'I was a musician before I became a firefighter' – TroyMusiq
Star credits his parents for his love of music
Firefighter by the day, musician by night has been the life Tumello Nonyane leads for over a decade.
Known by his fans as TroyMusiq, Nonyane credits his religious musical family for fuelling his love for music at the tender age of seven.
“The world of music has been a part of me way before I could become a firefighter. I grew up in a spiritual family where we held prayer nights every night and we would sing before we pray… or at a funeral or any outing where we gathered as a family.
“My passion for music was actually passed on to me by my parents who were both great singers. I believe I took my gift of singing from them, they really watered the desire for music in me as well as my siblings,” Nonyane shares.
While he had a deep desire for singing, Nonyane’s dream was soon crushed when his primary school choir teacher told him he couldn't sing, but that didn’t deter him from what he loves to do the most.
He went on to join the church choir where his mother was the head of the youth choir. “It was a heartbreaking experience because I had a tiny voice. While it was easy for my school choir teacher to fit my voice in, I am glad I had the option to sing at St Agnes Anglican Church, where I could sing freely,” he expresses.
Born and bred in Tembisa on the East Rand, the 37-year-old explains he had a tough upbringing which he believes moulded him into the person he is today – kind and caring.
“I was a very proactive child, I used to play cricket and soccer. I used sport as an outlet because I never really had friends because of my situation at home. I would often hide from kids in my neighbourhood because of not having the things they had. You would say I was scared of being teased for not being able to fit in."
He adds that his family were his friends as he was able to be himself around them. “Even today, I don’t have much friends, but being an entertainer, I love interacting with people and making them happy.”
Nonyane has been a firefighter/paramedic by profession for the past 15 years. He embarked on his music career by recording music in 2004. “I kept going to the studio every year, till my professional music career picked up in 2017. I then officially released my first afro-pop single titled Akekho.
"One thing about me is that I don’t like boxing myself in terms of what genre of music I sing, but at the moment I am vibing with house music. My second single, Ngak’badala, which I collaborated with Aymos and Destro, is doing impressively well and I think with that people can get a sense of my music ability.”