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Stellar rapper Gaby XO has been in the groove in the past year. She released her first track “Too Easy” in November 2021. The music video premiered on MTV after heightened excitement amongst her fans.

The video received critical acclaim from industry heavyweights who praised her lyrical prowess, on-camera confidence, and overall delivery of her project. 

Gaby XO has since been working on upcoming projects in the studio. From time to time, she has been teasing her fans with snippets from her upcoming musical releases. The response has been phenomenal: they all want the songs dropped ASAP.

Gaby XO

We had a sit-down with Gaby to find out what she’s been up to and what her fans can expect from her. Enjoy the conversation and be inspired:

Fashion Today: How do you feel your fashion style has changed in the last few years?

Gaby XO: I think I’ve been more brand conscious in terms of style and what I wear in terms of being an artist, I think I’ve also become a lot more confident in my body and I feel comfortable expressing that in my style. 

Also read: Gaby Xo: My journey hasn’t been easy at all

FT Who do you feel is the most stylish artist of all time and why?

GXO: Rihanna, I love how she’s just so comfortable in her own skin and that reflects in her style, she wears what she wants to.

Gaby XO

FT:  What are some of your favorite fashion brands that you’d love to work with?

GXO: I would love to work with local fashion brands, I love how my country’s fashion brands have included different cultures in the designs. Names like David Tlale and MaXhosa.

FT: Tell us about your experience so far in music. What’s the biggest lesson so far?

GXO: My biggest lesson in music I’ve learned is to always remember why I fell in love with music and why I chose to pursue this dream, I never want to allow the music business side of things to distract me from why I began in the first place. I use to always focus on getting the business side of it right that I forget the love I have for it.

Gaby XO

FT: What has been your favorite musical project and why?

GXO: My EP, I’ve been working on it for a while now. This is the first body of work I’ll be presenting to my audience and I want it to be something very special. I’ve been learning and growing during the process of it and I’m just so excited to put it out there.

Also read: Meet Lihle Ndelu, The Fast-Rising TikTok Dancer

FT: What’s the most important thing you consider before collaborating with someone?

GXO: Brand alignment, I also consider if the collaboration will make sense in terms of who I am as an artist and my future plans.

FT: What do you regard as your biggest achievement in music so far?

GXO: It’s a personal achievement but shooting my music video for Too Easy was definitely an achievement for me.. as a little girl I always wanted my own music video and I’m really grateful I got to do my first music video way I wanted it to be done.

Gaby XO

FT: Do you have any other interests apart from music that your fans should know?

GXO: Yes, I want them to know that I’m very skilled at archery so if The Hunger Games ever need me I’m ready.

FT: Tell us a bit about your upcoming projects…

GXO: There are a few freestyle visuals you can expect, as well as a single after that my EP will be dropping.

FT: Finally, where will Gaby XO be in the next 5 years? 

GXO: I can never say for sure, all I can say is that I pray I’m where God needs me to be in 5 years’ time and I pray that I’m still healthy, doing what I love and by then I would like to have a really strong name for myself in the music industry.

 

Fast-rising star Lihle Ndelu is a talent to watch. She has taken over TikTok by storm, often showcasing her perfectly choreographed dance moves. Watching her videos, you can instantly tell she’s already a pro-dancer who will ultimately collaborate with the biggest stars on the continent and globally.

We had a virtual interview with the content creator to find out what she’s been up to and what her fans should expect. Ndelu, who is based in Cape Town discussed how she got onto the platform, her experiences so far, and her aspirations. Have a read and be inspired.

Lihle Ndelu

Fashion Today: You grew to over 10,000 followers on TikTok by doing clean, dance-focused content. How do you feel about that?

Lihle Ndelu: I am very proud of myself for this, although there were times when I felt like my account was not growing, the hate comments got to me and I almost gave up at some point but because I have more than 10,000 people believing in me, I chose to carry on. 

FT: You joined the platform just recently. What took you so long?

LN: I did not know how TikTok worked, but I knew I wanted to be a part of the TikTok community. I was still finding myself, to tell the truth, I was actually scared of putting myself out there not knowing what kind of feedback I would receive. 

Lihle Ndelu

FT: What’s your biggest goal in content creation?

LN: To build me as a brand, and to be an example to people especially young children that it doesn’t matter where you come from, you can do anything you put your mind to. 

Also read: Meet Carrie Wahu: The Gorgeous Sprite Influencer

FT: How do you balance school time with content creation?

