It changed everything

posted in: The Journey, The Music | 1

In 2005 I couldn’t read or write music. So I bought a second hand keyboard. Took piano lessons as well as voice lessons. All I wanted, at the time, was to be able to translate the songs in my heart into something beautiful. Music has always been a big part of my life.

Labels & radio didn’t quite get my sound. But I am blessed to have a manager who abandoned ‘the box’ and found an audience for my music. 2 EPs and an album later my music was being played (on radio) in 36 countries. The journey was long, often disheartening but I stuck by the music. My journey is obviously different from other artists who have a label and a big machine behind them. I am my own label and everything I do is D.I.Y. Sometimes this can be a lonely journey but it is always fulfilling.

In 2013 I entered the Wawela Music Awards. At first I thought “what are the chances?” but my manager persisted. On the day nominees were announced, I was unable to attend. But I was alerted via twitter by someone that was there. Not only was I nominated once but twice.

 

 

best female 2

He he he. One day people will spell Porcelain the correct way ;)
He he he. One day people will spell Porcelain the correct way ;)

Knowing that I was nominated was enough for me. The Wawela Music Awards focus on singers/songwriters and composers with accomplishments on the local and international stage. I am by no means a ‘star’ in South Africa but my music has a life of its own outside of the borders. I was happy just to be recognised alongside one of my favourite artists (Lira).

My manager informed me that there would be a performance on the night of the awards. It was at this point that I called my father. Voice shaking, I told him that I felt overwhelmed. He assured me that I would be fine and would come back with one award. I didn’t believe him. Award night arrived and my stomach was in knots. Only God knows how I got through the performance of Johnny.

Johnny performance

Everything changed after that. The night is kind of a blur but I remember hearing my name. Giving a teary acceptance speech (I really should have written one in advance), changing my outfit, sitting down again and hearing my name again. Just like that! My whole career had changed.

Accepting my second award
Accepting my second award
I look terrified because I was. It all happened so quickly.
I look terrified because I was. It all happened so quickly.

 

That night I got to talk to Johnny Clegg, Mam’ Dorothy Mauku, Ray Phiri, Zwai Bala, Lira and many other people that I had admire for many many years. I could, honestly, go on and on about selling more albums (via my site) & getting booked for more gigs (both true). But being recognised for your craft, meeting other creative people (who want to collaborate) and being a part of something so wonderful… Nothing can compare to it.

There are 9 days till entries close for the 2014 Wawela Music Awards. Enter. You never know how it will change your life/career: Enter here.

The week in pics

I’m gonna try this out. If it doesn’t work then we’re just gonna act like it was a once off kinda-thing. Okay? Good. I won’t do this every week because… D.I.Y life.

Monday

wk1 Monday
After a super long Monday I had coffee at Vida. All I was thinking about was how much water I still had to drink. I’m trying to drink more water. It’s getting easier.

Tuesday

Went to dinner and a movie. No I didn't go see Khumba. It was Thor and OMG I LOVED it. Took a pic of the box because I thought it was cute.
Went to dinner and a movie. No I didn’t go see Khumba. It was Thor and OMG I LOVED it. Took a pic of the box because I thought it was cute.

Wednesday

wk1 Wed1
Had my first magazine shoot &b received awesome news about music things in 2014. *scream* I wanna share but the manager lady will murderise me. Also was reunited with my favourite makeup artist (Malinette Newman)

 

Went for burgers (and cheese fries) at Clarke’s. Lovely place :) Manager lady took me there to celebrate my first magazine shoot and super awesome 2014 things.

Thursday

Thursday was another super long day. Missed a deadline (writing things). So I decided a pre-bedtime selfie would be a good way to cheer myself up.
Thursday was another super long day. Missed a deadline (writing things). So I decided a pre-bedtime selfie would be a good way to cheer myself up.

Friday

Work function. I didn't feel like talking to anybody because I am only at the 'office' for 3.5hrs a day. They don't know me and I didn't feel like making 'fake office party conversation'.
Work function. I didn’t feel like talking to anybody because I am only at the ‘office’ for 3.5hrs a day. They don’t know me and I didn’t feel like making ‘fake office party conversation’.

Saturday

It was raining ALL DAY, so we went to Tasha's for the red velvet cupcakes & to 'watch the rain'. He he he
It was raining ALL DAY, so we went to Tasha’s for the red velvet cupcakes & to ‘watch the rain’. He he he

Sunday

It stopped raining and I took a walk around the hood. Also I had a million DVDs to drop off. Let us never talk about my 'late fines'.
It stopped raining and I took a walk around the hood. Also I had a million DVDs to drop off. Let us never talk about my ‘late fines’.

My New Music Video (Hot Pink)

posted in: The Journey, The Music | 0

Late last year I started releasing my new single (Hot Pink). Instead of sending it to radio and being annoyed by responses like “we’re not quite sure what format it is” or whatevs… I decided to release it ‘face to face’. So I went around Cape Town and introsuced myself to people (mainly at offices) and played them my new song.

We had so much fun doing this. My friend (Linda) was at some of these ‘Hot Pink Serenades’ and he put together this music video. I was not joking when I said I am a D.I.Y artist :)

Award Winning Album & stuff…

A few months ago my Manager Lady (Marcee) told me about the Wawela Music Awards. “Wouldn’t it be cool if you were nominated?” she said. I shrugged and moved on with life. You could say that I am not exactly an ‘award artist’. It’s just not something I consider. I spend my time dreaming up fantastic songs, videos and performances.

