The 18-year-old singer/song writer turns heartbreak into soothing love songs in her debut EP. 

With her new EP Sour Milk, releasing on July 2, Johannesburg born and bred musician Joda Kgosi uses music to tell her story.  

Cover for Joda Kgosi’s new EP, Sour Milk Photo: Supplied.

Initially, Kgosi (18) wanted to title her EP Pity Party, however, she felt that Sour Milk resonated with the project better. “I kind of compare love to milk, it was fresh [at first], it was new, it was fun. Then it turned sour,” she says.

The seven track EP, with songs titled How Dare YouEmpty Sinner and Meant To Be, to name a few, explores love, heartbreak, longing, and the hurdles that exist in relationships. Though Kgosi writes from her own experiences, she also draws from those of others. 

“I like to think of myself as a vessel to tell people’s story, sometimes it’s not my own,” she says. Kgosi admits that she tends to be dramatic and exaggerate situations. “Like things just wasn’t that deep, but I made it deep,” she adds.  

Creating Sour Milk was a healing process for Kgosi. “I never write when I’m upset or when I’m sad. It always comes to me after, when I’ve moved on from it,” she explains. She mentions that writing and creating this project felt like a weight had been lifted off her chest. 

Kgosi describes her writing process as spontaneous. Lyrics and ideas come to her randomly, forcing her to stop whatever she is doing and jot the lyrics down. One of these moments happened during her matric final exams. “During my math paper, something came to me, and I needed to write it down. I wrote it on toilet paper, and I was like ‘I need to remember this’”.  

Her urge to write is inspired by different and unrelated things. “It could be a melody, [it] could be someone’s outfit, a smell,” she says. 

Wits Vuvuzela had the opportunity to listen to her first single, I Miss You. Kgosi also played snippets of her songs – Pity Party, Empty Sinner and How Dare You. She delivers a strong vocal performance, playing with different compositions, textures and tempos.  

She sees the EP as R&B-soul. Her sound, she says, is as a combination of different types of R&B. “One song could be acoustic, one song could be super alternative, one song is soulful, one is old R&B” she says. 

On top of her music career, Kgosi is currently studying publishing at the University of Pretoria. Many people anticipated she would study music, but she felt that publishing made better sense for her music career. 

Considering her fans, Kgosi says, “I just want people to know that I put my whole heart in all the songs, my soul-and I leave it in the music because, for me, it’s an escape when I write, and I want it to be an escape for other people when they [are] feeling overwhelmed.” 

FEATURED IMAGE: Joda Kgosi has over 5000 monthly listeners on Spotify. Photo: Supplied.