Tanzanian music isn’t complete without mentioning Zuchu, an afropop artist who conquered East Africa with her mellow voice.
She is a darling in many ways and she has unique history in the Tanzanian music industry. Everyone one wonders how she quickly rose to stardom and dishes out hit after hit years later. But who is Zuchu?
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Who is Zuchu?
Zuchu, born Zuhura Othman Soud, is a Tanzanian singer and songwriter who has captivated audiences with her soulful vocals and captivating stage presence. She was born on November 22, 1995, in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The 29-year-old grew up immersed in the rich musical heritage of her family. Her mother, Khadija Kopa, is a renowned Zanzibari taarab musician, and her father, Othman Soud, was a songwriter for Kopa’s band.
Her musical talents started at a young age singing in church choirs and performing at local events. It is here that she honed her skills and developed her unique style singing style at a young age. Zuchu was inspired by her mother’s musical prowess and singing in church gave her a platform to be as good as her mother.
She found solace in songwriting, pouring her emotions and experiences into her lyrics a as a teenager. But it is her mother’s guidance and support that played a pivotal role in Zuchu’s musical development, encouraging her to pursue her dreams and embrace her talent.
Zuchu Music Career
Zuchu’s early life was marked by a love for music and a desire to express herself through her art. She found her voice as an artist, blending traditional melodies with contemporary influences. Her breakthrough in the music industry came when she signed with WCB Wasafi, one of Tanzania’s most prominent record labels, in 2020.
But it was a result of her patience for four years recording her music during her free time and getting no hit song from any of these songs. She often recounts how hard it was for her to juggle between her daytime job and making music which was the only thing that mattered most. But, when she nearly gave up, her songs gained traction and this inspired her to pursue music full-time and joined Wasafi.
This move catapulted her into the spotlight, and she quickly gained widespread recognition for her exceptional talent. Under the mentorship of Diamond Platnumz, the founder of WCB Wasafi, her career flourished.
In April 2020, Zuchu released her debut EP titled “I Am Zuchu,” which featured a mix of Afrobeat, Bongo Flava, and traditional Tanzanian sounds. The EP received positive reviews and showcased Zuchu’s versatility as an artist. One of the standout tracks, “Wana,” featuring Diamond, became a massive hit and garnered millions of views on various platforms.
Her success continued with subsequent releases, earning her accolades and awards in the East African music scene. Her ability to seamlessly blend contemporary and traditional elements in her music resonated with audiences, contributing to her growing fan base.
Apart from her musical prowess, Zuchu is known for her fashion sense and elegant stage presence. Her performances are a captivating blend of vocal excellence, choreography, and a deep connection with her audience. So good is she that she was named Spotify’s Africa EQUAL ambassador in May 2023.
What Are The Most Popular Songs By Zuchu?
‘Sukari’ is the biggest song yet by Zuchu with 95 million views on YouTube. She released this song in 2021 at the height of Covid-19 pandemic and it took over airwaves in East Africa. This song triggered a dance challenge that transcended Tanzania and Uganda in a big way. There always is a special dance move to each of Zuchu’s song.
Other popular songs include:
- Nyumba Ndogo
Why Did Zuchu Join Wasafi?
Zuchu made history as the inaugural artist under Diamond Platnumz’s record label to introduce an EP featuring seven hit songs. Her trajectory toward greatness was evident, stemming from her rich musical lineage. A consummate performer, she, in an interview with Switch TV, highlighted that the pivotal criterion for artists joining Diamond Platnumz’s record label is their prowess in songwriting—an area where she excels.
During her EP launch, she compellingly demonstrated why she has earned the title of the new queen of Bongo Flava. From her dynamic live band performance and vocal versatility to her commanding stage presence and adept songwriting skills, she left an indelible mark. Each track on her EP weaves a unique narrative, solidifying her position as a standout artist in the Bongo Flava genre.
Zuchu’s rise to stardom has not only solidified her position as one of Tanzania’s leading musical talents but has also established her as an influential figure in the broader African music industry. Her journey from a talented young artist in Zanzibar to an international sensation reflects her dedication, passion, and commitment to her craft.