Kampala, Uganda | AGNES E NANTABA | Shifah Musisi is a fashion designer, singer, guitarist, and songwriter with an eye for the unique and unusual. Her music genre; afro-soul, is a fusion of contemporary, RnB. To create her unique sound, she does her afro-soul with a fusion of African instruments like addungu (arched harp), akogo (thumb piano), drums and more which she mixes into her music. Her latest song ‘Ebilowozo’ in which she sings about longing for true love is quite big.
In fashion, she concentrates on urban African fused together under Marisha designs. And she has big dreams.
“I refer to myself as a world artiste because I want to be a world star,” she says.
The budding artist says her musical gift was spotted by her parents who encouraged her to learn musical instruments like the guitar alongside singing. Her father was a song writer. She was also encouraged by her best friend at the time, a pianist.
Even at school, she studied music and excelled. But it during her long senior six holiday that Musisi began her professional music journey. Her father, who has since passed on, paid for the studio session to record a song that she had written for her sister and spouse reflecting how true love comes from a far. It was publicly unveiled on their wedding in 2011. This was followed by two tough years of attempting to win audience acceptance and recognition.
“My kind of genre was a bit new to the music audience but I had to keep in there,” says Musisi.
She has since written all her music selection with over 12 songs on two albums.
After the first album Musisi went ahead to work on her second album that is still running.
About the same time she embarked on music professionally, Musisi also joined Records Fashion School to better her fashion and design skills. One year into school, she opened her first fashion shop. Still, music remains her passion.
“Music has surprised me and although it might take long to yield, you just need to keep doing what you do and perfect it,” she says, “People love good work and when you have it, they will come to you”.
She says it is inspired by real life experiences and the environment. She says she spent her early years of life in Kapeeka- Luweero district which she says had beautiful scenery and playing in the neighborhood was her favourite pastime.
“My mother sent us all to the village to get an experience of the village life and we would only visit her in Kampala,” she says.
Musisi is a middle child in a polygamous family. She attended Kampala Nursery School, Greenhill Academy, Kibuli Secondary School and Mulama Secondary School back in the village.
Musisi says she is excited to be part of Uganda’s music industry at this time because “everyone is growing creatively as opposed to before where almost every musician was treading along the same line”.