Born in Nhlangano, Swaziland, Aphelele Gule, better known as Apple Gule to his loyal fanbase, reaching various genres including house and soul pop and is an industry staple within his chosen genres, having performed at well-known festivals such at Oppikoppi and Rocking The Daisies. Sitting down with Kyla to discuss the happenings in his personal life from childhood to current; family and his perspective on his own music and everything he’s working on.
Having grown up in a small town in Swaziland, with a big dream to make music, Gule dropped out of varsity to pursue a music career, having been signed by music label Soul Candi Gule’s music is popular with the House and R&B fans of South-Africa.
When asked about family, Apple responds: “I am in, like a whole transition period. What I mean is that, like, yeah, you know, I’m learning that music is obviously one of the most important things to me. But I think what’s more important is being a good person. That’s why I like I think I’ve been taking more time to figure out, you know, family dynamics to make sure I know who my friends are and those kind of things, which I think when the music thing is all, you know, dead and buried, those people are going to be there forever.”
While music is his passion and very obviously his calling in life, in this period of his life, he’s taking the time to forge relationships, realizing that there’s a lot more to life than just music and in the time he’s been home he has been able to reflect on that,
Gule talks about his home-town as a big source of his inspiration for his music.
Being away from the busy city life, away from the fast-paced living, having to go a 100 kilometers per hour, he says “when you back home and you’re just chilling and you’re breathing some good air and you actually, like have no one always on you for deadline, no 100%, you then can just sit down and be like, what’s important?”
With nothing but open air, surrounded by nature, being able to wake up and be around animals is what brings Apple Gule peace. Being around family at the family-home, in the beautiful village nestled away in the mountains of Piggs Peak.
With that peace of mind and worries melted away, Apple Gule really gets the chance to sit down in his home studio, to focus on his songwriting and make clear the messages he wishes to put into his music.
Apple Gule also tells us about his song-writing process with other artists. Being a part of the music business, emphasizing the business aspect of his career, Apple reveals one of his ventures as a song-writing, for not just himself but many other artists. But it’s not solely for a paycheck Gule points out,
“ I still believe in the art. I still believe in the creativity and the and I guess the integrity and the message of music.’
He starts off the writing process much like a conversation, sitting down, getting to know the artist he’s writing for, putting emphasis on really understanding their mindset and getting to know their story. Gule believes that’s the most important part about writing for other people, to make sure he’s writing from their perspective. Which often means being open and vulnerable, much like a therapy session, but Gule stresses that putting that vulnerability and putting it into music and helping others with it, is “much more worth it”.
Gule wants fans to understand how much goes into the whole song-making process, though while everyone else only sees the results of their efforts, in the form of a three minute song, it can take, sometimes 3 weeks or even several months to create.
“And I want people to understand that so when we give you our passion, give you our love. Hopefully you give it back to us.”
It’s no secret that artists often spend long hours on the road, traveling and performing, having to do shows back to back, day after day and it’s also no surprise to anyone that it can become quite exhausting for most artists.
Being asked what keeps Apple motivated considering all of this, Apple Gule answers that it’s the fans, the people that come to his gigs to support him. He says when he gets up on stage and introduces himself, the moment the crowd roars in reply. To him it’s like he’s alive again, “it’s crazy, how like, the power of psychology is.”
We’ve embarked on a journey that goes past just the music and gained insight into what goes on behind the artist we know as Apple Gule, having shared his inspiration, his creative process and his motivations.
Keep a lookout for Apple Gule this coming 2024 for more exciting projects from him!