By Ntombi Nkosi
AT the tender age of 10, the phenomenal song bird, known for her big songs and high notes, Mmatema Moremi performed in front of an audience of about 500 people.
It was in that moment that she knew exactly what she wanted to do with her life.
First life had to happen, including the insistence of parents for her to get an education.
She qualified in Linguistics from Tshwane University of Technology (TUT). Yet immediately after her graduation she knew that she was done with linguistic.
Coming from a family of academics was an obstacle she was prepared to overcome. And she had the talent to back her.
Even though she works as a translator for short stint, music was still her first love, always listening to music in her ears.
It was when she had tunnel vision for her dream that things started taking shape and obstacle were not so difficult to manage.
The songstress says sometimes one has to get so close to their vision that it almost feels like it happened automatically.
Mmatema, who shot to fame in 2015, entered the singing competition Idols SA three times before she was selected in the Top 10 to compete for the title.
It was on her third attempt that her talent was really recognised.
The 26-year old who hails from Zebediela in Limpopo, has now endeared herself to many South Africans and has become a household name, says having a crystal clear vision powered the chase for her dream despite falling down along the way.
Mmatema says she went to Idols three times because she believed in her dream and wanted a platform that would fast track her career
She says half the time people want to achieve things but they are not prepared to enter into a space where they get things done.
“I encourage people especially woman that no matter how many times you fall or fail. It can be done. Go out there and do it for yourself, once you start you realise how easy it is,” she says.
She says some people want to own businesses but they have no idea where CIPC (Companies and Intellectual Property Commission) is, no idea on how to go about registering a company.
“You need to walk closely to your vision. Walk close to the door, don’t just sit and say ag I’ve failed, keep going, sometimes doors are out of service,” says Mmatema with a big smile.
She advises that one has to develop a heavier passion.
“There are times where you have to knock and be buzzed in. There are investors out there, they need you to put a vision on paper, to see how much you want something”.
Owning her music
Mmatema said she loves the adrenalin that comes with owning a company because she loves learning and growing.
She launched her company primarily because she wanted to own her music and work.
In 2016 she started Mmatema Moremi Media Production.
She says when she started, the plan was not to be a big record company but to be to be independent and do her own thing.
“I did this to grow and learn, I am receiving messages from people who want me to sign them, but the business has not yet arrived at that stage,” she says.
She admits to not having an easy time.
“I have had my ups and down, failing and gaining. For me, every gain is very amazing because I know it’s the people that are there for me not just a big name that I am depending on,” she says.
She highlighted the importance of owning one’s craft, she advised that one needs a lifting hand when starting-off, however, they should do as much research as they could to grow.
“The most vital thing of being independent is the personal growth, you do your own research, and know why you are doing it and have no one to blame but yourself if you fail, you get to eat your own money,” she says.
Mmatema is currently presenting Gospel Unplugged on SABC1. She initially received a call in November 2017 about the show.
The show was such as hit with the audience that it received a Crown Gospel Award in December.
She regards this as one example of how God opens doors for her.
“It’s really in God’s plans, the bible God’s grace will cover you. I am the living proof of that because everything that he gives me, I don’t struggle with”.
Mmatema also has an album out titled Love Praise and Worship, she won two awards from the Limpopo Gospel Music Awards, categories of Best Female and Best New Comer.
Her album was nominated four times.
“To me it was just a pleasure to receive such because when I did the album, I was very sceptical coming from pop competition and you have to do a different genre, it was not an easy shift,” says Mmatema.
Mmatema has plans to launch a foundation.
She will also pursue an acting career on Rhythm City where audiences can watch her.
“My ultimate goal is music, the way I love singing, I love performing. I think from now on, I am really going to push my music. I would rather have so many songs that just show off who I really am than wait for that one song. I am going to release a lots of songs,” says Mmatema.
For the foreseeable future she will not be collaborating with anyone else because she wants to focus on her brand, she says.