ZIMELE Buthelezi is a young maskandi musician with big dreams.
When many of his peers were playing soccer, Buthelezi preferred to learn how to play the guitar.
Born in Eshowe, KwaZulu-Natal, the 22-year-old has just released his debut album, Mzukulu Ka GeJa.
With his great voice and striking lyrics Buthelezi is bound to do well in this tough industry.
He might be new to the industry but his album can compete with a lot of very good offering on the market.
Buthelezi says the album is about celebrating life, peace and faith.
"The album predominantly talks about my life experiences as someone who lost both his parents at a young age.
"I was forced to grow up quickly. I am sure that many people will relate to the songs because they, too, have gone through similar experiences," explains Buthelezi.
The album also pays tribute to fallen maskandi star Mgqumeni Khumalo, who died in December.
In the gospel-maskandi track Buthelezi praises Khumalo for entertaining people with his music.
To put together this beautiful album Buthelezi worked with Shoes Simelane, Raphael Dlamini, Mpukani Dube and Phathaphatha Ngcobo.
Buthelezi says his love for maskandi music developed at an early age, while listening to musicians such as Mahaukela, Ocela Zimnike and Mgqumeni.
Asked why he chose maskandi over kwaito he says: "I grew up in an environment where maskandi dominated.
"Even when I moved to Durban, I felt that it was the right music for me."