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The best kept secret in music


"CD Review - Riaan Wolmarans"

She's Got it

She’s young, she’s a babe and the booklet of her debut CD, Got to Have It, folds out into a sexy mini poster. She sings upbeat R&B pop. Jerusha Naidoo could easily have been just another clone from the overproduced Christina Aguilera mould, another young South African starlet desperately trying to make it on to the charts. But look closer, urges Riaan Wolmarans

CD of the week:
CD OF THE WEEK: Jerusha Naidoo: Got to have it

She’s young, she’s a babe and the booklet of her debut CD, Got to Have It (Universal), folds out into a sexy mini poster. She sings upbeat R&B pop.

Jerusha Naidoo could easily have been just another clone from the overproduced Christina Aguilera mould, another young South African starlet desperately trying to make it on to the charts.

But then one looks closer: she’s a medical doctor and, as it turns out, a skilled songwriter responsible for most of the lyrics and music on Got to Have It. The catchy Are U the One? is the track that earned her a place on the air waves, but there is plenty more of its vibrant sound on the album, such as opener Got to Have It, the dirty groove of Dance and the retro-squawk-rap of Electro Boogie (both of these with Syd Money).

Some of the slower tracks, such as Look in My Eyes and U Be, are a tad nondescript, but Jerusha does have a knack for adding an ear-cathing snatch of melody to save the moment when her earnest delivery isn’t enough to save the ballad. On Tum Ho she even sings in Hindi.

Also included — inevitably, considering the single’s dance-chart success — is the Mama’s House Mix of Are U the One?, all speeded up and stretched to six minutes, unfortunately with some cheesy Eighties stutter effects.

Though Got to Have It probably won’t win a Grammy, Jerusha has certainly taken her first welcome steps on the road to fame.
- Mail&Guardian

"Juggling Jerusha"


The latest icon of loveLife’s Get Attitude Campaign is BORN FREE role model, pop star and medical doctor Jerusha Naidoo. CASSANDRA GUDLHUZA asked this 24-year-old about her formula to success.

Cassandra: How do you keep a balance between your medical career and your musical career?

Jerusha: Keeping a balance is very difficult. It takes careful planning and time management. Sometimes I wish I just had one profession I could commit all my energy to, but it didn’t work out that way for me… and besides, I like having two major interests, as I never get bored of either. Having two very different careers tends to highlight the benefits of each, because I inevitably end up comparing them. It’s important to realise that they can only be done one at a time. When I’m a doctor, I focus on my job and make sure I’m rested before I go on duty. When I record or perform my music, I also give my all.

C: A medical doctor with an interest in music…did this raise some eyebrows?

J: I don’t think it’s that unlikely. Everybody remembers Dr Alban, who was both a dentist and a musician, so I don’t think it’s impossible. Come to think of it, they are both professions that heal people, medicine physically and music spiritually. Also, a lot of my colleagues in medical school were classical musicians.

C: How do you approach life on a daily basis?

J: I know it sounds like a cliché, but “living life to the fullest” works. We have so much potential and life is such a gift with so many great experiences, some good, others bad. We experience so many emotions, and really feel alive. We also have the gift of creation, and live our lives creating our destiny, whether it is in work, art, music, sport or something as primal as having children. We have the greatest gift and should nottake it for granted.

C: Have you always had it easy in life?

J: As an adolescent I used to overdo things like drinking and partying. Everybody goes through those phases. Luckily for me I was usually surrounded by good friends who actually took care of me and “had my back”. In retrospect, I regret some of my risky behaviour and the dangerous situations I put myself in.

C: What’s your advice to young people who feel the need to conform and be “one of the crowd”?

J: Life is a journey of self-realisation. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. Listen to your inner voice and be proud of who you are.

C: How do you feel about being in loveLife’s latest PSA?

J: I must say that I’m quite flattered and honoured for being considered a role model for anybody - let alone our nation’s youth! I hope I can live up to everyone’s expectation and make South Africa proud.

C: What are your plans for the future?

J: I want to release my second album early next year as an international release, and I know I can do it. I want to see a level of success in music that puts South Africa on the map in the global pop culture. I’d also like to go back to university and study and eventually specialise in paediatrics or internal medicine, but before I do all that, I’d like to get married and start a family and have two fabulous kids.

C: What is your motto in life?

J: If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again. The people who make it are the ones who don’t give up!

C: Finally, what’s your attitude?

J: I’ve always been a go-getter; my attitude to life is never to put limitations on myself and my abilities. I understand the gifts and skills that I have and think it’s important not to let them wither but to nurture them so I may share them with others and enjoy the journey of self-realisation. At the same time, I think it’s very important to remain humble in life, and that actually comes with knowing your inner strengths: I call it “quiet” confidence.

- Scampto Print

"Soul Medicine"

Soul Medicine

Meet Jerusha Naidoo, a rising South African pop star - with a medical degree. I kid you not: this hot babe is a doctor. She's a sex kitten in her bellybutton-bearing top and skin-tight leather pants, but don't mistake her for an airhead.

