Lungi Naidoo returns to music with a new EP
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After a lengthy hiatus, singer and songwriter Lungi Naidoo has returned with a new EP to the industry that made her famous .
Known for working with some of the biggest names in the music industry, including Black Coffee, Lungi scored a Metro FM Music Award nomination for Best RnB Album for “Black Diamond”, her debut album back in 2016.
Born and raised in KwaDukuza in KwaZulu-Natal, the star took a hiatus after a bad and public break-up with her then-partner, actor Brian Temba.
Now, after working with producers like Dantae Johnson and Nigeria’s Tega, she has released her latest offering, “Courage”.
Naidoo started work on her new EP in February after countless video calls, where she workshopped the songs with her producers who are based in London and Lagos.
“I started working on some songs in 2020 but kept hitting dead ends. I got frustrated and shelved everything.
“Some call this writer’s block. I had it bad and it affected my confidence a lot. But in 2021 I decided to try again, but this time I could feel that I was ready.
“I definitely knew what I wanted and I am so glad that Pete Martin helped me get there by introducing me to Dante Johnson who held my hand through the entire process,” she said.
“Courage” is Naidoo going back to her first love, which was the very inspiration behind this EP and her desire of wanting to put out a body of work that was filled with positive energy and songs that will uplift anyone who listens.
“The entire EP is honest and true. Every verse and chorus is based on some part of my life.
“I decided to celebrate my long journey in the industry by making a conscious decision to be happy and to learn from past mistakes. My lyrics reflect that,” she said.
On the sound, Naidoo revealed: “It goes from Afro-beats to Afro-pop, to mid-tempo tracks flavoured with underlying African sounds. This was not deliberate, I just wrote the songs as I felt them.”
The first single off the EP, “Feel Good”, is an Afro-beats-rooted track co-written by Ghanaian producer and artist, GuiltyBeatz, London- based Zimbabwean artist Donel Mangena & Johnson.
Talking about the significance of the lyrics, Naidoo said: “This song is about me, in every way.
“Sometimes when you’re down you got to envision your happiness as if you are already in that space.
“This song is about me giving praise in advance for all the blessings I am going to receive. To own one’s Queendom and feel good about it unapologetically.”
Speaking on why she named it courage, the star said it is was indicative of the courage she has had to muster to forget her fears and get back into music.
“Unlike most artists, I haven't had that moment of 'wow I did it’ and because of this, I felt defeated most of the time.
“I turned 40 last year and went through a brief moment of reflection because I was now too old to try to chase a fading dream.
“My family encouraged me not to give up and my daughter reminded me that not all fairytales have easy beginnings.
“So with all the fear I had harvested inside me, I decided to face each one and this EP became my revival.
“With each song, my strength and confidence started growing. It took a lot of courage for me to do this and hence I titled,” she said.
Like many artists who have released new work during the Covid-19 pandemic, having people being in different parts of the world was a massive challenge for Naidoo.
“I wished so many times that I could be in the same space as the producers, especially when we were writing the songs.
“When it was time to record the vocals, we had to follow serious Covid regulations and that was hard cos I can’t sing with a mask on but Greg Abrahams was amazing and kept the studio safe for us and we finished the EP with no incident,” Naidoo said.
While Naidoo notes that this EP is as good as any of the other songs or albums she has worked on in the past, there is one difference.
“The only difference is I feel present in it. I wrote from an honest place but more because I allowed everyone around me to see my brokenness and this allowed me to be present without shame.”
The singer said that she hoped that listeners could learn to love themselves even when they failed or didn’t achieve the goals they set out for themselves when they listened to “Courage”.
“I hope that my music inspires everyone to never give up but to keep trying and also I hope this EP makes you dance.
“I love every song on this EP but I have to say, every single time Colours comes on I kinda lose myself.
“I literally want to jump up and get into the car, fetch my sisters and drive to the beach,” she said.
“Courage” is available on all digital platforms.