Irene Namatovu: The Queen of Ugandan Traditional Music
Irene Namatovu is a Ugandan musician, recording and performing artist who specializes in traditional and cultural music. She was born in 1983 in Kyebe, Kyotera District, and raised in a family of eight children. She started singing at a young age and joined the Da Nu Eagles band in 2004, where she met her husband Geoffrey Lutaaya, also a singer and songwriter.
Namatovu is known for her distinctive voice and style, which blend elements of folk, pop and dance music. She sings in Luganda, the language of the Baganda people, and other local languages. Some of her popular songs include Tweyanze, African Woman, Yansamariza, Kuzala Kujagana and Nsambila Nyuma Nga Janzi. She has also collaborated with other artists such as Eddy Kenzo, Bebe Cool and Jose Chameleone.
Namatovu has won several awards and accolades for her music, including the Best Female Artist at the HiPipo Music Awards in 2018 and 2019, the Best Folk/Pop Artist at the Uganda Music Awards in 2017, and the Best Traditional Artist at the Zzina Awards in 2016. She has also performed at various local and international events, such as the Bayimba International Festival of the Arts, the Nyege Nyege Festival, the Afrima Awards and the One Africa Music Fest.
Namatovu is not only a talented musician but also a philanthropist and a role model. She supports various causes such as education, health and women empowerment. She runs a foundation called Irene Namatovu Foundation, which provides scholarships and mentorship to young girls from rural areas. She is also an ambassador for Save the Children Uganda, a global organization that works to protect and improve the lives of children.
Namatovu is one of the most influential and respected female artists in Uganda and beyond. She has inspired many young musicians to embrace their culture and identity through music. She continues to create and perform music that celebrates the beauty and diversity of Uganda.
In 2021, Namatovu released a new romantic song titled Zaabike, which means “I will die for you” in Luganda. The song is a tribute to her husband, whom she praises for his love and support. The song has a catchy melody and a danceable beat, and showcases Namatovu’s vocal range and versatility. The video for the song, directed by Saint Jude Nyanja, features Namatovu and her husband in various romantic scenes, such as riding a bicycle, walking on the beach and dancing in the rain.
Namatovu’s fans have received the song with enthusiasm and appreciation, as it reflects her genuine emotions and passion. The song has also attracted attention from other musicians and celebrities, who have praised Namatovu for her talent and creativity. The song is available on various online platforms, such as YouTube, iTunes, Spotify and Amazon.
Namatovu has also revealed that she is working on more songs and projects, which she plans to release soon. She has hinted that some of her songs will feature collaborations with other artists, both local and international. She has also expressed her desire to perform live for her fans once the Covid-19 pandemic is over.
Namatovu is undoubtedly one of the most prolific and consistent artists in Uganda, who never fails to deliver quality music that appeals to a wide audience. She is a true representation of Ugandan culture and music, and a source of inspiration for many aspiring musicians.