LN: I have created myself a set routine based on the school timetable that I follow, which helps me with my time management. Outside of that, I do TikTok and engage with my followers whenever I can. 

FT: How would you describe your content creation journey so far?

LN: It’s been challenging, creative, rocky at worst, but still fun. 

Lihle Ndelu

FT: Who is your dream collaborator on TikTok?

LN: Sphokuhle N had to be one of the people I would love to collaborate with on TikTok. I just love her energy. 

FT: You’re doing an art degree with a focus on theater and performance. Is this something you’ve always wanted to pursue while younger?

LN: I was always passionate about dance, however, it had never crossed my mind to pursue a degree within the stream until I was 15. Before that, I had always wanted to become a pilot. 

Also read: 10 Times Boity Killed It With Her Style

FT: Who would you say is your biggest fan and supporter?

LN: My current boyfriend is my biggest fan and supporter, he constantly reminds me to create content, and also motivates me when I am feeling down as a result of hate comments. 

Lihle Ndelu

FT: How would you describe your fashion style?

LN: I do not necessarily have a fashion style that I like or love, what I wear usually just depends on my mood, but in most cases, I’m either wearing baggy clothes or gym wear however, I do love wearing cropped tops, short dresses and mini skirts. 

FT: Finally, what should your newly gained fans expect from you in the next 1 year?

LN: They should expect more content, and maybe a YouTube channel.

 

She’s had a major breakthrough in 2022 and has been trending on TikTok, Twitter, WhatsApp and other social media platforms. Carrie Wahu is the beauty who essentially made the Sprite campaign go viral.

We previously interviewed Carrie Wahu and had a candid conversation where she opened up about her journey. She spoke about her natural hair journey, as well as how she’s become an influencer to reckon with.

“For my very first partnership. I just shot my shot. It was with this hair care company called Uhai Hair. I actually love their products. I just introduced myself, told them what I do and they believed in me which was great.,” she revealed.

As the collaboration was a success, Carrie Wahu went on to work with fellow creatives on photoshoots, events, and much more.

carrie wahu

So far, Carrie has worked with other brands such as Jumia and The CocaCola Company. She’s truly a fast-growing influencer that world-class brands are willing to work with.

On her Instagram page, her fans have thronged the comments section to express how they loved the campaign.

@rugurutanya This is AMAZING!!🤩🤩❤️❤️ so so happy for you!!!❤️

@cindyk003 Beautiful 😍

@foi____ Now Sprite is my fav because Carrie said so😩

@mumb._i The whole Kenya is SHAKING right now 😍😍😍😍

@envy.fransine You’re such a cutieeee🥺❤️

@chelseaatieno YES MAAM!!! Get that bag!

The photoshoot was done by photographer Michael Brian, known as @casshis on Instagram. He covers portraits, fashion, and beauty. It was definitely a fantastic collaboration.

Here are more shots from the campaign:

carrie_wahu

carrie wahu

carrie_wahu

carrie_wahu

 

I  got to sit down with Nomazizi, South Africa’s fast-rising commercial model and influencer. She is a graduate of Duke University in the USA and the daughter of Mandisa Muriel Lindelwa Maya, the President of the Supreme Court of Appeal in South Africa. She was appointed by former President Jacob Zuma. Maya is the first woman to hold the office since the establishment of the court in 1910; basically, she made history

Despite the modeling industry being a tumultuous world, only courteous to the Gigi Hadids of this world, she is not holding back…she does what she is passionate about.

nomazeezee
Instagram: @nomazeezee

According to Tracy Mutinda, an editor at The Star newspaper in Kenya, your profession shouldn’t limit your passion.

“Whether you are a lawyer or a pilot, that shouldn’t tie you down from pursuing whatever you love. You can be a model or video vixen and don’t mind about being judged by people. Just do what you love. If you can multi-task, do it,” she opines.

In our conversation, Nomazeze talks about how she rose to be a big social media influencer in the SA.

BMRA: What inspired you to start your natural hair journey, and tell us your go-to hair products at the moment?

Nomazizi: I’ve always had hair that was at least shoulder length, but as I got older I realized that it seldom got longer and often returned to that length, so I started doing some research on how to grow my hair longer and that’s how I stumbled onto the natural hair movement. Right now my hair is in box braids so mostly I’m using my favorite braid spray from Jabu Stone as well as castor oil for my edges.

nomazeezee

B: How did you feel when you got featured on a Kenyan magazine (Pulse) yet you’re based in South Africa?

