My mom is my everything. For the longest time, she raised my two siblings and I alone until my amazing stepdad came into the picture when I started high school. She had this ‘black child’ that others didn’t know how to define but, she chose me over her family on numerous occasions. She made it a point to always tell me that I was special. Growing up, my mom never treated us differently — I didn’t even notice that I was darker, and that my siblings had longer, softer hair.
Identity means a lot to me. I love my hood, Pretoria, but I grew up in a predominantly Indian community, Laudium, which I found to be racist. I could only speak English and Afrikaans, and got tired of people asking if I was adopted, so I taught myself vernac. I didn’t fit in because I wasn’t Coloured or Indian enough by societal standards, and definitely not black enough because of the language barrier.
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I started DJing when I was 17 in late 2010. My mom thought it would be a great way to pursue my love for music and keep busy while earning some money. After matric, I couldn’t further my studies because she got retrenched and my dad’s business went under. The year 2010 was very dark for us — there were times when my mom had to choose between buying electricity or purchasing my DJing equipment — and once again, she chose me. My family really made the greatest of sacrifices for me to get here.
I got into showbiz in 2013. I started off as a guest DJ doing a mix on DJ Malwela’s show on Tshwane FM. The reception was so amazing that I became a regular every Wednesday. Malwela is really like an older brother to me. Through radio, I ended up doing a lifestyle show called Living The Dream on Tshwane TV. So, Live Amp didn’t happen by chance. My ultimate career goal was to end up in entertainment.
People think I’m an overnight success. I’ve been working really hard for seven years. I had those frustrating moments when I felt like things weren’t going well, but I believe God and my ancestors did things at their own time and pace. Nothing happens instantly. It takes blood, sweat, tears and plenty of sacrifices.
I was ready to give up just before I got the Live Amp gig last year. I felt like my life was spiralling out of control. I was involved in a car accident while busy with auditions. Then, a few days later, my entire DJ equipment was stolen out of my car. God showed up for me when I got that all-important call.
Fame is bigger than anyone, and comes with responsibility. I get surprised when older people recognise me. I get parents that walk up to me saying, ‘My child wanted to be a presenter and I refused. But seeing you on TV makes me want to give them a chance.’ It gets overwhelming at times, and the downside is that you’re not viewed as human. People forget that, just like them, you’re flawed and have bad days.
?I’m not doing this for myself, but for every other girl or boy who never felt good enough. I know for a fact that I got Live Amp because I’m different. Finding myself was my biggest blessing because there was a period when I suffered from dire self-esteem issues. I come from a cross-cultural family that’s predominately Coloured and Indian, and I’m the only black child. Now, I’m so comfortable with who I am — my dark skin, curly hair, flaws and all.
I am currently dating, but want my love life to remain private. My relationship is mine, and I love how he gets me. I hate it when guys get with you just because they like the idea of you. My biggest blessing has been being with someone who understands fame and isn’t fazed by it.