99FM – Your Inspiration Station

South African Singer Toya Delazy on Finding Your Passion

South African multidisciplinary artist Toya Delazy has been a stand out star for as long as she can remember. 

Hailing from KwaZulu-Natal, Toya has achieved great achievements that few Africans in music can brag about. In 2013, she was nominated in the Best International Act category at the BET Awards and more recently, her partnership with Cartoon Network Africa yielded a career highlight of note when she voiced ‘Belle’, a character which appeared in an episode produced specially for African audiences. 

This throwback edition of MYD Africa features an interview with the singer during her visit to Namibia in 2016.

THE TRIBE: You’ve got such an incredible stage presence and energy on the stage. Where does that come from?

Where does it come from, I just think it comes from love of what I do. It naturally just happens. I’m not putting like extra effort to do you know, do what I love, so right now I feel like I’m in the best space. 

THE TRIBE: You’ve just performed in Windhoek. What was it like, what do you think of your Namibian leg of your tour?

I loved it, I loved it, every part of it. I mean despite the fact that we had just flown in from Zimbabwe and one and a half hours sleep. I didn’t know what to expect, I didn’t know what the people here would want to hear. The audience was diverse, I love diversity, and we really had a good time, so I definitely want to come back. 

THE TRIBE: What does freedom mean to you?

Just the, being, you know like being. I’m a Zulu, full blown Zulu. We’ve got our cultures. More so I’m from the Royal family.

THE TRIBE: Yes, you are the granddaughter as well of Mangosuthu Buthelezi?

Yes I am and with that comes with a certain narrative.

For me freedom is not rebelling against it, but just being who I want to be. I can’t be what people want me to be. Freedom is just doing what you love. Like I feel what I’m doing right now is freedom you know.

THE TRIBE: How do we really find our passion?

It begins honestly with your emotions. This is how I compose how I feel, and from how I feel, I kind of act on that. If I’m feeling sad, I’m definitely going to write something to heal my heart, and this is how, for me this is how this whole music thing came about. I went through a loss, I lost my mom. It changed and rocked my whole world.

I was eighteen and I was super depressed. I was actually an athlete before and I thought I would be an athlete. I mean I ran for South Africa, I played hockey and after that I just got over it and really focused on music and music heals. You need to do something that inspires you. It needs to make you feel good. If it doesn’t make you feel good then perhaps it’s not your passion.

Watch the MYD Africa Show on One Africa TV every Tuesday at 20h00 with repeats on Thursdays at 06h30 and Sundays at 19h30.