About Amanda Black
With her confident, soulful voice and messages of equality and empowerment, South African singer/songwriter Amanda Black broke out in 2016 with the viral hit single "Amazulu" and the platinum-selling album of the same name. She became known for wearing stipples of Xhosa face paint and further celebrates her ethnic heritage by singing in both Xhosa and the English language. After signing with Sony Records, Black released her sophomore album, Power, in 2019.
Born in the Eastern Cape town of Mthatha and raised further south in Butterworth, Amanda Benedicta Antony grew up singing in church and school, later taking her musical pursuits to a higher level by competing in talent contests. After high school in Port Elizabeth, she studied Music Education at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University and went on to compete in several seasons of Idols, the South African talent competition based on England's Pop Idol. Using her stage name, Amanda Black, she became an audience favorite during the 2015 season and was one of the final seven contestants on the show.
In the year that followed, she moved to Johannesburg and landed a record contract with Ambitiouz Entertainment who released her debut single "Amazulu." A defiant Afro-soul song with a strong melody, it became a viral success and helped her debut album, also called Amazulu, achieve platinum status. Channeling the influence of her R&B idols like Beyonce and Whitney Houston, Black also honored her Xhosa heritage, writing several songs in the native dialect and proudly wearing the small stipples of Xhosa face paint both on-stage and in photo shoots. Thanks to Amazulu's success, she was nominated for several South African Music Awards and her 2018 follow-up single, "Kahle," fared similarly well. Black signed a major-label deal with Sony in early 2019 and released the single "Thandwa Ndim." Later that year, Sony issued her second full-length, Power. ~ Timothy Monger