back to top
Simphiwe Dana

About

Simphiwe Dana is a talented Xhosa singer and songwriter. Known for her unique combination of different styles including jazz, Afro-soul and traditional music, she has even been hailed as the new Miriam Makeba. This is Simphiwe Dana’s biography.

Personal Life

Simphiwe Dana was born on 23 January 1980 in Butterworth, Eastern Cape but was raised in Lusikisiki. She comes from a family with a strong religious background. Her father was a pastor and due to his devotion to the church, Simphiwe got exposed to gospel songs. Simphiwe Dana’s late mother was a retired nurse. She passed on in 2021 after contracting coronavirus whilst also battling diabetes. 

Schooling

Simphiwe Dana attended Vela Private School. She then graduated from the Wits Technikon Johannesburg with a national diploma in IT

Career

Simphiwe Dana’s love for music began when she was young thanks to the exposure she got from church. She credits her mother and siblings for inspiring her to get into music. The theme of Simphiwe’s music is largely borrowed from her childhood days in Transkei. 

Her professional music career started in 2002 when she performed in clubs in Johannesburg. Two years later, Simphiwe Dana worked on her first album, 'Zandsile', which won her multiple awards. She was named the Best Newcomer and Best Jazz Vocal Album at the South African Music Awards in 2005. This album was so good that after it was released internationally, it got enlisted on the Billboard Charts

Since then, Simphiwe Dana has dropped hit songs and albums that have led to her being likened to the legendary Miriam Makeba. Her songs, which are sung in her traditional Xhosa language, fall into the jazz, afro-soul genre. The combination of her vocal strength together with the instruments gives a traditional, modern feel to her songs. Consequently, Simphiwe Dana has a cross-generational fanbase.

Simphiwe has explored various themes with her music from political, social issues to her personal experiences.

Some of her most loved songs include ‘Ndirede’, 'Zandsile’, 'Nzinga', ‘Bantu Bile Streets’, and ‘Troubled Soldier’. 

So far, Simphiwe Dana’s discography includes five studio albums. Her most recent is ‘Bamako’ released in 2020 and produced by Salif Keita and is named after the capital city of his country Mali. It carries thirteen tracks. Before this, Simphiwe Dana released ‘Zandsile’ her first album, ‘Bantu Biko’, ‘Kulture Noir’, and ‘Firebrand’

In between, Simphiwe Dana won several awards. For her song “The One Love Movement on Bantu Biko Streets’ she won the Best Female Artist at the South African Music Awards. Her other accolades include Best Contemporary Jazz and Best Female after the release of ‘Kulture Noir’.

Due to her talent, Simphiwe Dana has headlined several events like the CapeTown International Jazz Festival, Koroga Festival in Kenya and the Standard Bank Joy in Jazz.

In 2020, just before she released ‘Bamako’, Simphiwe Dana shocked fans when she announced that she would be stepping away from the stage. The songstress attributed this to the fact that music is not a financially sustainable endeavour and as a single mother, she needed to diversify her brand. 

“I am seriously considering it. It’s just… sometimes finance wise this career is not just sustainable. The instability gives me anxiety because I am a single mother and because I give 120%, that means I don’t have as much time to take on other works or diversify. I am working on a concept that could potentially give me more financial stability.”

Relationships

Simphiwe Dana took to Twitter in 2020 and announced she is gay. She also made it known that opera singer is her partner. A few months after the announcement was made, Simphiwe Dana got engaged to Pumeza. She also made it clear that they will get married but details about their wedding have not been revealed.

Before coming out, Simphiwe Dana dated Leshoto Itsweng. The two have been on each other’s throats and are caught in a legal battle. Simphiwe alleged that Leshoto abused her and is seeking justice while Leshoto also claims that she also physically assaulted him.  According to her, Leshoto strangled her, spat on her face, threatened to slit her throat and warned her against going to the police.  

Leshoto went on to file counter-charges of defamation against Simphiwe, a move that angered the musician. She questioned the legal justice system and why they allow persons accused of abuse for filing counter-charges. Simphiwe presented herself to the Norwood Police Station where she was detained.

Simphiwe Dana's husband

Simphiwe Dana does not have a husband. Her dating history only points to her relationship with Leshoto Itsweng, her ex-fiancee. As for marriage, Simphiwe Dana disclosed that she would marry her partner Pumeza Matishika.

Family

Simphiwe Dana has two children and raises them alone. Simphiwe claims that her baby daddy left after she stopped financing him. She also said that her car accident which left scars on her face contributed to the end of their relationship. 

However, Simphiwe Dana announced on Twitter that the father of her children resurfaced ten years after he walked out on them. Her children were delighted to see him and so was Simphiwe. In what seemed like a move to mend bridges, Simphiwe said that she forgave him and was ready to open a new chapter with him. 

Controversy

Men are liars

Simphiwe Dana has made her feelings known on matters concerning men. On separate occasions, she’s termed them as gold diggers and liars. This after the father of his children walked out on her when she stopped financing him. And when he made his return, she said that she hoped he would keep his promise of seeing his children. Mzansi did not take her description kindly as some opined that she needed to be more specific about the man she was referring to. 

