Kambua believes again
Award-winning gospel artiste Kambua Manundu went through a terrible heartbreak that almost shattered her life. She opens up to KIUNDU WAWERU about her pain and how she learnt to love again
Your new song, Umetenda Mema, hints at a grateful, happy Kambua despite there being people who think that your exit from TV was not a happy one.
Oh, I left the TV show on a good note. But first about Umetenda Mema. You see, many times when The gorgeous Kambua has every reason to sing again. [PHOTO: MARTIN MUKANGU/COURTESY]
we pray, we just ask God to do this or that for us. We never give thanks or appreciate that we are here, alive, which alone is a blessing.
The gorgeous Kambua has every reason to sing again. [PHOTO: MARTIN MUKANGU/COURTESY]
It seems much thought and time went into the song and the video.
For the song, I did it in a day but the video took two months. I think this is good because it has come at the end of the year and we have much to thank God for.
Umetenda Mema sounds different from your other songs.
Ummh...Umetenda Mema is jazzy, while my other songs are a mixture of everything (laughs) though I love Kwaito.
You are glowing with joy, what’s been happening in your life?
Musically two collabos, Saluti, with Daddy Owen and Holiday with Jimmie Gait did well. Also, at the end of February, I released Again, which was also received well.
The song Again has a deep message. What inspired it?
Again was about my story, a long story…
Well, take your time…
About two and a half years ago, wait it has been this long! I went through a broken relationship. I was shattered and everything, including my associations had to change. You see, when you are in a relationship for a long time, you see the same people, visit the same places.
It came a time when I started wondering where my life was headed. I had just come from Canada for studies and I even thought of going back for a Masters degree.
One day, while sipping coffee at a cafÈ, I had these words play again and again in my head, "you can believe again; you can start again".
I decided to make the words into a song — a song for me. I called producer Bosire and the song came to life.
After the single was out, I was surprised to receive feedback from many people who had been touched by it and I realised I was not the only one going through a tough phase.
Is that the time you got an opportunity to do a TV show?
Yes. Around that time, I learnt about auditions for a new TV gospel show. I had never been on TV before but I decided to give it a try. During the auditions, I felt nervous especially when I realised I was competing with veterans. I was surprised when I got the chance.
I gained lots of experience and had fun hosting the show. I enjoyed being on TV.
You left the silver screen too soon. What was the motivation?
If you watched the last show, you can see from the wonderful send off I got, it was in good faith.
As I said, I enjoyed being on live TV, but I felt that it was becoming a routine for me; I was getting restless. Though it was a hard decision, I had to quit.
After the heartbreak did you love again?
Let’s just say I am in a relationship (laughs).
Someone we know?
I am not telling!
But you could at least tell how you met.
You really don’t give up. Let me see. It is someone I have known for sometime. We had been meeting in ministry circles. That’s all!
Fair enough. But early this year, a local magazine wrote that you were walking down the aisle.
Rumour mongers. It’s clearly after April and I am still not married. Anyway, I guess we need such people, they keep us entertained.
Now you have the chance to put the record straight, when…
I am not telling!
Your skin is flawless share the secret?
First of all, I love myself and this sees me take care of myself. The tragedy with most people and especially women, is that they are not comfortable in their own skin and some strive to imitate people they see on TV or magazines.
We need to thank God for creating us the way we are and then try to maintain what we have.
Do you get secret admirers; get stalked?
Oh yes. A pal once told me that the day you choose the microphone, you lose your private life. I am an introvert and I try to keep my life and family from the limelight.
Who is Kambua when not doing music or when no one is watching?
I listen to music; any kind depending with the content. Locally I like Jemimah Thiong’o, Mercy Masika and internationally, Jill Scott and Angelique Kidjo.
I also read a lot. My best book this year would be Princess by Jean P Sasson. It is a real life story about life behind the veil, featuring a Saudi Arabian princess. It shows how the Arab woman is downtrodden by the man, and it highlights how the Kenyan woman is lucky that I could sit here with you freely.
Currently, I am reading The Lady, Her Lover, and Her Lord.
However, music is my life, the core of everything that I do.
So, what should your fans expect from you in the coming year?
I will release an album early next year and I am also in a group of musicians, Ngoma Moja, which will be using the power of music to create awareness on cancer.
They have asked me to be the ambassador. Our message is simple; let’s change our lifestyle that is putting people at the risk of lifestyle diseases.
How do you plan to spend your Christmas?
On Christmas Day, I will spend time with my family at home as we always do. It is a typical Kenyan thing at our home with lots of laughter and food.
For the New Year, I will be performing with K-Krew’s TSO (Totally Sold Out) concert.
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