Music Runs Deeply in Her Veins
This young woman is a dancer, choreographer, guitarist, composer, singer and an award-winning hit maker at the tender age of 23.
Rethabile Khumalo, daughter of the powerhouse and music legend, Winnie Khumalo, is a role model for the youth of South Africa. She started singing and dancing before she could even talk or walk. Music runs in her veins, with both parents making enormous contributions to the extent of changing the face of the music industry in the 1980s. Their style of music, called Bubblegum, got people tapping their feet and singing along to their wonderful voices. It is no wonder Rethabile has an amazing voice; her range is the envy of most musicians her age, her focus and work ethic is amazing at her age.
Becoming a Musician in Her Own Right
Determined to always go after what she wants, Rethabile entered Season Eight Idols at the age of 16. Although she was turned down because of her age, she decided to stop knocking on doors and start kicking them down, so to speak. Knowing she had the talent, and not wanting to use her parents contacts to get into the industry, Rethabile wanted to be respected for her talent and how she worked from the bottom up to make a name for herself – a musician in her own right.
One day Rethabile decided to send DJ Zinhle an inbox and told her that she was a singer and she had some songs she would like her to listen. DJ Zinhle, being such a humble woman, who also believed in empowering girls and women, didn’t hesitate to contact Rethabile and showed and interest in working with her. Let’s just say what came out of their collaboration was nothing but pure talent. The song ‘Umlilo’ sold over 5,5 million copies and won a couple of awards, including 2019 ‘Song of the Year’.
“I believe I was born to do music and my Mom is my biggest motivator and role model as she’s been in this industry since she was very young. She always guides me and advises me. I was also brought up in a very religious home and I believe everything that I do is guided by God, and even my decision to contact DJ Zinhle was just God guiding my career. In this industry it’s important to work hard and have a great family support.”
Never Forget What Youth Month is All About
The Youth of today must not forget what Youth Month is about. It’s about the young people the past who decided to change their situation themselves and in doing so they changed our history. This young performer wants to grow her brand she has her sights set on acting. One of her greatest dreams is to start an Arts and Culture School, free of charge for children in the townships. A haven were they can sing, dance and act. A positive alternative to the influences of drugs, gangs and teenage pregnancy. A place to boost their self esteem and show them there’s more to life than just their current situations.
While the lockdown in South Africa has not been easy, it has shown us that we will have to change the way we do things going forward, including music and concerts due to social distancing. Musicians are learning to embrace technology and are performing more regularly in online live concerts, and there has been collaboration with a music app.
Rethabile is an excellent example of Youth4Change. She has big dreams and she is going after them!
#ImStaying congratulates her and wishes her much succes!
Writer & Researcher for #ImStaying
I love learning new things, meeting people from all walks of life. I’m interested in community empowerment, languages, technology world affairs music and my children. I believe this country has so much potential and we are yet to discover it, we are all in a journey of self discovery and it’s a beautiful one.