On President Cyril Ramaphosa

This time, Simphiwe Dana had a dig at president Cyril Ramaphosa. According to the singer, Ramaphosa is the “worst president SA has had. She ignited a debate about the country’s leadership. As expected, a section of Mzansi agreed with Simphiwe whilst others pointed to her silence during Jacob Zuma’s controversial reign.

Did she bag the cash?

After her tweet on President Cyril Ramaphosa, Simphiwe Dana found herself being investigated for unsavoury business dealings. The musician reportedly received a grant of R500,000 from the National Lotteries Commission in a record two weeks. Some linked the investigations to her comments about Ramaphosa while others opined that it was a mere coincidence. 

Car 

Fans came to Simphiwe Dana’s rescue after she announced on Twitter that her car was stolen by an employee at PanelBeaters, an auto dealers company. She put up pictures of individuals she suspected had stolen the car on social media. Later on, Simphiwe’s Chevrolet was found abandoned. She thanked her social media followers for helping out in the search as she said that the thieves might have been scared after her post got traction on social media. 

Net Worth

Despite her wanting to quit music due to its financial instability, Simphiwe Dana has made good money from her illustrious career. Simphiwe Dana’s net worth is estimated to be $1 - $5 million. 

Awards & Recognition

2018: Best African Artist at the South African Music Awards 

2007: Album of the Year, Female Artist of the Year at the South African Music Awards

2005: Newcomer of the Year at the South African Music Awards

Social Media 

Simphiwe Dana Instagram: @SimphiweDana 

Simphiwe Dana Twitter: @SimphiweDana

Simphiwe Dana Facebook: Simphiwe Dana

Q&A

Who is Simphiwe Dana?

Simphiwe Dana is an award-winning singer and songwriter, celebrated for her jazz, afro-soul, traditional blend of music.

Is Simphiwe Dana gay?

Yes. Simphiwe Dana came out in 2020 and confirmed she is gay. Her partner is an opera singer called Pumeza Matishika.  

How old is Simphiwe Dana?

Born on 23 January 1980, Simphiwe Dana’s age is 42

How many children does Simphiwe Dana have?

Simphiwe Dana is a single mother to two children. The father of her children took off after she stopped financing him but resurfaced after ten years. Even so, Simphiwe says she has no problem raising her kids by herself.

Birthday:
23 January 1980
Nationality:
South African
Star sign:
Aquarius
Birth place:
Butterworth, Eastern Cape, South Africa

Related Celebs

Itumeleng Khune
87 Stories
Genius "Ginimbi" Kadungure
19 Stories
DJ Zinhle
406 Stories
Denise Zimba
40 Stories
Simphiwe Dana
Birthday:
23 January 1980
Nationality:
South African
Star sign:
Aquarius
Birth place:
Butterworth, Eastern Cape, South Africa

About

Simphiwe Dana is a talented Xhosa singer and songwriter. Known for her unique combination of different styles including jazz, Afro-soul and traditional music, she has even been hailed as the new Miriam Makeba. This is Simphiwe Dana’s biography.

Personal Life

Simphiwe Dana was born on 23 January 1980 in Butterworth, Eastern Cape but was raised in Lusikisiki. She comes from a family with a strong religious background. Her father was a pastor and due to his devotion to the church, Simphiwe got exposed to gospel songs. Simphiwe Dana’s late mother was a retired nurse. She passed on in 2021 after contracting coronavirus whilst also battling diabetes. 

Schooling

Simphiwe Dana attended Vela Private School. She then graduated from the Wits Technikon Johannesburg with a national diploma in IT

Career

Simphiwe Dana’s love for music began when she was young thanks to the exposure she got from church. She credits her mother and siblings for inspiring her to get into music. The theme of Simphiwe’s music is largely borrowed from her childhood days in Transkei. 

Her professional music career started in 2002 when she performed in clubs in Johannesburg. Two years later, Simphiwe Dana worked on her first album, 'Zandsile', which won her multiple awards. She was named the Best Newcomer and Best Jazz Vocal Album at the South African Music Awards in 2005. This album was so good that after it was released internationally, it got enlisted on the Billboard Charts

Since then, Simphiwe Dana has dropped hit songs and albums that have led to her being likened to the legendary Miriam Makeba. Her songs, which are sung in her traditional Xhosa language, fall into the jazz, afro-soul genre. The combination of her vocal strength together with the instruments gives a traditional, modern feel to her songs. Consequently, Simphiwe Dana has a cross-generational fanbase.

Simphiwe has explored various themes with her music from political, social issues to her personal experiences.

Some of her most loved songs include ‘Ndirede’, 'Zandsile’, 'Nzinga', ‘Bantu Bile Streets’, and ‘Troubled Soldier’. 

So far, Simphiwe Dana’s discography includes five studio albums. Her most recent is ‘Bamako’ released in 2020 and produced by Salif Keita and is named after the capital city of his country Mali. It carries thirteen tracks. Before this, Simphiwe Dana released ‘Zandsile’ her first album, ‘Bantu Biko’, ‘Kulture Noir’, and ‘Firebrand’

In between, Simphiwe Dana won several awards. For her song “The One Love Movement on Bantu Biko Streets’ she won the Best Female Artist at the South African Music Awards. Her other accolades include Best Contemporary Jazz and Best Female after the release of ‘Kulture Noir’.

