Lebo Sekgobela stands out on powerful double album
Lebo Sekgobela maintains her winning streak with the release of Umusa, her new double disc album this week.
From the rousing opening track Mangeloi, that runs for more than 14 minutes, she tears the heavens with her amazing pitch and gets any fan into hysteria.
Recorded live at Rhema Bible Church in March, the 20-track album carries on the momentum she enjoyed from the release of Restored with the monster hit Lion of Judah.
She is not perturbed by those who may be looking for a song to emulate the success of that track.
"When we released Lion of Judah we could never have predicted it would be this big. But South Africans have an ear for music and they picked it up. I believe the same will happen with this album.
"All I'm saying is be blessed with whatever you hear or listen to on this recording."
Sekgobela says Umusa is a personal release.
"I've experienced the grace of God and I want to share that with people. The message is that what seems like it is not working in your life should not mean the end.
"There are things we want and sometimes you may feel lonely and in the eye of the storm, you need to keep the faith and trust that God's mercy is upon you."
She says the music on Umusa stands testament to how she saw God in her life and it's for the young and old to carry in their prayer life. "My prayer is that it becomes one of the albums to connect us with God and our loved ones."
She continues to sing hymns which she calls her forte along with her original compositions.
Thobekile Mahlangu from Joyous Celebration wrote Moya Wami which boasts an authentic African rhythm. Ho Bokwe, Lentswe La Hao and Mangi Qwaliswe are
the album's standouts.
She is currently on a national tour promoting Umusa
Sekgobela says as an independent musician she has not stopped learning about the industry and how it operates. She had recorded a Shona song and a duet with Ntsika Ngxanga of The Soil, but the two were not released following unfinished documentation.
"There are things we need to learn so that we don't fail. The industry changes all the time and you need a solid support structure. Our government is not doing enough to educate us on issues of copyright and intellectual property. I've had to learn as I go and that has made me strong. A nation that lacks knowledge will not prosper."
As her own boss, she has to source funds and everything needed for her business to run.
"You have no time to be put down by government departments saying they don't have a budget for you. You have to push for your dream. Failing to do so will send a bad message to the younger generations that it's impossible to dream.
"Even the scriptures say 'you can do exceedingly and abundantly well even beyond what you have imagined'. I'm grateful to be independent and urge others to be on their own."
Sekgobela is also concerned by the scourge of abuse against women and children and wants to add her voice to the calls to bring it to an end.
"I believe we have to stand up and ensure that certain things are not allowed to happen in our generation.
"It's important that we are heard as we speak out. Just like when a woman yells in the labour room that the baby is coming and the doctors and nurses pay attention.
"Families are also killing the voices of young girls and boys when they complain about their uncles molesting them, and they are told to keep quiet.
"We need to end that and make sure that we live the legacy of Ntate Mandela. Like the 1956 women who said they won't carry a dompas, we say no to abuse.
"We can't live in fear, a man should be my brother and protector, not someone to take advantage of me. This abuse has to end in 2018, we are not taking it with us to 2019."