If you’re looking to get into the Ugandan music scene and need a beautiful face and amazing video to entice you then this is it: click on Mys Natty’s Youtube video at left featuring her latest collaboration with Atlas and Gasuza. ‘Crash and Burn’ will have you hooked.
With so much talent it’s easy to assume that Mys Natty was always a musician but she insists that it wasn’t always so. At school, while she loved the top ten chart hits, she showed no aptitude for music and the only musical person in her family was her father who played guitar but was killed under the Amin regime before she could get to know him. She went on to have a career as a barrister and have two children before rediscovering her love for music with King Cash (Alexander Guma) who helped recruit other band members that would form the Majestiks. These include Marsha (lead vocalist), Joshua (keyboards), Jimmy Hasla (on trumpet), Steve (bass guitar) and Davis (lead guitar).
Their first big break came when Lotus Mexicana welcomed them to play their first gig and since then the band’s style has broadened to encompass jazz, reggae, blues and pop. Inspiration comes to Mys Natty from a variety of other artists including Bob Dylan, Coldplay, Nina Simone and Black Eyed Peas. “I love the roots,” she says. “And just discovered the Brooklyn Funk Essentials. There are too many sources of inspiration but Aretha Franklin will always cheer me up and Burning Spear always reminds me of the importance of roots and culture.”
Mys Natty believes that the Ugandan music industry is flourishing especially with Juliana Kanyamozi taking the Kora Award last October for best East African Female Artist being the first Ugandan to do so. It has also grown and expanded with musicians like, Chinobe and Maurice Kirya getting out on the world music circuit and Radio and Weasel, P Squared on the afro-beat circuit. Mys Natty says that Lillian Mbabazi is the one to look out for!
Mys Natty confesses that she can’t hear Chaka Khan’s, ‘I’m Every Woman’ without wanting to get up and dance and if she could play anywhere in the world it would be at the Woman Festival and then Glastonbury. When asked what song she has on her media player that she keeps secret she says, “Well it’s not on my player but I watched a silly movie called, ‘Rock of Ages’ and found myself jumping around playing air guitar to Guns and Roses, ‘Paradise City.”
While she’s currently taking a well-deserved break from performing she says that when she does perform on stage she thinks about how lucky she is and to be doing what she loves. Her family provides incredibly support given the amount of time that she has to commit when rehearsing, performing and recording. And, when she’s not on stage she’s working as a professional development coach, mother of three and avid yoga devotee.
What’s the best advice she’s ever been given? “What other people think of you is none of your business”. And while she might not make it any of her business she need not worry as her music speaks for itself and her quickly growing fan base thinks she’s great.
Want to know more? Check out Bushfire Records Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bushfire-Records/19866044077 and while Mys Natty might be taking a break you can still catch the Majestiks on Wednesday nights at the Sheraton Hotel downtown.
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