Due to her talent, Simphiwe Dana has headlined several events like the CapeTown International Jazz Festival, Koroga Festival in Kenya and the Standard Bank Joy in Jazz.

In 2020, just before she released ‘Bamako’, Simphiwe Dana shocked fans when she announced that she would be stepping away from the stage. The songstress attributed this to the fact that music is not a financially sustainable endeavour and as a single mother, she needed to diversify her brand. 

“I am seriously considering it. It’s just… sometimes finance wise this career is not just sustainable. The instability gives me anxiety because I am a single mother and because I give 120%, that means I don’t have as much time to take on other works or diversify. I am working on a concept that could potentially give me more financial stability.”

Relationships

Simphiwe Dana took to Twitter in 2020 and announced she is gay. She also made it known that opera singer is her partner. A few months after the announcement was made, Simphiwe Dana got engaged to Pumeza. She also made it clear that they will get married but details about their wedding have not been revealed.

Before coming out, Simphiwe Dana dated Leshoto Itsweng. The two have been on each other’s throats and are caught in a legal battle. Simphiwe alleged that Leshoto abused her and is seeking justice while Leshoto also claims that she also physically assaulted him.  According to her, Leshoto strangled her, spat on her face, threatened to slit her throat and warned her against going to the police.  

Leshoto went on to file counter-charges of defamation against Simphiwe, a move that angered the musician. She questioned the legal justice system and why they allow persons accused of abuse for filing counter-charges. Simphiwe presented herself to the Norwood Police Station where she was detained.

Simphiwe Dana's husband

Simphiwe Dana does not have a husband. Her dating history only points to her relationship with Leshoto Itsweng, her ex-fiancee. As for marriage, Simphiwe Dana disclosed that she would marry her partner Pumeza Matishika.

Family

Simphiwe Dana has two children and raises them alone. Simphiwe claims that her baby daddy left after she stopped financing him. She also said that her car accident which left scars on her face contributed to the end of their relationship. 

However, Simphiwe Dana announced on Twitter that the father of her children resurfaced ten years after he walked out on them. Her children were delighted to see him and so was Simphiwe. In what seemed like a move to mend bridges, Simphiwe said that she forgave him and was ready to open a new chapter with him. 

Controversy

Men are liars

Simphiwe Dana has made her feelings known on matters concerning men. On separate occasions, she’s termed them as gold diggers and liars. This after the father of his children walked out on her when she stopped financing him. And when he made his return, she said that she hoped he would keep his promise of seeing his children. Mzansi did not take her description kindly as some opined that she needed to be more specific about the man she was referring to. 

On President Cyril Ramaphosa

This time, Simphiwe Dana had a dig at president Cyril Ramaphosa. According to the singer, Ramaphosa is the “worst president SA has had. She ignited a debate about the country’s leadership. As expected, a section of Mzansi agreed with Simphiwe whilst others pointed to her silence during Jacob Zuma’s controversial reign.

Did she bag the cash?

After her tweet on President Cyril Ramaphosa, Simphiwe Dana found herself being investigated for unsavoury business dealings. The musician reportedly received a grant of R500,000 from the National Lotteries Commission in a record two weeks. Some linked the investigations to her comments about Ramaphosa while others opined that it was a mere coincidence. 

Car 

Fans came to Simphiwe Dana’s rescue after she announced on Twitter that her car was stolen by an employee at PanelBeaters, an auto dealers company. She put up pictures of individuals she suspected had stolen the car on social media. Later on, Simphiwe’s Chevrolet was found abandoned. She thanked her social media followers for helping out in the search as she said that the thieves might have been scared after her post got traction on social media. 

Net Worth

Despite her wanting to quit music due to its financial instability, Simphiwe Dana has made good money from her illustrious career. Simphiwe Dana’s net worth is estimated to be $1 - $5 million. 

Awards & Recognition

2018: Best African Artist at the South African Music Awards 

2007: Album of the Year, Female Artist of the Year at the South African Music Awards

2005: Newcomer of the Year at the South African Music Awards

Social Media 

Simphiwe Dana Instagram: @SimphiweDana 

Simphiwe Dana Twitter: @SimphiweDana

Simphiwe Dana Facebook: Simphiwe Dana

Q&A

Who is Simphiwe Dana?

Simphiwe Dana is an award-winning singer and songwriter, celebrated for her jazz, afro-soul, traditional blend of music.

Is Simphiwe Dana gay?

Yes. Simphiwe Dana came out in 2020 and confirmed she is gay. Her partner is an opera singer called Pumeza Matishika.  

How old is Simphiwe Dana?

Born on 23 January 1980, Simphiwe Dana’s age is 42

How many children does Simphiwe Dana have?

Simphiwe Dana is a single mother to two children. The father of her children took off after she stopped financing him but resurfaced after ten years. Even so, Simphiwe says she has no problem raising her kids by herself.