How many times have we been promised "beauty with brains" as a new celebrity is thrust upon us - only to have our hopes dashed as soon as she opens her perfectly made-up lips and drivel pours out?

As Jerusha, 24, walks into my office in her backless top and hip-hugging jeans, everyone turns to stare. But she's getting used to the attention now that she has released her first single, Are U the One?

So, what's it like having two drastically opposite careers? "They're both demanding and I focus all my energy on just those two things, with a bit of a social life in between," she says.

"I'm a doctor during the week and on weekends I focus on my music. Fortunately I live in Cape Town, where my record label [Mama Dance] is situated, so I can go to the studio after work or in the afternoons."

Jerusha's big break came last year when she made it to the top 100 contestants in SABC3's Coca-Cola Popstars. "Popstars was a great opportunity for me - I wanted to get noticed and that has happened," she confesses.

Her debut single has gained major exposure in a short space of time and has even made it onto the UK charts.

Born in Durban, Jerusha attended high school in the US, where she developed a taste for R&B, hip-hop and pop.

"In the US everything is done in excess, so I felt more peer pressure there than I did in South Africa. Thank goodness we have school uniforms in South Africa. Over there everything is about competition and being popular, so it was very hard for me to adjust to their lifestyle."

Jerusha is doing her community service year, after which she might open a private practice. But, she says, music is her first passion.

"Music makes me whole. It makes me better. If it becomes very demanding and the opportunities are very lucrative, I'll probably put my medical career on hold. The point about having a tertiary degree is that I have something to fall back on. I will always be a doctor, but I might not always be a musician."

Being in the limelight has opened doors for her - one of which is to educate young people about the dangers of unprotected sex, teen pregnancies and HIV/Aids. As a doctor, she feels people might take her advice more seriously.

Jerusha says her focus right now is on music, but adds: " Education is what put me here today and enabled me to record my CD."

- Scampto Print


Are u the one? Single 2003(Universal/MamaDance!)
Got to have it Album 2004(Universal/MamaDance!)
The Night Watchmen (Are u the one?) Compilation 2005 (David Gresham Records)
Feel It Single 2006 (Peermusic/MamaDance!)


Feeling a bit camera shy


Still riding high on the national chart success of her debut album "Got to have it"(Universal/Mama Dance!), gorgeous South African artist Jerusha has arrived in the UK to inject the airwaves with a fresh dose of seductive vocal stylings and infectious grooves. After chart-topping SA singles - 'Are u the one?' and 'For Life' - there's more on the way. Her latest offering 'Feel It' is a sophisticated and funky track. Co-written by Jerusha and Dan Mar-Morinelo (Gareth Gates Sunshine) and produced by Workshy Productions, "Feel It" has a motown meets futuristic funk, which renders the listener hypnotized on the dance floor. Now based in the UK, she has formed a band with Jol Dent on drums, Pawel Kuterba on guitar, Glyn Rowland on keys, and Alex Hermann on bass. Jerusha has begun collaborating with numerous top UK producers and writers including the following: Lisa Greene, Steve Anderson, Steve Lee (Britney Spears 'Breathe on Me'), Rishi Rich (renowned on the UK scene for producing the Jay-Sean album, Rishi Rich Project, Craig David), Tim Laws (Gabrielle and Lighthouse Family), Darren Martyn and Deli Ladimeji (Mel C). Jerusha would love to fuse her love of R&B/Pop with her South African and Indian roots. She has also spread her wings to world-renowned pop production house Murlyn Music based in Stockholm, and is collaborating with Henrik Jonback (Britney 'Toxic' and 'Do sumthin'), Mango (Bloodshy's protegee), Nana and Marten 'Moe' Sakwanda( Jerusha has signed a publishing deal with one of the world's largest independent music publishers peermusic, after being scouted by Kate Thompson, general manager of peermusic in South Africa. Shes also proven to be as hot on stage as on the screen and airwaves. She has co-billed with the likes of Ja-Rule, Kelly Rowlands, Ludacris,Trina, Kindred, Danny K, Jae, Afro Z etc. She was one of two South African Acts chosen by MTV for the roadshow to promote the prestigious Nelson Mandela 46664 Concert in 2004 to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS, a world health issue that is close to her heart. In late 2005, Jerusha performed in London in the SA Solidarity Festival in benefit of the Nelson Mandela Childrens Fund. In May 2006, supported by her band and backing vocalists from the Oxford gospel choir, Jerusha was one of the headline acts at the World Fair Trade Fashion Show held in Oxford; hosted by the Ethical Fashion Forum and UNICEF. Aside from being a talented musician, Jerusha also happens to be a practicing medical doctor. In 2004 she spent three months working as a military doctor in strife-torn Liberia as a member of the United Nations humanitarian effort there. In 2005 she was chosen by Love Life (South Africa's largest HIV/AIDS Awareness Organisation) as a role-model for South Africas youth and featured as an icon in the Get Attitude campaign. Contact: (South Africa) (UK)