Bongekile Simelane, better known as Babes Wodumo, is turning 27 years old this Monday, 26 July. The popular musician, dubbed the Gqom Queen, has worked hard to be where she is today, especially when one looks at her journey to success.
The first lady of West Ink records was not born with a silver spoon in her mouth. The stunner had to use her dancing skills to hussle her way out of Lamontville - a township south of Durban. She put her talent to good use despite her naysayers claiming she'll not succeed in life because of the way she lives.
In celebration of the Wololo hitmaker's birthday, Briefly News takes a look at her journey out of the hood, business moves and her love life.
Big break in the entertainment industry
The stunner was part of a group of video vixens who were chosen to be part of Big Nuz' music video for Hawaii some years ago. The star told Drum magazine that everyone who was on set loved her dance moves and that's when she developed a good friendship with Mampintsha.
From then, she used to visit the West Ink studio. Babes' love for the studio began during that time. She has recorded a number of hits at the same studio.
After her voice featured on Sir Bubzin's single Desha featuring Big NUZ and DJ Tira, Babes dropped her breakthrough single Wololo in 2016. Wololo became an instant hit and ruled dance floors across Mzansi. The song was on high rotation on TV and radio stations.
The epic tune was a lead single to her debut album released later that year, Qgom Queen. Babes has never looked back following the success of the album. Just recently, the star dropped another massive hit titled eLamonti. Even US superstar Alicia Keys loved the track. The singer posted a video of herself and her family jamming to eLamonti.
Getting married to Kwaito musician and West Ink partner Mampintsha
The choreographer and her boo tied the knot on 25 April. Their traditional wedding trended on social media. Celebs and guests at the ceremony shared snaps and videos of they took during the wedding of the two Gqom stars. Many people took to social media to congratulate them as many negative stories had been written about them leading up to the wedding.
Some of the guests and the wedding were DJ Tira and his wife Gugu, Ngizwe Mchunu, DJ Bongz and other Gqom musos from Durban.
Giving birth to Spontshi Wodumo
Babes and her hubby welcomed their first child together in June. She took to social media on 16 June to officially announce the birth of their son nicknamed 'Spontshi Wodumo'. The eLamonti hitmaker posted snaps of her and Mampintsha’s baby while they were still in hospital. She captioned her post:
"Unkulunkulu emuhle njalo. Our beautiful blessing is finally here, inhlanhla yethu.!! #spontshi usefikile."
Babes' mother-in-law had claimed that she was faking her pregnancy. Zama Gumede hilariously alleged that Babes was using a 'sponge' to make her belly appear bigger.
Babes and Mampintsha's reality TV show 'Uthando Lodumo' debuts
Babes Wodumo and Mampintsha's reality TV show Uthando Lodumo hit Mzansi screens at the end of June. The series showcases Mpintsho's proposal to Babes live on Gagasi FM, a regional radio station based in KwaZulu-Natal.
Mampintsha went down on one knee in October, 2020. The programme also show the lobola negotiations between the two artists' families and Babes' pregnancy journey, among other things.
Babes Wodumo and her mother-in-law fight over Mampintsha
In other entertainment news, Briefly News reported that Babes Wodumo and her mother-in-law made headlines on Wednesday morning when they both fought over Mampintsha. According to Mampintsha’s mother, Zama Gumede, Babes’ family are not good for her son and they excluded her from everything.
In a rant caught on video, Gumede slammed Babes and the Simelanes. She also went as far as accusing Babes Wodumo of faking her pregnancy. Babes threatened to take Mampintsha’s mother to court.
Speaking to the Daily News at the time, Babes said that she was pregnant whether the woman liked it or not. She went on to say that she usually ignored her drunken ramblings but that time, Gumede had pushed the muso too far. Babes wanted to press charges in order to clear her name. She also blasted the elderly woman for apparently arriving drunk at her wedding.
“She arrived for the wedding drunk and made demands..."
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