THIS isn’t your typical fairy-tale with a hopeful promise of a "forever after", but the story of a young woman poised and destined by song to be one of the next big talents to come out of Africa. Maleh (Malehloka Mary Hlalele) began her musical journey in the heart of the majestic mountain kingdom of Lesotho where she was born and raised.
The songstress' professional singing career took off during her final high school year, when she joined Afro pop group Kaya, which released its debut album ‘Kunzima’, winning the Metro Fm best newcomer award in 2005. She later parted from the group to further her studies at a film college in Johannesburg, where she majored in Cinematography.
After graduating, Maleh began working for events production companies as a freelance coordinator for some major music festivals. Having dedicated a few years to discovering the realities of the music world from behind the scenes, it would not be long till the stage would call the songbird back.
She says about working backstage at one of South Africa’s most prominent jazz festivals (Standard Bank Joy of Jazz) “I was most inspired by artists like Chriss Botti and Lalah Hathaway that night, and I knew that getting back on the stage and reviving my singing career was what I needed to do if I was going to find purpose in my life”
After deciding to forsake the corporate environment, this talent was very soon to be heard, back on the airwaves with hit collaborations including Dj Qness - ‘Uzongilinda’ & ‘Time’, Dj Ganyani - ‘Not so Far" and the international hit with Dj Kent - " Falling". In a search to find her own identity Maleh has spent time working on a sound that would be the authentic representation of her true spirit.