at church at the tender age of nine.
She says though her parents were pleased by her singing talent, they were uncomfortable with her pursuing a career in music.
” Because I was a top achiever at school, my parents were a bit uncomfortable about my love for music. They were worried that I was going to drop out of school and chase fame. They wanted me to pursue academics,” she shares.
She says she is greatful she pursued both music and IT as the two supplement each other.
“I use music to escape from the boredom of computers, and IT to escape from the chaotic lifestyle of showbiz,” she says.
Bonolo says she is influenced by R&B and House singer, Bucie Nqwiliso.
“I look up to Bucie. I love the confidence that she delivers her music with. I am also mesmerized by her voice,” she says.
Since her breakthrough Bonolo has shared the stage with big artists including K.O., King Munada, Nokwazi and Major League DJs, among others.
Bonolo encourages young aspiring artists not to abandon their studies.
“Education will never go out of fashion. It is a great thing to fall back on when things do not work out in the cutthroat music business,” she says.
Bonolo says she wants to show young aspiring musicians that it is possible to do white-collar work while pursuing a career in music.