the last few years Rebecca has become known as South Africa's
Queen of Gospel. She is dearly loved in her home country and
other parts of Africa. Now her fame is spreading around the
world very fast as people hear her stunning recordings, see
her on video or, better still, live on stage. Rebecca
performs with her band Pure Magic and together they certainly
live up to that name - their music is totally infectious. But,
how did she get to this point?...
Rebecca's early life was by no means easy
as she grew up in a remote part of South Africa where she had
to work on a tobacco farm with her sisters, taking the chance
to sing whenever they could. They didn't have a chance to get
formal education and in 1986 Rebecca set off on a long journey
to Johannesburg with her sister Cynthia, hoping for a better
While in Johannesburg Rebecca took part
in a singing contest but sadly didn't win. Undeterred, Rebecca
persevered until her efforts were rewarded when Sizwe Zakho,
a composer and producer, wrote a song for her and she won the
contest. After singing many love songs Rebecca found that gospel
music was best suited to her strong personal faith in God and
her beautiful voice. She went on to win several awards in South
Africa. Tragiclly, she lost her father, brother and sister in
1996 but resolved to continue singing with great passion. That
year she performed live at the State
in Pretoria in
Rebecca sings many of her own compositions
and her CDs sell by the millions in South Africa. Her discography
includes Free At Last, Siyabonga, Sabel Uyabizwa, The Queen
of Gospel and The Village Pope ( with Tsepo in 2004) and
Christmas with Rebecca and Friends. She is also a guest
on the Congolese gospel singer L'Or Lemba Mbongo's CD Nsimbulu.
Many people are deeply moved by her songs, for example 'Ngiyekeleni'
is really awesome.
Rebecca performed in various places in
Britain in 1997, at the South Bank in London in 2001 then toured
USA. Her second British tour was in July 2002 and this included
a performance at WOMAD Reading.
Rebecca's songs are gospel but with a
difference because of the traditional Zulu influences. She sings
mostly in Zulu and but sometimes in English, for example 'I'll
Bide My Time'. Typically generous, she is always thankful to
her fans for their support and she wants to write and produce
songs for other singers.