Qonja

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Qonja
Birth name Tukonjela nee Haihambo Ngodji
Also known as Konz-lela, Mdakadaka, Emwangha
Born (1984-01-30) January 30, 1984 (age 33)
Bucharest, Romania
Origin Khomasdal, Windhoek, Namibia
Genres kwaito, hip hop, gospel, Christian music
Occupation(s) musician, entrepreneur
Years active 2005–present
Labels Lowkey Records,
Associated acts Fredro, BlackSheep Sunny Boy, The Dogg, Mshasho

Tukonjela Haiyambo Ngodji (born January 30, 1984), better known by his stage name as Qonja is a Namibian kwaito star and rapper. He rose to fame following his hit songs 54321 and Koek n Jam which he recorded with his friend Mappz. His work has been admired and praised by Namibia's top kwaito artists such as The Dogg, Gazza and Sunny Boy. His work has also inspired Exit & Mushe and other upcoming musicians. Qonja owns his own record label called Lowkey Records.

Qonja converted to Christianity in 2009.

Early life[edit]

Qonja was born in Romania, Bucharest[1] where his mother and father were studying during the liberation struggle. When he was four years old he went to stay with his father in Luanda, Angola. His family returned to Namibia in 1990 when the country gained independence. Ngodji lived all of his life in Khomasdal with his father, while his mother stayed in Tsumeb. Ngodji schooled at "Gammams Primary" and "Dawid Bezaidenhout Secondary Schools" before enrolling at the Windhoek Vocational Training Center for an Electrical Engineering Fair. After graduating in 2006, he decided to work for his father by managing his construction company.[1]

Music career[edit]

Qonja started his career as an aspiring rapper with his neighbor Mappz. Mappz introduced Qonja to Fredro (a guy who used to make beats on his computer). Fredro then promised to produce for them, and the three formed a team. Qonja recorded 54321 with Mappz in mid-2005 as a duo with production from Fredro (songs were credited as Mappz & Qonja). Following the success of the song, the duo recorded what will become Qonja's break through single Koek n Jam in early 2006. The song became a very big hit helping Qonja establish his record label Lowkey Records. Mappz showed little interest in recording music because of studies, so Qonja went solo (songs they recorded together were credited as Qonja featuring Mappz). Qonja took it from there and completed his solo effort titled after the big hit Koek n Jam. The successful album was released in December 2006. The album earned Qonja a nomination at the Sanlam-NBC Music Awards for "best kwaito".

After the release of the album Qonja took a break from music to finish off his studies in Cape Town, South Africa. At the same time he became a very good friend of The Dogg. He released one single to the radio in 2007 titled "Owela" featuring traditional damara singer Axue, the same year he appeared on The Dogg's critical acclaimed album You Can't Ignore. During his musical hiatus Qonja made friends with more and more musicians in the industry, including Gazza and Sunny Boy. He appeared on Gazza's Still The King album and on Sunny Boy's The Sleeping Giant. The three artists also appeared on his comeback album Mdakadaka. Qonja released his first single for his second album in October 2008 with a number one video. The comeback album was released in December 2008 and claimed a big success.

In 2009 Qonja appeared on The Dogg's This Is My Time. He also collaborated with up-coming kwaito artist Black Sheep of G.M.P. Records. He also worked with Tate Buti and Jericho on a hip hop song for Tate Buti's album Ekiya.

In 2010 he appeared on The Dogg's The Power of 7 on the hit song "Wazup Man", he would later collaborated with The Dogg on an 8-track album titled Lets Celebrate released that same year.[2] The album was released on Christmas Eve 2010.

Qonja was recently featured on albums by D-Naff, Mushe, and The Dogg's The Deception

Currently, Qonja is known as Samwel M'yamba and he has changed his record label from Lowkey to Highkey. In December 2015 he released his fourth album titled Wealthy Governments which costed N$1000, which was a record in the Namibian history. In March 2017, he released his 5th album titled Burj Khalifa.

Discography[edit]

Studio solo[edit]

  • 2006: Koek n Jam
  • 2008: Mdakadaka
  • 2012: Gone Gone Gone
  • 2015: Wealthy Governments
  • 2017: Burj Khalifa

Other albums[edit]