Azawi on her latest Album, playlist and what freedom means to her

Long before she became the famously known Azawi, Priscilla Zawedde was on a steady path to freedom and stardom. The 27 year old songstress got signed into Swangz Avenue, a Ugandan record label and has since released hit after hit.

Today, she is part of the few Ugandan musicians whose Album covers have featured on the New York Times Square. After releasing the Album last year, she went on to win the Best Female Artist of 2021 at Janzi Awards. Her Album “African Music” was named as one of Africa’s best albums on most streaming platforms including Apple Music and has featured on local and international chats and playlists. It’s no wonder that she has been been busy on tour around Uganda and Africa in the last few months.

Thinking back at everything that has happened in the recent past, Azawi counts blessings, “It’s a blessing and a very special time in my life. I thank God every day” she says. Her latest album which was inspired by her African roots attracted global attention, which has put her among the next generation of African musicians and recording artists to watch. When I ask about whether she even saw this coming, she honestly testifies. “I didn’t know, everything is a surprise, I wasn’t certain about a thing.”

As we all know, coming into the lime light is not easy, the sweet spot light comes with a darker side and pressure. Azawi knows that being her self makes people talk, but she makes it clear to me that her devotion is prioritized to upholding her values more than anything else. Her secret is in keeping it real, “I can never be under pressure for being real” she says, adding “and it’s unfair to act like anybody else.” She also tells me that having self control and discipline is fundamental in her line of work, and she holds on to the two like her life depends on it, which explains the kind of success raining on her.

Her success comes from a high level of fearlessness and ability to experiment, its no wonder that as a child she was curious to know about the way things worked, but she was also a bubbly child just like many of us. Her childhood was torn between playing local games with friends and attending school, “but I was also a very very stubborn kid.” she says.

As fans and online critics continue to spur questions, the artist is set on becoming her truest self, which is her definition of freedom. “Freedom is having the liberty to do whatever you want but still maintain discipline and self control” she says, “Freedom is is also about not being selfish” she adds.

When I wonder who could be dominating on her playlist, Azawii says she loves listening to soft and smooth music and goes on to name stars like Summer Walker, “Last days of summer is so far my best body” she says. Adding to that list; Jhene Iko, Sza and sometimes reggae music from Jah cure, Tarrus, Alaine and Etana dominates her play list, among others.

Personal style is another thing Azawi has been boldly free about. As someone in the public eye, people assume that before a lady posts a picture, mascara, lipstick and foundation should all be perfectly painted on the appropriate facial features. But Azawi wears freedom more than anything else, “freedom is having the liberty to do whatever you want but still maintain discipline and self control.” she says. When I ask her to define her sense of style, she says “Not the usual style” and indeed it’s not. Baggy pants, Shorts, Floral shirts, short hair, sneakers, black nail polish, and everything society assumes should never be seen on a female vocal star. Her style is mostly focused on comfort and art, and this non-confirmative nature is very disturbing to people. In a society that wants to focus on women for their beauty and body, rather than talent and abilities, and she gladly defies.

Although she fronts fearlessness, Azawi admits to having fears. “Yes I have fears but I keep optimistic,” she says. But for someone like her, fear can also be a good thing, “Because if it doesn’t scare me, then it’s not worth doing” she says. As I talk to her, I feel the courage to face my own fears, because fear produces courage.

She reminds me of Angélique Kidjo, a unique voice that is not trying to be like any one else, and definitely a unique style that hours her africanacity. Azawi is a rising star who is coming for the big stages, speaking to Caleb Okereke for Okay Africa, “I don’t know how it’s going to happen, but it’s going to happen.” she says.

Take a look at her latest video release “Fwa Fwa Fwa”

Written by ASFA News

ASFAs News Editor- A seasoned writer with a splash of fashion and dramatic expressions. Thank you for sharing your time with me.


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