The multi-talented, 23-year-old vocalist, Afrohouse producer, photographer, pianist, actor & songwriter Singabakho Funokuhle Mthembu (known as Singapoure by his fans) was announced as the latest winner of the Hunter’s x Jacquel Culture House (JCH) nationwide Talent Search. The Hunter’s x JCH is a partnership between TRESOR and Hunter’s, South Africa’s most refreshing cider. It aims to uplift young musicians and provide them with a platform to launch their careers nationally.
As part of his prize, the KwaZulu-Natal-born and raised artist received an opportunity to work with multi-award-winning African Pop Maverick and co-founder of the Hunter’s x JCH initiative, TRESOR. Singabakho relished the opportunity to work with TRESOR and to grace South African TV screens again after participating in Idols season 15. “I feel like working with TRESOR, and the team has grown me as an artist already. I have always been missing key industry knowledge to guide my dream and, ultimately, my music career. This opportunity has given me a platform to grow my sound while also focusing on the management after the music”, says Singabakho. The initiative is an empowerment platform for young musicians that provides support and career development through ongoing mentorship and industry knowledge sharing: #RefreshingtheRules of the music industry.
Singabakho has been recording music for just over seven years, but his love for music began at the tender age of 8 years when he started singing at his local church in Umhlabuyalingana in KZN near Manguze where he is currently based. “Music is my first love, and as cheesy as it may sound, I didn’t choose music, I believe that music chose me,” says Singabakho. In terms of challenges he is facing, Singabakho has been finding it difficult to publish some of his work, he has hard drives full of music, and the ongoing mentorship has helped him navigate music publishing. His sound is mainly Afro Soul and Afro Pop music with a blend of Traditional R&B music, he coins it ‘African R&B’ music and he is also into afro house music. It is no surprise that when asked about his biggest influences, Singabakho believes that John Legend and Black Coffee largely influence his sound.
“I live on a farm, and I am pretty hands-on with the care and day-to-day running of it. It is difficult to find the time to record more music. The studio equipment I received from the initiative shortens the production time. I would like to one day establish a school of arts with a big studio to assist upcoming musicians and artists to perfect their craft,” concludes the winner.
Follow Hunter’s and Jacquel Culture House’s social media platforms for more information and announcements around this #RefreshTheRules initiative.