The award-winning South African musician Jabulani Hadebe, known as Sjava, on why he would choose money over pleasure. 1. What sets your music apart? I always try to make it different. I think most of the time when people create music, they create it according to what is ‘hot’ and what is ‘popping’; they never really talk about things nobody talks about… So I just always try to sit in my corner and stay true to it. 2. What specific qualities do you need in order to last in the music industry? I think talent and discipline, in terms of respecting what you do, and being dedicated towards it. You also need luck and a lot of people don’t believe in that. They believe that you create your luck, but I really believe in luck. 3. In the future, do you see yourself as a more of businessman or a musician? Music is my first love and I have been doing it professionally since my first album came out in 2016, however, since then, I have seen and learned a lot of things. There have also been many business opportunities and lessons on how to use money correctly. Branching into business is my new hobby right now; it has become my obsession. 4. Why do you think it took you longer to find success in the music industry? Time. I really believe that God’s timing is the best, and I thank God every day that it took forever because I don’t think my music would be what it is today. I talk about my experiences, and how I view things. I don’t think if I made it 10 years ago, I would have been the same person, and I don’t regret it. 5. What is your philosophy in life? What keeps me going is not really caring about what people think of me. I also take things as they come. I am not the kind of person who says, ‘I see myself, in five years, achieving this and that…’ I just take it one step at a time. Because what if I say, ‘in two years, I want to achieve this’, and it doesn’t happen, only to find that it is going to happen in the third year? That would mean I have already been mentally defeated. 6. What did winning the BET Awards Viewer’s Choice for Best International Act mean to you? It was crazy. It felt like they were still rehearsing… I didn’t believe it was real at the time, but it is what it is. I also didn’t think I would win, because of how expensive data is in South Africa as compared to other countries on the continent from where artists were also nominated. I really thought my people wouldn’t have the resources to help me win. They surprised me and I won, that is why whenever I see a group of people, I get out of the car, so I can take a picture with the award, because they helped me get it. 7. What is more important: money or pleasure? I would definitely choose money. As black people, we have been made to believe that money is not everything and it cannot buy you love and it can’t bring you happiness, and that is not true. We need to teach people to like money, and that it is not a curse. I come from poverty, so I know what I’m talking about. Where I am now, and looking back to where I come from, my life is better. I might not be as happy as I was then, but my life is better. So I wouldn’t choose the happy broke life I had. I would rather choose where I am now, so I can take better care of my family.