Kelly Khumalo dropped her fantastic new album ‘My Truth’ late last year which has received rave reviews from critics around the country. The emotional album , which includes the tracks ‘Uthando’, ‘What If’ and ‘Senzo’ – a ode to the fallen Senzo Meyiwa, won the Best Female Album award at 2017 Metro FM Awards. This week, I chat to the star about her new album, the emotional process behind the tribute to her late boyfriend and what advice she has for up-and-coming musicians.

You dropped your brand new album ‘My Truth’ recently. How have you grown as an artist since ‘Back To My Roots’?

The biggest difference this time around was that I was more hands on. I was more involved in the production and how I wanted the album to sound. I really poured my heart and soul into this album.

Why name the record ‘My Truth’?

Music is the only place where I get to be my true self – without holding back. I feel like I don’t need to hide when I share my story through music. So, it felt apt to call the album ‘My Truth’.

‘Uthando’ was the lead single off the project. Why is this song the perfect introduction to the record?

I feel like any song on the album would be a perfect introduction because it’s such a personal record. We choose ‘Uthando’ because love is one of the things I’m passionate about and this song captures that beautifully.

You dedicated a song to Senzo Meyiwa. How difficult was it for you to put such raw feelings into song?

It was a more liberating feeling than difficult. I shared my feelings in the best way I know how – through song. It allowed me to put all my feelings into one place and to move on with my life.

You collaborated with former The Voice SA star Jono Johansen on two tracks on the album. What was it like working with him?

Jono is one amazing young man. He is highly driven to be the best he can be. It was so inspiring to see someone so determined and so hungry to succeed. You don’t find that so often in musicians these days and I wish him the best of luck with his career.

You’re incredible to watch live. What do you think makes for a great live performance?

I sing from an honest place every single time I am on stage. I sing to give life to my audience. I prepare a lot for every live show and I have respect for my audience. I want them to give my all each and every time.

What advice do you have for up and coming musicians wanting to make it in the industry?

It’s so important to be yourself. The world is waiting for you, the unique you. Don’t duplicate of what we have seen before because, honestly, you will never be able to be better than what you are trying to copy.

The record won Best Female Album at the Metro FM Awards earlier this year. What do such accolades mean to you?

It’s always great to be recognized for your work. Awards motivate me to work even harder and up my game on the next album.

What do the next few months have in store for you?

That’s the exciting thing about the future, it is so unpredictable. I am waiting for the big doors of heaven to open.

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