This Botswana born, Joburg based singer-songwriter is ready to inject an infectious energy into the Pan African music scene. With an EP to be released next month, she aims to build her growing momentum in Botswana, (yes, she really is from Botswana!), whilst promoting the EP across Southern Africa building a movement towards the rest of the continent.
Described as authentic, original and experimental, Mpho has built a loyal audience base following her extraordinary signature acapella mash-ups including Brenda Fassie (‘Too Late for Mama’) meets The Fugees (‘Ready Or Not’) and Boom Shaka (‘Lerato’/‘Free’) meets Erykah Badu (‘Other Side Of The Game’) [Listen to her mash-ups here: Mpho Sebina Soundcloud]. The groundswell from the mash-ups lead to the release of her debut single and music video ‘Loves Light’, a beautifully crafted soul composition reminiscent of classic Bob Marley and Sade, with sonic facets of the new generation melancholic trap soul by Jene Ahiko and Solange.
Incorporating hip-hop, soul, jazz, traditional Setswana music and folklore into her sound, the 28-year-old already has a formidable repertoire of written compositions. She says songs fill her being – and stay there until she is compelled to put pen to paper and get into the studio.
“My music is autobiographical. The stuff I’ve written is self-reflection time for me,” she says. “As a 28-year-old African woman my music is about the journey to discovering one’s self through this world. “I would like to stir up that quest for self, to bring about a healing type of vibe. It’s a lot about overcoming and focusing on the personal stuff. Sometimes we get wrapped in anxiety, myself included. My music is about providing an outlet for listeners to forget.”
Although her first recordings were done whilst an international business student in Malaysia, the self-taught musician has gigged at events such as the ‘Gaborone International Music and Culture Week’, music festival ‘Jazz on the Lawn’ and now SA’s premier youth culture event ‘Basha Uhuru’ and Bassline Live with Stogie T and Rebirth of Cool at Lyric Theatre in Johannesburg. She hosts a monthly live music co-operative ‘Naked Soul Sessions’ curating a performance line-up of yet to be discovered local music and merchandisers.
Mpho’s single ‘Black Butterfly’ is an ethereal soul jazzy hip-hop teaser off her forthcoming debut EP ‘NEO’ – launching end September across all digital music platforms.