THE BET AWARD “BEST INTERNATIONAL ACT” WINNER IS FEATURED ON APPLE MUSIC’S AFRICA NOW PLAYLIST
South African soul and r&b singer/songwriter and BET “Best International Act” Winner (2017), Amanda Black releases her highly anticipated third studio album, Mnyama via Sony Music Africa.
The global songstress invites listeners to join her in this open space as she gives a soulful and introspective sonic journey through heartbreak and forgiveness. The album, which reveals Amanda’s multifaceted style, offers a 10-song tracklist and features collaborations with the likes of South African singers Berita and J’Something, long time producer Christer, and South African rapper Kwesta Dakar. This album comes on the heels of a trying year, in which mental health and wellness took a forefront in the midst of a global pandemic. In her most vulnerable project to date, Amanda penned Mnyama, which translates to Black, after dealing with heartbreak, isolation, confusion and self-doubt.
“I have bared my soul for the listener to encourage them and let them know that they will be okay. When I wrote this album, it was the first time where it had nothing to do with proving that I can do it; it was about me and my mental process and ultimately my mental health because I allowed myself to be vulnerable and face the things that I normally would distract myself from. These are the conversations I’ve been having with myself,” exclaims Amanda Black.
Mnyama is now available to stream, download, and purchase worldwide HERE.
The album opens with “Ndandihleli,” a song that bares resemblance to an old Xhosa hymn that she sang growing up. On the track Amanda speaks about longing for her partner, not regretting all the beautiful moments that they shared, but standing firm in her decision to not return to the relationship. On “Amagingxi” Amanda acknowledges that she has no idea how she will get over the pain, but she will continue to persevere over amagingxigingxi (hurdles).
“I urge the listener to not rush the healing process, rather to face it head on and allow it to happen because when we run away from ourselves that’s where the real melancholy is,” states Amanda. On “Ungayeki” Amanda reminds us that “something will change” therefore we should all remain steadfast and keep fighting. “I encourage people to never lose sight of themselves, and if they do, which often happens because this is life, they go back to the beginning to help them see the vision again, to see themselves again.” “Kutheni Na,” the first single off the album speaks of the collective experience as a result of the pandemic and knowing how it feels to experience loss – whether it’s a job, a loved one, home or even just a sense of security.
Often flowing between her native tongue, Xhosa and English, the album takes a lighter note on “Let It Go” as Amanda sings about letting go of pain and negativity she’d been holding onto. In the nostalgic “Ekuphileni,” Amanda sings her grandmother’s favorite tune alongside J. Something. On ‘LWH’ (Love that We Had) Amanda reflects on whether she has truly healed while still grappling with the idea of being alone but wanting her freedom in the captivating tune “Lonely.” but on ‘Lonely’ Amanda grapples with the idea of wanting to be free but not wanting to be alone. She concludes the album with a haunting ballad titled “Away” where she speaks about longing to be home, in the Eastern Cape, where her heart, family and peace are.
“This album is a real representation of how the emotional process works. Self love is a journey and we always expect to get to the final destination quickly, but the final destination is you. You have to be okay with yourself. It’s the biggest part of the journey,” she closes. See full tracklisting below:
- Kutheni Na
- Let It Go
- Pick Yourself Up