As a teenager Loyiso Bala was classically trained, finishing top of his class, at the prestigious Drakensburg Boys Choir in South Africa. He later on became the youngest conductor for the National Youth Choir at the age of 19.
This laid the foundation for his solo career and at the end of 2002, where he embarked on a world tour that saw him stopping off in London, America, Asia and the Middle East. Right away his music
solidified his reputation as South Africa’s king of R&B, with singles such as Girl Without A Name and Gimme The Night.
Since then, he has received numerous awards ranging from 5 South African Music Awards – SAMAs, 3 Metro FM Awards, a South African Film and TV Award- SAFTA for Best Musical Score.
Loyiso has performed alongside artists of the highest caliber including Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, John Legend, Brian McKnight, Elton John, Will Smith and Akon but his most memorable performances have been performing for some of the highest dignitaries, such as Nelson Mandela, Richard Branson, Gordon Brown, Bill Clinton, Oprah Winfrey and many more.
A philanthropist at heart, Loyiso is an ambassador for Nelson Mandela’s 46664 brand, the Smile Foundation, MaAfrika Tikkun, Cotlands and the South African Field Band Foundation, which sees him supporting several charitable and worthwhile causes. Most recently he was also appointed the national UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador for the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). In this role he raises awareness around HIV testing and disclosure, reduction of stigma and discrimination towards people living with HIV, and gender inequality, including violence against women and girls.
His partnership with 46664 lead him to put on a stellar performance for an audience of over 46,000 at the Nelson Mandela 46664 concert in Hyde Park, London in July 2008, and at Radio City Hall, New York for Nelson Mandela’s 91st birthday celebration on the 18th of July 2009.
In addition, he was one of the few local artists chosen to perform alongside Alicia Keys, Shakira, the Black Eyed Peas and John Legend at the FIFA World Cup Kick-Off celebration concert, which took place at Soweto’s 30,000-capacity Orlando Stadium on the 10th of June, which was the day before the opening match of the 2010 World Cup.
He also produced and co-wrote Idols Season VI runner up, Lloyd Cele’s debut album One, which won Lloyd his first SAMA for the Best Pop Album category Loyiso his first SAMA nomination for Best Producer at the MTN SAMA18 awards in 2012.
Loyiso is also a member of the trio called Swing City. This idea was borne of the love of swing music from three of South Africa’s most loved artists. Swing City consists of Lonehill Estate’s Nathan Ro, whose love for swing music has always engrossed the pop/ rock singer’s iPod; Graeme Watkins whose background in music and theatre started as a swing singer long before his success on Idols or in his indie rock band “The Graeme Watkins Project”. A full jazz orchestra and band usually back the three-piece singing group, celebrating their love of jazz, swing and blues, but adding a modern day twist to the genre.
However, his main passion is his Christian Music and in 2012 he recorded his much-anticipated live Christian music DVD called Love Complete (released in July 2012). This was something he had wanted to do for quite sometime and said: “It is very different to what one may expect; my main focus is on live performances with my band.” He explains: “Live performances are where I am able to bring everything I love about music together on one great platform”.
He then went on to release a new single ‘Time to Dance’ in March of 2013, which garnered huge success as a crossover track on the airwaves, and was a precursor to his second Christian music project. Power Love Sound, his second live DVD, was released at the end of May 2014.