Amanda Black Biography
Amanda Black is a celebrated South African singer and songwriter renowned for her soulful voice and captivating music. Her journey from a small town in the Eastern Cape to becoming a musical sensation has been nothing short of remarkable.
Amanda Benedicta Antony
Amanda Black Early Life and Education
Born on 24 July 1993 in Mthatha, Eastern Cape, South Africa, Amanda Benedicta Antony, who proudly identifies as Xhosa, spent her formative years in Butterworth, Eastern Cape, with a brief stay in East London. Later, she moved to Port Elizabeth, where she completed her high school education at Kabega Christian School. Amanda’s passion for music led her to Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, where she pursued a degree in Music Education.
Amanda Black’s musical journey began at a young age when she showcased her vocal talents at church and school. By age 12, she had already started participating in talent competitions, providing her with valuable stage experience that would shape her future.
Idols SA and Breakthrough
A pivotal moment in her career arrived when she participated in the South African talent show Idols SA. She competed in three editions of Idols SA. However, in Season 11 of the talent show, she captured the hearts of fans, securing her place in the top 7. This pivotal moment marked the beginning of her professional music career.
In January 2016, Amanda Black made a significant move, relocating to Johannesburg to pursue her music career. This decision would prove life-changing when she was approached by Ambitiouz Entertainment, a notable South African record label, with an offer of a recording contract.
Debut Single and Album
On 1 July 2016, Amanda Black released her first official single, “Amazulu“, which would later become a standout track on her debut studio album of the same name. The song’s mesmerizing appeal was reflected in its success, accumulating over 4 million views on YouTube On November 11, 2016, Amanda Black unveiled her highly anticipated debut album through Ambitiouz Entertainment titled “Amazulu.” The album not only achieved commercial success but also garnered positive critical acclaim.
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Platinum Certification and Award Nominations
In less than a month following its release, “Amazulu” had sold over 31,000 copies, earning platinum certification from the Recording Industry of South Africa. The album’s success led to multiple award nominations, including recognition at the 16th edition of the Metro FM Music Awards and the 2017 South African Music Awards. Additionally, Amanda received a nomination for Viewers Choice: Best International Act at the 2017 BET Awards.
Amanda Black Collaborations and Recognition
Amanda Black continued to shine in her career, with hits like “Kahle,” released on July 20, 2018, accumulating over a million views on YouTube. She also made headlines for her collaboration with Anthony Hamilton and her signing with Sony Music Entertainment in January 2019.
In 2020, Amanda Black collaborated with fellow artist Berita on the single “Siyathandana,” featured on the album “Songs in the Key of Love.” Her album “Power” earned the prestigious title of Best Album of the Year at the South African Afro Music Awards (Saafma)
In 2021, Amanda continued to captivate audiences with her music. She released “Kutheni Na,” featuring Kwesta, as the second single from her album. On 2 July 2021, her third single, “Let It Go,“ was introduced to her growing fan base. Her third studio album, “Mnyama,” was unveiled on 6 August 2021, solidifying her place as a prominent figure in the South African music scene.
Musical Style and Influence
Amanda Black’s music transcends genres, incorporating elements of Afro-soul, hip-hop, soul, and R&B. Her distinctive style and soul-stirring vocals have earned her a dedicated following.
Signature Facial Art: Embracing Identity
Amanda Black proudly embraces her Xhosa heritage, often adorning her face with intricate Xhosa facial art, known as “umchokozo.” This unique expression of cultural pride and identity has become integral to her public image. In her own words,
“It’s about me living the way I understand my culture to be. It’s a way of representing my roots and where I am from.”
Embracing Self and Culture
Amanda’s journey to self-acceptance and cultural pride has been transformative. Growing up, she faced insecurities due to societal beauty standards that favoured lighter skin. Her quest for self-discovery and self-love led her to reconnect with her Xhosa heritage, ultimately influencing her music and her art.