Kenya’s ‘First Lady of Hip-hop’ Nazizi Hirji has opened up about losing her brother Ferouz Hirji. Speaking exclusively to #WordWithSDE, the award-winning singer narrated how her brother believed in her.
“You know Ferouz was one of those people who would always come in like, ‘you need to do another song. We are going to the studio today, we don’t care if you don’t feel it, you’re going to do it. ‘
“And so, he used to push me. He used to believe in my music, even maybe more than I did,” she said.
Ferouz lost his life through a tragic road accident in December 2006. And since then, as Nazizi explains, his death to her was like losing her everything.
“When he passed, it was not just about losing a brother. It was about losing my everything. I was not even motivated to go the studio to record music anymore because I didn’t have the same feedback, the same support, when I used to go to the shows it was not the same anymore. So a lot of my music reminded me of him when I went to the studio,” she continued.
Nazizi however, says that she had to kick herself out of it and keep recording new music because that is what her brother would have loved.
Getting over his death
“I had to kick myself out of it because, you know, Ferouz wouldn’t want me to just sit around and not do music because he is not there. He would actually want me to push harder and even more. And so I have to sometime remember those things about him. Until today I remember when I have something to decide on, I always have to go back and think what would Ferouz’s advise be? He was younger than me but he knew so much,” she recalled.
Marriage and Divorce
When news broke that Nazizi had divorced her husband of five years Vini Leopold, everyone was shocked. Most of her fans had regarded her marriage as one to emulate. However, it came to an end and everyone wanted to know why.
According to Nazizi, she had the perfect and amazing marriage.
“I tell people that I had an amazing marriage and they wonder why then did it end. What happened,” she says.
“You see, one thing I would have wanted to know before is that things happen in life that you can never ever expect. There’s nothing more I could have gone into marriage without knowing. Because I knew him very well, we have been friends for a long time so I was mentally prepared and I was ready to settle down with him,” she narrated
“You never know what the future holds and the challenges that are going to come. What I can tell someone going through divorce is that sometimes the divorce is about a mutual decision about growing as an individual and not about a failed marriage.”