Tanzania’s Latest Music Gem: Meet Mimi Mars

Having launched her music career in 2017, in front of the scrutiny of music fans and media in Tanzania, Mimi Mars, who comes from a musical family, knew too well that she would have to work hard to stand strong. Two years later and Mimi’s hit tracks such as “Kodoo”, “Shuga” and “Papara” have found a firm place in the Bongo music scene, with their success leading to her debut on “Coke Studio Africa 2019”.

Her Big Coke Studio Debut

Representing Tanzania, Mimi will feature on the show’s Big Break segment, which spotlights fast rising stars from different countries. She says: “Being called up for Coke Studio, yet I have been in the music industry for only two years, means that I must be doing something right—this is a moment I will cherish for the rest of my life. I am so excited to be on Coke Studio though it’s sinking in slowly.”

While at Coke Studio, Mimi will get to meet and work with a cross section of artists including King Saha (Uganda) and Yared Negu (Ethiopia). Their music fusions will be produced by Ugandan talent Daddy Andre.

Should we expect another Mdee Collabo?

Mimi Mars is signed on to Mdee Music Label, which is owned by one of her elder sisters — the East African pop queen who graced the Coke Studio Africa 2016 season, Vanessa Mdee. Her other sister Nancy Hebron (formerly known as Namtero Mdee) is also a gospel singer. Mimi has followed closely in the footsteps of her sisters whom she credits with guiding her in the music scene: “I have learnt a lot from Vanessa by watching closely what she does as well as learning from her wins and mistakes from the past. Both her and Nancy are really supportive.” In the past, the three sisters collaborated on a song “Beautiful Jesus” and Mimi confirms the trio is already thinking of their next collaboration.

You should maintain your originality

Mimi’s Coke Studio feature is set to propel her dream and vision to become known among more music fans across the continent. She says: “Music is an international language and I think we should push more on Swahili music across Africa. I believe in being original. It’s also nice to see how other artists run music in their countries. So far, I have had the pleasure of learning new and different cultures. I have picked tips from each artist I have brushed shoulders with, and I hope to incorporate it in my music career.”

Transitioning from media to music

The multi-talented artist also doubles up as a TV host and YouTube personality. Finding a perfect balance is never easy, but Mimi is impressively growing a steady brand into a mainstream status. She says: “I really didn’t switch off from one career; I adopted something I always wanted to do. At that point, it was the perfect moment to juggle between other careers and music, which I enjoy.”

Her 2018 debut 6-track EP: The Road, has received critical acclaim at home.