Elisa Lisete James Humbane, popularly known as Lizha James (born December 12, 1982), is one of the biggest musicians in Lusophone Africa. Born in the capital of Mozambique, Maputo her music style includes a mixture of rhythms like Marrabenta, Reggae, R&B and hip-hop. She is also famous for the Mozambican style Dzukuta Pandza.
Early life and career
Daughter of Jaime James Humbane and Madalena Fernando, she started to sing as part of the Methodist Church, Igreja Metodista Unida. According to her father, Elisa is her aunt name who used to sing as well, and Lizha is a short name for Elisa since when young she was short. According to her mother, Lizha was never a problematic girl, always directed to studies and religious. By the age of 14, Lizha joins one of the most famous house music groups in Mozambique - Electro base. However her career gains a boost only when she started to perform solo, launching her first album in 2000 - Watching you. Two years later she started to work as a print model for companies like Coca Cola, Sabco; Mcel; King Pie, etc.
Rainha do Ragga
In 2005, Lizha releases her second album a major success - Rainha do Ragga (Queen of Reggae) - that includes hits like "4 all ya". In 2006, with the video clip for this song Lizha is awarded with the Channel O Music Video Award for Best Female Video. She was nominated in 6 categories.
Sentimentos de Mulher
This is the third album released by Lizha James and features more of Lizha's James musical growth with a blend of mixes of Marrabenta and Ragga. Most popular singles off the album include songs like "Lutas entre Familias" and "Aniguiri" which display brilliant mixing of different genres of music hence defining Mozambican popular music genre. In 2007 she is again awarded with the Channel O Music Video Award for best video in the category R&B, and Afro Music Channel Grammy for best song with the song "Nuna wa Mina" (My husband). In 2008 she is again awarded with a Channel O Music Video Award for best female video, for the song "Nita Mukuma Kwini" ("Where are we going?")."Nita mukuma kwini" ( where will I find him/her)
During this period, Lizha made diverse partnerships with South African singers like Mandoza, Loyiso and Kabelo. In 2009, she was awarded with the Best Artist of Southern Africa for the song "Estilo xakhale". The song was a collaboration with South African artists Loyiso and Kabelo.
In 2010, she recorded a song with the Brazilian singer Alcione, "És Meu" ("You are mine") for the Part II of her album Sentimentos de Mulher. For the same album, she recorded her version for the acclaimed mozambican song "Totte", remixing the jazz sounds of Jimmy Dludlu.
Bang Entertainment is the entertainment and label company founded by her boyfriend Bang, that promotes Mozambicans musics and helps to organize events in the country.
The label used to have many of the most famous Mozambican artists like, Valdomiro Jose, Dama do Bling, Ziqo, Denny OG and Marlenn. Together with these artists Lizha performed a various number of songs like "Amigo e quem ajuda" (Friend is the one who helps) and Sekelekane.
Marriage and current events
In 2010, Lizha James finally got engaged and married her long term boyfriend and music producer - Bang. Her wedding counted with the presence of famous African artists like Anselmo Ralph, Gilberto Mendes, among others. Her wedding dress was designed by the Mozambican stylist Taibo. After this Lizha gave birth to a girl. During the pregnancy time Lizha reduced her appearances, however she kept active in the music world.
In 2011, Lizha launches "Nandi We" a song that speaks about domestic violence, and in same year "Stop Trafico" financed by the Embassy of USA in Mozambique and talks about the children traffic and gives awareness to the people about this real problem in Mozambique as well in the world. Some people however find that this was a very heavy video clip.
Recently Lizha launched her new single "Gotta Move On", a song that is mixture of Pandza, Kwaito, House and Dancehall. According to Lizha: "The song talks about a person who is not sure where they stand but feels that they have to move on regardless. The beat takes over the person and the more they dance, the more their self-esteem grows. That is why we didn’t put a character in the video as there is no history, only feelings"
Awards and prizes
- 2005 - Prize TVZINE for Best Singer (Mozambique)
- 2006 Channel O Music Video Awards - Best Female Video (4 all ya)
- 2007 Channel O Music Video Awards - Best R&B Video (Nuna Wa Mina)
- 2007 Afro Music Channel Awards - Best African Song (Nuna Wa Mina)
- 2008 Channel O Music Video Awards - Best Female Video (Nita Mukuma Kwini)
- 2009 Channel O Music Video Awards - Best Southern African (Estilo Xakhale)
- 2012 Channel O Music Video Awards - Best Female Video ("Leva Boy" featuring Perola)
- 2014 MTV Africa Music Awards - Best Lusophone
- 2014 African Muzik Magazine Awards - Best Female Southern Africa
- "Mafikizolo, Uhuru, Davido lead nominations for MTV Africa Music Awards". Sowetan LIVE. Retrieved 2014-04-17.
- "See Nominees for the African Muzik Magazine Awards (AFRIMMA) 2014". Bellanaija. 9 June 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2014.