Ukhozi FM song of the year winner DJ Hlo on her music, backlash and focusing on the positive


Hlosiwe Mthalane won Song of the Year from Ukhozi FM, beating Osama of Zakes Bantwini

She started her career and a few months later the country shut down due to a pandemic.

But she didn’t give up and when the country reopened she started performing and within a year she had received one of the country’s biggest accolades – song of the year title on Ukhozi FM.

The countdown to the Ukhozi FM Song of the Year is always a matter of pride and contention. The radio station lists the top 10 songs of the year and asks its listeners to vote for their song of the year.

The 2021 roster included hit songs from DJ Maphorisa, Zakes Bantwini, and Kazba De Small, but it was rising star DJ Hlo Isibani who captured the listener’s heart, earning him the title song of the year.

This didn’t please some South Africans, who said they didn’t even know his song.

The backlash has been constant but for 24-year-old Hlosiwe Mthalane, known as DJ Hlo, it’s an encouragement to work even harder.

Speaking to Drum, she shares that the backlash sucks.

“It didn’t make me happy, but it is like that. I am grateful to be surrounded by people who make me proud and make me feel that it is a great achievement and they encourage me to focus on the positive. “

She says that despite the negative comments there are also positive comments and she chooses to focus on that.

Her victory made history and she became the first female DJ to cross during the year on the station.

“I’m happy, I didn’t think I would get such a big step at the start of my career. It’s a great opportunity for me to grow as an artist and learn from other artists as well,” says she.

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Born and raised in KwaZulu Natal, DJ Hlo is a shy industrial psychologist and management graduate from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal, and it’s the music that brings her out of her shell. “I grew up in a musical family where my love for music comes from. I use it to express myself.”

“Growing up, I admired female icons like Lebo Mathosa and Brenda Fassie. I decided to challenge myself and become a DJ, in a very male dominated industry where female DJs are criticized for clothing. that they wear, instead of focusing on their talents, ”shares the DJ.

Besides music and her university life, she is also a businesswoman.

“I own a nail and beauty salon called The Palace. It’s still relatively new and small, but my goal is to expand it,” she says.

DJ Hlo is excited about her great start to the New Year. It made her look forward to seeing what else she can accomplish because when she started her career things weren’t going so well.

She released her first single Ebusuku with Rethabile Khumalo just before the pandemic, but she and her record label Maz Entertainment struggled to put her in the limelight.

“I had a few challenges, I started my music career in 2019 and covid-19 hit. It was a huge step back for my career. My concerts were canceled [just like other artists] but with consistency and hard work, everything went well, ”she says.

DJ Hlo wants to motivate other upcoming female DJs to know that it is possible to thrive in the industry.

“I want to set a good example,” she said. Following the life-changing announcement, DJ Hlo has received more fans and has artists across the country looking for collaborations, but first she wants to focus on her EP.

“I look forward to working with more artists and doing more collaborations, as well as growing as a DJ and learning more. I think the title of being the first female DJ to win the crossover The New Year’s song comes with many opportunities. I see it is a platform to gain more knowledge in the industry. It is an incredible step, “said DJ Hlo.

Here are five things to know about Dj Hlo;

1. She is calm but a lot of fun to be around;

2. She has been an artist from a young age;

3. She used to participate in beauty pageants;

4. She enjoys reading and giving back to the community;

5. She is opening a DJ Hlo foundation.