20 November 2016

My Story - Tuelo Changu Setume

Photo taken by: Belle Seabo
I grew up in a family of 3 children, being the oldest.  Both my parents are Bakalaka but they never used to speak Sekalaka with us, so odd. My grandmother from my dad's side could not speak an ounce of Setswana but we were so close, so my cousin, Tsompi, was always our interpreter, Imagine her horror.  So one day I asked her to teach me Sekalaka, poor Tsompi agreed. For the whole week that I was in Mapoka, my home village, the poor girl had to go through all the struggle to get me through the lessons, I was 10 at the time. I remember the smile on my granMa's face when I came to her and spoke some bits that I had learnt. This was the day before heading back to Gaborone and the experience taught me a valuable lesson, that when you put your mind to it you can achieve anything. I learnt a language in a week, not all of it, but STILL, I LEARNT.
Growing up, my sister and I LOVED music, I think we got the love from my mom and dad. My dad loved UB40 and Madonna, my mom on the other hand was for Queen and Smokie. This is the type of music we were exposed to at an early age and led to us forming a group with our neighbour and friend, Neo. We called the group NTK (Neo, Tuelo, Kelly), I was 9, Neo was 10 and Kelly was 4 years. Fun times! We composed all sorts of songs that were never released.
I discovered I could rap the very same time I discovered I could act. This was at around the age of 12. I took part in a school play in commemoration of June 16 (day of the African Child) and that’s when the "acting bug" bit me and later went on to take Drama in High School.
My best friend of 24 years, Malebogo, and I used to write poetry and one day her sister read one of my pieces and asked me if I knew that I could turn poetry into rap. Who knew! That was it. From 12 years, I started writing rhymes.
In High school, I would go on to battle guys, SO GUTSY! But I had no choice. I then went on to form a band but later disbanded, I felt demoralised as I never imagined performing or recording without my girls by my side but Pres Beatz thought otherwise.  He advised me to go for it because he believed in me. It took years before I listened but I eventually did. I took his advice and started hitting the studio on my own. I recorded a couple of tracks with Pres but school got in the way. I wanted that Bachelor's Degree in Accounting so bad. So, music took a back seat for a while.
It was until I fell pregnant with my angel Aaliyah Wada, that things took a different turn, I must say, this girl changed my life, she gave me purpose.  For some reason, I wrote A LOT when I was expecting her. The day she was born, I looked into her eyes and I felt like a failure. Thoughts ran through my mind, like “What am I going to say when she asks me why I never gave my passion a try?” I was also getting a lot of questions from people about me pursuing music or acting
Photo by:Dumisani Ncube
I started hitting the studio heavily and released my first track with the only producer who gave me a chance, Bangu. He was and still very patient with me, I will forever be indebted to this man. 
2016 has been so amazing, I’ve releasing two tracks that both made it to the biggest countdown in the country, RB2 top 40, I also Scripted and Directed my debut single’s music video, "FOR YOU" and acting in an amazing piece commemorating the Rwandan Genocide at Maitisong. It has really been a blessing
I made a bucket list and ticked most items off the list, the important one being getting confirmed to the Anglican Church because my relationship with God is everything to me.
I believe that one can do anything and everything they put their mind to. I also believe that one cannot avoid destiny. I tried ignoring my calling but I finally answered and I’m much more at peace. I continue to grow in the industry and as a person too and I would like to see all the items on my bucket list ticked off.
I believe in letting your work speak for you hence I don't like talking about things like future plans. All I can say is, watch this space, the sky is NOT the limit. I am Tuelo Changu Setume also known as Nippy.

Facebook Profile: Tuelo Changu Setume 
Facebook Page: Nippybw 
Twitter: @NippyBW 
Instagram: @nippyBW 

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About Us


A blog by an African Born and bred in Botswana, a peaceful country in the Southern part of Africa. I am somewhere wandering the continent of Asia.