N: I felt great! But seriously, it’s an honor and I’m grateful for the appreciation.

B: Do you intend to pursue tennis professionally or is it just a hobby?

N: Lol it’s barely even a hobby!

B: I understand that you visited Duke University sometime back, what’s the South African thing you encountered in the USA?

N: I was studying at Duke. It’s in North Carolina so the community isn’t quite as diverse or cosmopolitan as, for example, a place like New York or LA. I didn’t really come across anything that was distinctly South African except for this time I heard one of my American friends playing a song by Black Coffee. That was a surprise so far from home.

B: Why did you choose to study law? Did your mother influence your decision?

N: I studied law because at school I was pretty good at debating, English was my strongest subject and I was an avid reader and writer. My first choice was journalism, but I decided that my personality was better suited to the law. I wouldn’t say that my mom really influenced my decision, but she definitely did expose me to what a life in law looked like.

B: What your opinion about the state of fashion modeling in Africa in regards to Instagram influencers?

N: I think it’s pretty exciting. Everyone seems to be having fun and trying new things, which is what it’s all about.

nomazeezee

B: What’s the best advice your mother has ever given you?

N: To hang in there because all rough patches eventually pass. When you’re an ambitious person, you tend to encounter a lot of rough patches and it’s always nice to think back to that reminder.

B: How do you feel about the South Africa Court president being a woman, especially since the court was established in 1910?

N: I feel incredibly proud, not just because a black woman has finally penetrated such an important court, but because it’s my mom. It’s also exciting because it inspires other women in the legal profession and shows us that we can achieve anything with hard work.

B: Have you ever been cyber bullied because of being a “thick” model? How do you handle such challenges?

N: Hahaha! No I don’t recall being cyber bullied for being thick. I generally delete all negative comments immediately and don’t let them get to me. After all, I’m an ordinary person and I don’t try to be perfect.

nomazeezee

B: Most ladies who follow you on social media love your outfit choices and how you piece everything together; tell us your secret to shopping. Are you more of an online shopper or you prefer physical shopping?

N: I looooove online shopping! I find that physical shopping is too time consuming and I don’t enjoy going to the mall, looking at and trying on clothes and then standing in line to buy them. I often know exactly what I’m looking for, so it’s convenient to type that into a search bar on websites. But the convenience can easily lead to overspending, I’ve probably spent hundreds of thousands on clothes in the past year.

B: What’s your diet like? How do you maintain your body?

N: I really only diet when I’m working because it’s easier to stick to a routine during the day. I’ll usually snack throughout the day on fruit, nuts, protein shakes. Then at night I’ll eat whatever I want, like meat and veggies and some sort of starch. Often I’m too tired though and will probably just get Nandos. I do try to get to the gym at least 4-5 times a week and mostly do cardio, and luckily my body responds quite well to minimal exercise.

nomazeezee

B: If you were to go on vacation on a remote island with an African celebrity, who would it be and why?

N: That’s a tough one. Probably Siphokazi because she has such an amazing voice (this is assuming she’d be willing to sing every day!). Also, she’s Xhosa-speaking like me so it would be nice to have someone with whom to converse in my mother tongue. Or maybe Sindiwe Magona, because she’s such an amazing writer. I’d love to pick her brain.

Also read: Get To Know Fancy Makadia: Her Source Of Money, Fashion Inspiration & Big Dreams

B: What’s your long term career plan…do you plan to take your modeling to another level or you would love to fully concentrate with Law?

N: I don’t know yet. That’s what’s so great about living in this time (anything is possible). I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

B: What’s the best advice you would tell to your younger sibling?

N: I’d tell them to say yes to new opportunities and experiences. Often as young people we’re in such a rush to “find ourselves” that we miss out on a lot of enriching experiences that take us out of our comfort zones, simply because we think they’re not “our thing” or that we won’t be good at them.

nomazeezee

B: If you were to be in a movie with your all time woman crush, who would it be and why?

N: Gal Gadot, she’s Wonder Woman (need I say more?)

B: When was the last time you cried and why?

N: I cried at the airport in 2016 when I moved out of the country for a year. Goodbyes are tough.

B: Finally, what’s the best thing that a fan has ever done to you?

N: My followers are generally friendly and supportive. I wouldn’t say any one did something in particular but they do send kind messages which I appreciate.

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