Today sees the release of a brand new EP by Durban’s latest export, MAJOZI. Entitled MOUNTAINS and released through Universal Music South Africa, this is MAJOZI’s second EP to date. His two latest singles, Someday and Fire, which earned him commercial radio success, are also products from this EP.
“I like the idea of people conquering the mountains which life throws at you. Everyone has a mountain that they have to overcome so I think everyone can relate to that. Making this EP seemed like a massive task in the beginning, but I’m so grateful that I went for it and now that it is done, I am pretty proud of what we’ve accomplished.”
MAJOZI started writing songs for the EP about a year ago. He admits to a slow start, but after finding some inspiration in the form of help from fellow Durban musicians, Josh and Brad Klynsmith (Gangs of Ballet), and teaming up with Gavin Edwards to write the first single, Someday, he started writing a few more songs for the EP. Stay With Me from the EP was written by Jethro Tait, and Fire and The Fight were written by Eugene Coetzer from MonArk.
“I’m always inspired by my faith, and how I see life through it. I just want to be able to tell stories and sing about everyday life that everyone goes through, but be able sing about it from my point of view.”
MAJOZI describes MOUNTAINS as more adventurous and upbeat compared to his previous offerings. Half of the EP (Someday, Knock Me Down and Stay With Me) was recorded at Universal Studios in Rosebank and produced by Carl Von Hoesslin, an EDM producer from ‘Isle of Sky’, who succeeded in blending MAJOZI’s style together with some dance elements.
The remainder of the songs (Darling, Fire and The Fight) were recorded at Lightstain Studios in Potchefstroom and produced by SAMA nominated producer, Ewald Jansen van Rensburg from MonArk.
Majozi is a proudly South African musician who has recently emerged onto the scene from the coastal city of Durban. At the age of thirteen, he started to teach himself guitar, which eventually led to him studying a foundation course in jazz and popular music at the University of KwaZulu Natal.
He describes his music as being Indie-folk with subtle influences of electro and attributes his faith as one of his musical inspirations.
In 2013, he released his First EP, Marvelous Light, which was recorded and produced by Warren Meyer of Doppler Studios. The album made it to no.9 overall on the South African iTunes chart and no.1 in the singer/songwriter category. Following the online success and popularity of the EP, his single, The River, was play-listed on 5FM, Kfm and other radio stations across the country. The infectious beat and meaningful lyrics have fans singing along with gusto at all the gigs he has been landing.
Over the past year, Majozi has been steadily climbing the South African music ladder, getting the opportunity to open for Matthew Mole, Gangs of Ballet, Zebra and Giraffe, Mango Groove, Matthew Mole and international artist, Yoav.
We managed to catch up with him for a short interview a little while ago, this is how it went down:
Very good thanks. Things seem to be picking up and I’m enjoying it
MA: Do you mind giving us a short background on how you started out in music?
I guess my career really started after I releases my debut EP ‘ Marvelous light’. I had no intention for it to do as well as it did. So it really came as a surprise and it opened up all the doors which have lead to where I am now.
MA: What artists have been major influences in your musical journey thus far?
Defintitly Gangs of Ballet, they have really opened the doors for alot of Durban bands and Brad Klynsmith is like my sensai ( mentor), Ard Matthews has also been a mentor to me, as well the band Monark. More musically bands like The Lumineers, The Killers, Kings of leon and Johnny Cash influence me alot.
MA: Last year was a really good year for you, highlighted by you opening for The Lumineers. What were some of your best moments from 2014?
Well opening for the Lumineers is right up there at the top. Playing at the Mr Price Pro and Durban Botanical gardens was also amazing. Last year was a great year and I’m super greatful.
MA: Last year saw some amazing new artists hit the scene, anyone that you think needs a special mention?
Yorke! Look out for this band. They are sure to take the country by storm. Amazing song writing and skillful musicality. They are the next big thing
MA: You are about to release your latest EP- MOUNTAINS. What can we expect from this release?
Fans can expect something a little different to my previous EP. It has a little more vibe and we’ve explored a little with my sound. Really proud of what we’ve done.
MOUNTAINS Track Listing:
Stay with me
Knock me down
MA: When are where can we get ourselves a copy of the EP?
The EP will be released at the end of March, and you can expect it to be everywhere!!
MA: How was the response to your EP, Marvelous Light, released last year? You definitely captured your audience with The River. Someday was another amazing single that you released late last year. We are very excited to hear this new EP!
When we 1st started recording Marvelous Light, i thought it would be a cool thing that I could show my grankids one day. I never thought that it would do so well and launch me into a music career. Its a dream come true
MA: Along with the EP releases, you also got music videos shot for The River & Someday. How was this experience for you? Anyone you wish to mention, who helped you in this experience?
My friend Tim Hay directed and edited both videos. He really is an amazing guy. All the extras that you see in my videos are my friends. Its really cool to be able to include them in the videos. It makes it alot more fun
MA: Are there any other projects that you are working on that we might be interested in hearing about?
Nothing definite or concrete yet, but keep your ears and eyes peeled
MA: Where can we follow you on social media?
www.majozi.co.za . It has links to all my social media pages and to my music and videos.
MA: Thanks for your time, good luck for your EP and the rest of 2015. 😀
Thank you for the Interview. All the best for you too