A few months later I heard via Phiona, from Afripop Mag, that I was nominated for 2 awards. This all happened on Twitter.

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I excitedly called Marcee to let her know that I was nominated. She LOST her damn mind ha ha ha. I called my dad and said “I’m nervous because I am up against Lira in both categories.” My father responded “Lira is great but she is not unbeatable”. Knowing that my parents thought I could win was enough for me.

On the 28th (June 2013) we were all dressed up and ready for the big night.

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Marcee in the waiting area. She kept saying “My Afro is so well behaved tonight” ha ha ha. LOVE that Melody Ehsani neck piece she is wearing

Honestly, I was more concerned with my performance than I was about winning. Whenever I perform I focus all of my energy on the performance. Once that is done, I become normal again. I had just finished my performance when I heard “Black Porcelain”. It was for Best Creative Album.

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I don’t remember what I said. I hope I thanked all the right people. (pic courtesy of SAMRO)

Everything after that is a bit of a blur. I went and posed for a pic (forgive the crazy look).

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My mom always tells me not to pull funny faces. She says this smile makes me look crazy ha ha ha. (Pic courtesy of SAMRO)

I had to get out of my performance dress and as soon as that was over I thought I could relax. While I was looking for a wine glass, I heard “Black Porcelain” again. I couldn’t believe it. It was my second award. TWO BLOODY AWARDS!!

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Well this smile is not so bad (Pic courtesy of SAMRO)
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Aaaaand back to the crazy smile ha ha ha. I was the biggest winner that night. Surely that’s a good excuse for the crazy eyes? (Pics courtesy of SAMRO)

Needless to say Marcee and I partied (like it was 1999) and then took one last picture before we passed out (promptly)

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2 Witches. 2 Awards. We were exhausted at this point. Exhausted & happy team :)

So there you go! I can now say Invincible Summer is an award winning album and so am I. Ha ha ha ha. This silly post has taken me much longer than I thought it would. Love & strength to professional bloggers. I need a nap.

Johnny

posted in: The Journey, The Music | 0

On the 28th of June I performed at The Wawela Music Awards (post about that to follow). I performed a song that I wrote in my first years as a Songwriter. In 2005 I couldn’t read or write music properly. I bought a second hand keyboard and took piano lessons. One of the first songs I wrote was Johnny.

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Pic courtesy of SAMRO

 

To hear people tell me how much they loved the song… It meant so much. More than any of them will ever know. Ray Phiri (of Stimela) said he couldn’t believe that we (songwriters at the awards) were part of his legacy. I was truly honoured to have a legend like him say such wonderful things about my gift. It’s a gift that I am still exploring and having so much fun with.

2014 Travels (option 1)

I thought I wanted to go to Brazil for the World Cup next year. After much thought I realised that I’m just not passionate enough and my FOMO is non existent. So… We’ve decided that we’re going to…

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Madrid. Looking pretty & lit up

This seems much better than being in a place where everyone is there to ‘have fun’ and ‘enjoy the soccer fever’.

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Get some sun in Barcelona

I better start learning some Spanish.Image

VALENCIA!!!

Need to learn how to say ‘this drink is awesome! I love this song… now kiss me.’ Kidding… Kinda… Not really… Maybe.

Have you been to Spain? Did you like it? What didn’t you like about it? Where should I ABSOLUTELY go and what should I miss? Let me know.

Album Review (Rushay Booysen – PE)

posted in: The Journey, The Music | 0

It’s been a while since I’ve shared a review. I’m back with some more Summer 196 love. The last review was by Nadia from New York, this time we move back to SA with Rushay Booysen. I don’t change these reviews in any way. I copy and paste them as I receive them. So here is Rushay’s review —->

I’ve been graced with a long overdue taste of your debut album
“Invincible Summer” ,A delightful twelve track album that delivers on a
lot of highs. I’ve got to say this about your album its simplistically
graceful and delivers a musical punch.The album also manages to strike
a balance between production and vocals.I was extremely awed by the
slick production and how you maintained a message when the music could
easily have overshadowed your vocals and ultimately your message.Black
Porcelain manages to create an album that is musically and visually
appealing

Correct me if im wrong but this is a musical diary,written,compiled
and delivered by Black Porcelain! I can title this album jazz,soul,pop
but i would rather label it music cos it appeals to any person that
appreciates good music.There’s a number of standout tracks that caught
my ear but i will focus on “Hot Pink” a banger that could lace any
dance floor at Ministry of Sound or Pacha.I love how you able to
navigate through emotions and how well the tracks balance each
other.My favorite track on the album is  “Johnny” this piano laden
track also exposes Black Porcelain’s vocal range,while expressing some
heartfelt emotion over this “Johnny”.Without saying too much,purchase
the album and put on your Skullcandy’s

-Rushay Booysen

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Look at those eyes. Are those they eyes of a liar? NO! Rushay is no liar, so you better get yourself a copy of Invincible Summer
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That hat is EVERYTHING!!

The album is available from iTunes or you can get it from me and I will post it to you.

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The Blues

posted in: Ramblings, The Journey | 0

I came back to Cape Town and thought everything would just fall back into place. Losing someone is major. The emotions are unbelievably complicated and heavy. Didn’t feel much like posting here or doing anything else. BUT…. I’m back!! Sorta. Not 100% yet but ready to keep things moving.

Oh it is getting COLD in Cape Town. My apartment is cold even in Summer so you can imagine what kind of madness I’m experiencing right now.

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Nancy always cheers me up :)
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