The South African music industry is arguably one of the most competitive industries in Africa and the world at large. Legends have emerged from the industry while tonnes more are still in the making. One star still to be made is an upcoming house artiste who has done collaborations with artistes from as far as Greece and Italy. Urban Culxure took a detour to the Vaal (South of Johannesburg) to speak to the young female artiste who goes by the name Xoly Devine.
Urban Culxure (UC): In short who is Xoly Devine? And which three words describe her?
Xoly Devine (XD): Xoly is a daughter, a child who was raised in the church. She is a mother of one handsome son, a sister and a friend. And the three words: Bubbly , loving, caring.
UC: Great stuff. When and how did your music career begin?
XD: I started singing in the church choir from the age of 12. In 2011 I met with the late musician Spokes H who discovered me and nurtured my talent.
UC: Looking at your career from the time it began to present date, what have been the major highlights?
XD: It has to be the first track I did with from Greece. Following closely would be sharing a stage with South African rapper Senyaka and of course my latest single with Andrea Kurato from Italy.
UC: Seeing that the South African music industry is so competitive would you say your music has been received positively?
XD: I appreciate the support I’ve been getting from those who do support. That being said, I am still up coming , and I really can’t wait to get as large a following as Bucie , Toshi and other big artistes because I look up to them.
UC: What are the moral and principle dilemmas you have come across in your career so far?
XD: I have met with few producers who tried taking advantage of me, but once a producer mentions sex then I’m out. That’s why I have opted to do my tracks with overseas producers because they do not expect anything in return.
UC: A lot of artistes struggle to break into the industry because of poor or no management. Have you roped in a management team or marketing agencies to push your music?
XD: I had a bad experience with my previous and right now I’m doing all the marketing and pushing myself. Hopefully, one day I’ll get a great team that will push me even further. Additionally the Southern African Music Rights Organisation (SAMRO) is there to protect artistes.
UC: Do you believe that all artistes are given equal opportunities when it comes to airplay?
XD: With local radio stations yes, because that’s where we all start. The dynamic changes however with signed artistes.
UC : Given a chance to advocate for artistes’ rights in your country what policies or recommendations would you give to policy makers as far as the music industry is concerned?
XD: All I would ask is for every artist to be given a fair shot when it comes to radio , TV and big events. I’m not saying everyone should be given the opportunity but there artistes who have really good music that deserves to be heard.
UC: Fast forward three years, where do you see yourself?
XD: In a music video, please God! With my music played in all radio stations, a collaboration with Heavy K and many more and I am working very hard to make this happen.
UC: Outside of music, what do you enjoy doing?
XD: Bowling, going out with friends, spending time with family and watching movies with my son.
UC: Any words of encouragement to upcoming artistes like yourself?
XD: Never give up! It’s never just a dream, work hard to achieve it no matter what obstacles you come across.
UC: Where can fans and potential promoters get hold of you?
XD: Xoly Devine on Instagram and Twitter. Xoly Devine Mabala on Facebook and my official email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Xoly’s music is available on Traxsource, iTunes and Soundcloud.