Themba Mabaso, aka Themba Broly, Big Brother Mzansi’s second runner-up, has been making waves since the release of his latest EP project, Ghost. The Alexandra-born father of two released a three-track self-titled EP featuring Virginia Qwabe, Prince Bulo, and Skye Wanda with the help of award-winning DJ Mthokozisi ” Tira” Khathi. Themba Broly spoke with iStyleBlaq about life after Big Brother Mzansi.
What motivated you to enter for Big Brother Mzansi, and did you have a game plan?
To be honest, I signed up for Big Brother to gain exposure for my tattoo shop and music. The worst part, in my opinion, was having to learn the game and strategies within Big Brother. I went in not knowing what the game was about, having to watch my back and study people, and being kept in the house for three months not knowing what was going on outside. Being away from my family and children, as well as not knowing who voted for me.
I began to understand how the game functioned because I had no idea it was dependent on viewers and votes. So, after learning that the housemates get to vote and nominate, but the viewers make the final decision, I told myself, “you know what, given my weirdness and the fact that I’m just a boy from Ekasi, I probably have about 2000 people voting for me.” I had no idea I had one of the highest votes in the house.
Do you have any regrets about taking part in Big Brother?____________________________
I have no regrets; instead, I am grateful for the show because it gave me a lot of exposure, especially for my tattoo shop and music. Big Brother has had a significant impact on my life because I am now able to do things that I could not do previously. I am currently renovating my tattoo shop in order to expand it, and I also worked with DJ Tira on my latest EP project, Ghost.
Let’s talk about your most recent EP, How did that happen?_____________________________
Music is my first love, and it has always been my dream to release music. Teekay from Goldfish Concierge Lifestyle Productions introduced me to DJ Tira at a function. We started chatting and felt really good. Then Tira approached Teekay and asked if I wanted to go to the studio with him. When Teekay told me, I was overjoyed, and of course I agreed. Dj Tira then flew me to Durban to the afrotainment studios, where we released the EP, which consists of three songs, the hit single being “Uyangifaka,” and these three songs were released in a matter of a day or two.
The response has been incredible, and my ghost nation fans have been amazing in streaming and purchasing the EP. Now we’re planning a tour to promote the EP, amongst other things.
Do you have any issues with people not taking you seriously as an artist and instead seeing you as a reality TV star?
I’m not concerned with what other people think of me, which is why I have tattoos on my face; I’m used to people looking at me funny in malls, thinking I’m demonic, but that’s no longer the case; people now embrace me. I’ve been misunderstood, misjudged, and misidentified as a “skrr skrr”—and I’m not a skrr skrr, I’m a Kasi boy who never went to fancy schools. I grew up in a poor neighborhood in Alexandra known as “TB,” and my dream was to make it in life.
Regarding people not taking me seriously as an artist, I am and have always been passionate about music, and I even sang on Big Brother. One of the reasons I had such a huge fan base was because I would randomly break out into song and sing my own and other people’s songs. So, I’m absolutely confident in my abilities as an artist.
What are your plans for the future, and what can we expect from you?_____________________________
My long-term goal is obviously to have a successful music career and to go global. I also hope that my tattoo shop will expand to become the largest in South Africa, with branches all over the world. I have a lot of plans that I can’t talk about right now, but there are a lot of things coming up after Big Brother. I didn’t win, but I feel like I did because many of the goals I set for myself when I entered Big Brother are now being fulfilled.
Photos by Eyelegance_optometrists & Stillsbytom