AFRICA RISING: BUDDING AFRO SOUL MUSICIAN LADY X TALKS THE BUSINESS OF MUSIC AND OWNING A RECORD LABEL
There’s no question about it, Lady X was born to perform! This beauty has a voice that has left seasoned artists in awe, her talent and ability to adapt to any genre of music further proves that she was born to be on a stage.
She caught the eye of music listeners with Mo Flava’s 2011 remix of Mr Cee’s “Xivumba” by DJ Micks of Kalawa Jazmee. This remix became an instant hit and fast became one of the highest rotating songs on youth and urban radio stations.
What followed was an instantly successful debut single entitled, “Loving You” featuring UHURU and Black Motion, that ushered in a new era in her musical career. “Loving You” received recognition, dominating the number one position on South Africa’s national, multi provincial, commercial and community radio stations as well as Botswana, Nigeria, The US and The UK.
After years of perfecting her music career, a new beginning for Lady X arrived in 2017 – she decided to start out on her own and establishing Testo Records.
Under her label – Testo Records, Lady X’s single titled ‘Nguwe’ ushers the audience into her debut album titled; ‘LOVE. LIFE.COMPLICATED’ was released on the 17 August 2018, where she fused her Afro Soul, Afro Pop and Soulful Afro House background with live session musicians, recordings and a new authentically South African writing style.
This is what Lady X had to say about releasing her first album under self owned music powerhouse – Testo Records…
- Take us through the process of making your first album ?
Like any passionate artiste, I really had to put myself into a highly vibration – a Higher Power driven creative state. Creating the album and sound took a year and I can truthfully say it’s changed my life ! It was a process filled with anxiety, stress, moments of pure joy, but most importantly, I found that this entire experience is a process of self discovery accompanied with a incomparable sense of achievement.
- The album was released under your record label Testo Records, was this a strategic move ?
After leaving my previous record label, I had to make a decision for my career – one that was to take matters into my own hands and create a future and legacy for myself, my music and the “Lady X” brand. I wanted to create music that would get me the recognition I yearned for as an artist and I believed I could do that through creating a sound that is authentically South African, a fusion sound of Afro Soul/Pop and house music.
- What did it take for you to start Testo Records, please take us through that experience?
I would forget to let Faith do Her work, so that created moments of depression and fear for my future. I had to go through all that,to realise that this is about getting up and finding funding and business partners that believed in me. When Testo was established, I was now a record label manager and artist – it was all on me, to build a team around me with the same or an even bigger vision for my dream and brand. I am still growing and am looking forward to a future filled with success and my dreams coming into fruition with my team.
- Marketing and distribution are key to the business of music – how are you handling that?
I am now the first black female to get a distribution deal independently and that is just the first of my accomplishments. I have chosen a publicist and creative director that turn my vision into reality. And at the end of day it all boils down to me & my team constructing the marketing and distribution plan, which we then execute together – myself included.
- What next can we expect from Lady X and Testo Records?
We can expect Lady X to keep going with her album tour and to finally perform at Summer festivals around South Africa. I will also be infiltrating the continental market and the globe, representing South Africa as a new idea to the global pop culture landscape and sound.