The ever-present Candy Tsamandebele has won the Best Traditional Album category at this year’s South African Music Awards – #SAMA25 which took place last night at Sun City in the North West.
Hupenyu Unenge Viri which took a year and a half to put together was produced by various producers from South Africa, Kenya, and Nigeria. This is not the first nomination in the same category for Candy Tsamandebele, however, it is the first win at the South African Music Awards as a solo artist. Easy Come Easy Come, was also nominated at the SAMA23. Easy Come Easy Go explored various themes like self-love, identity, and belonging. Candy Tsamandebele’s vocal delivery on Mmalekutu reminds us why South Africans fell in love with her on the hit song Ngwayikwani with the late Peta Teanet, while Khillo introduced us to another side of her rare songwriting abilities.
Hupenyu Unenge Viri’s two leading singles, Siku Ne Siku released last year and Nathinga released recently show the versatility and immense workmanship. Candy featured her ex-boyfriend Nonny D on Siku Ne Siku and penned Nathinga with Mr Mo of Walking Away fame, Jnr SA served as the producer alongside Candy and Mr Mo. Candy Mokwena’s looks for both nights at the SAMA were designed by a Manyaku UDF, a designer from Limpopo .
I am glad I won this award. Producing and releasing traditional/Afrosoul music is not an easy job given where the music industry is at in South Africa. It is growing, and one might lose that traditional essence if there is a lack of determination and focus. My putting out Hupenyu Unenge Viri is a deliberate and thoroughly planned process, I love culture and traditional music from Africa as a whole. The collaborations on this album show that. With that said, I would like to thank everyone who buys and support my music – Candy Tsamandebele.
Candy currently portrays flamboyant, loud shebeen queen Mhani Dayina on SABC 2’s telenovela, Giyani Land of Blood airing Monday to Wednesday at 21h30. It was created by renowned South African television production company Tshedza Pictures.