Mlindo the vocalist is keeping it real in his debut album - a departure from the cover versions he started out with.
The 23-year-old says his album titled Emakhaya does not follow any musical rules but is aimed at touching the soul.
“Rules are good but not when it comes to creativity. That is why my creative journey has been one that defies what is acceptable when recording an album; the flow of the songs to the cycle of recording music I just sang from the heart and created magic,” says the vocalist.
Through his album, Mlindo (real name Lindokuhle Mgedezi) takes a journey to his roots in KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape.
“The feeling of the album itself is home. A feeling where you get to forget about all of Jozi’s issues and just be transported back to the feeling of wholeness, a feeling of home.
“To achieve this, I took the advice that I got from Bab’ Vusi Mahlasela in 2009," says Mlindo.
"I remember asking him the secret to making it in the music industry and he pointed out that the problem with us, the kids of today, (is that) our music does not have culture. We sing, but our songs do not reflect where we come from."
The AmaBlesser hitmaker cannot help but laugh at the irony of his chosen path of being on a public platform, despite his shy nature.
“I come from a very musical family. So singing wasn’t such a big deal to us and was nothing glamorous.
"Instead one was always encouraged to forget about music and just get a job like normal people,” he says between giggles.
“But the dream was too urgent within me. I knew what I wanted to do and that was to sing,” he adds.
Mlindo’s album features maskandi music legends such as Shwi Nomtekhala of Ngafa fame.
“These are musicians that I have a lot of respect for and I featured them to honour their influence in my musical journey.
“The first song I produced in 2009 was titled Lengoma, which is also included in the album.
"And all I speak about is my past experience, things that are around me - love and the fun of the world.
“Like I said, I don’t follow much in the way of musical rules and, since this is my first album, I wanted it to be as free and real as ever."
The Sunday Independent