Bula Music, Johannesburg
Ten years down the line and Bula Music is still on top of its game. Founded by Harvey Roberts, Peter Tladi and Clive Hardwick in early 1998 and later joined by Tshepo Zuz’ Muzi Nzimande, Bula Music has proven to be a real South African success story. Having been involved on a number of different levels in the music industry, these four principals combined their strengths and experience, and set out to create a company that would look for and promote new talent.
From the company’s very first release, “Crocodile” by Splash in early 1998 which went gold, to numerous multi-platinum albums to date, Bula Music has firmly established itself as one of the leading independent record companies in South Africa.
Perhaps most notable amongst Bula Music’s previous artists are the likes of Boom Shaka, Ihashi Elimhlope and Freddy Gwala. Yet no better example exists of Bula's growth and success than the Prince of Gospel himself, Lundi Tyamara. After years of working as a backing singer, it was in September of 1998 that he was introduced to Bula Music by Tshepo “Zuz’ Muzi” Nzimande and finally had the chance to discover his own potential to be a star. His debut album “Mphefumlo Wam” was an instant hit, with sales reaching multi-platinum. His long list of accolades includes a Kora Award for Africa’s Best Gospel Artist in 2006, a SAMA award for Best African Gospel Artist in the country, as well as a Channel O and a Duku Duku Award. He recently won a SAMA Award for the Best African Traditional Gospel Album at the 14th Annual MTN South African Music Awards, proving that he is not called the Prince of Gospel in vain. His achievements may be the obvious example of Bula Music’s success but of course this is only a small part of the story.
Gospel sensation Sechaba is another success story that cannot go unmentioned. His rags to riches story truly demonstrate Bula Music’s commitment to discovering and nurturing hidden talent. From street kid to national gospel superstar, Sechaba’s lifestory is touching and inspirational. His self titled debut album released in 2005 is amazingly still selling like hotcakes and has even exceeded double platinum status. His DVD is also a top seller.
Whilst Bula Music has enjoyed success in many different genres, including jazz, it is in gospel and maskandi music that we have come to dominate. Our gospel artists have grown to be household names in the South African music scene. Bula Music has been instrumental in the careers of Veliswa, Kholeka, S’fiso, Dumi and Zodwa to name but a few. These artists are all recognisable as brilliant artists in their own right, upholding the highest standards of excellence in South Africa’s music industry.
KeywordsMusic Industry, Independent Record Companies
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