Kampala, Uganda | AGNES E NANTABA | Solome Basuuta is commonly known as the `queen of love’. It is all she sings about. She also calls her music the ‘love genre’. Her debut album was titled `The Song Love’ and features a poem and her hit song `Nz’ani’.
“My music reminds people that they are loved and deserve to be loved because love is universal and everyone has an aspect of love,” she says, “It’s one thing that touches people’s lives and it has affected me as well so it’s very close to my heart.”
Basuuta is a singer/songwriter and performing artist of soul music with a bluesy or Jazzy feel. She is also a lady of colour and flowers and, for most of her performances, appears with flowers tucked in her natural hair or sometimes locks. Her performances are usually lit and filled with a fusion of traditional African talking drums which form the base around which a body of other western musical instruments compose. She sings with energy and a big voice that belies her not so big physic. It is a package accentuated with colors to make any audience yearn for more.
She says she picked colour and the art from her mother who is a visual artist and teacher.
“I grew up in a very vibrant home,” she says, “My mother used to sing in choir and always appreciated art but I never saw myself end up as a musician.”
Basuuta is the last born of five children of Prof. Mugambe and his wife, Lydia.
Basuuta believed she was more like her father whose life revolved around science and math. But at Gayaza High School where she had her ordinary level, Basuuta was introduced to choral and classical music which she says laid a foundation for her music. While at the girls’ only school, Basuuta was also introduced to acting which was reinforced at Makerere College School where she had her advanced level of school.
“I was always in the space of dancing, singing and acting,” she recalls.
She studied a computer science degree at Makerere University Kampala and on graduation joined the central bank of Uganda in the IT department. She stayed for eight years.
She joined an a cappella group called Talitha and in 2008 was a back-up singer for renowned crooner Maurice Kirya, and in 2010 joined Pragmoja Band as the lead singer. She wrote and released her first song called ‘Dance’ in 2013. In 2015 she held her first sold out concert and embarked on a solo career the same year.
“After my concert, doors started opening and I did events like blankets and wines, comedy meets music, Quella junction and many more,” she says.
In 2016, Basuuta released ‘can we stay’ which she co-wrote with two others. Her most recent song is titled ‘Ndeete’.
Taking on a musical career meant leaving professional work and her family did not like that. It meant moving to an industry full of uncertainties.
“My parents questioned my choice but I had made up my mind to focus fully on music,” says Basuuta. And even when several years after, the move hasn’t paid off, she is optimistic about the future. She has just held her second musical concert.
“I kind of knew what I was going into although I didn’t know how hard it would be,” she says.
“I wouldn’t trade where I am for anything and so I don’t regret the decision,” she adds.