Zolani was born and raised in the Gqeberha in the Eastern Cape. She is a self proclaimed extroverted introvert! What we see is a beautiful, kind and caring soul, always bursting with love
Zolani lives in beautiful Cape Town which is the perfect place to stir her adoration for the outdoors and the many nature breaks, mostly in the sea, which she loves so much with her two gentle souled boys. A passionate ambassador for the SeaChange Project, she has fostered a deep connection with the ocean as well as her ancestors through her work here.
For 17 years we have known Zolani as the face of FreshlyGround - Doo Be Doo will forever be sketched into our South African hearts - but the time has come for this bird to fly and begin her own next chapter and a part of this was telling her life story. She did this recently through a play, a chronicle of her life so far. “I did it to understand myself more than for others to understand me.”
It was not what many came to expect but what it was was raw, open, and honest. The story of a girl whose life was forever changed after the untimely death of her loving mother at the age of 6…how she survived a wounded predator and went on to live a beautiful life.
And so follows the transformation from the Zolani we know to The One Who Sings.
In her own words: ‘I've been a tremendous performer for nearly four decades. Now I want to write and sing for me. I want to learn how to dance for me. To sit in silence with me. To light fires only I will feel the warmth of and whisper to myself secrets only I will ever hear.”
There is a clear sense of things ending and also things beginning for Zolani… She is continuously writing new music and we can’t get enough of her latest single (https://open.spotify.com/album/1lkGOneZLUrH2iyUHOYhct?si=6hTfxEUJRfC874rjRH729Q&dl_branch=1).
If you want to see and listen to more of Zolani the Storyteller, we highly recommend you grab a cup of tea and skip along to https://www.theonewhosings.com/my-inspiration-talks for a glimpse into her life growing up in the last throes of Apartheid.
Q&A with Zolani
What is your morning ritual?
Early morning meditation and prayer followed by stretches.
Favourite local coffee spot?
I like The Power & The Glory down the road from my place, but I make my own best coffee!
What inspires you?
Being in Nature!
Who are your biggest influences?
Craig Foster is quite a big influence on me at the moment. He introduced me to a deeper connection with the ocean which led me back to a deeper connection to my ancestors.
Which current music trends / artists are you following?
I’m very much not trendy… I’m also extremely not up to date with what’s happening in music funnily enough, although I heard another absolute modern classic from Bruno Mars recently.
What & where was your most memorable concert?
I’ve had quite a few of those but definitely being on stage with my Ultimate - Stevie Wonder - at the legendary Radio City Music Hall in NYC in 2010 was a major major highlight.
Your go-to recipe?
Probably roast lamb with vegetables. Simple…
What are you currently reading?
I’m reading a Sindiwe Mangoma book called When The Village Sleeps. Enjoying it.
On weekends you can usually find Zolani ….
At home with the kids being extremely relaxed.