It all started when Theo Thomson’s mum heard him singing in his bedroom. She thought it was Stevie Wonder on the radio and came running in - she had no idea her son could sing like that.

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Even though Theo was an introvert as a teenager, his mum persuaded him to enter singing competitions in the UK where they were living at the time. Eventually, he overcame his nerves and got a taste for the stage.

He even auditioned for, and joined, a boy band which had a brief moment of fame when it was featured on British TV.

"I learnt a lot from that actually. I learnt how to share the stage and how to own your section of the performance," Theo says.

But it was a few years later when Theo returned home to Malawi that things really took off for him:

"That was when I connected with my sound, my African sound. My first single there was a song called So Amazing. That had a mixture of what was happening in the States, my writing was very UK and the energy was very Afro. This song was in the charts for 25 weeks.

"I wasn’t sure if I was going to be accepted doing this fusion in a territory that was kind of virgin to this urban-meets-Afro genre. But when it did get received the way it did, it was an amazing experience honestly. It made me feel like ok let’s go, we can push this.”

Theo now has three albums under his belt.

His biggest song to date – Maybe Tomorrow – riffs on the idea of a young man stalling his girlfriend who wants him to propose marriage. But it’s not a player thing, Theo assures us - it’s because the young man wants things to be perfect before he gets hitched.

Thomson says he owes a lot to his parents, and not just to his mother, who spotted his talent and pushed him. His father, Oscar Thomson was a nightclub DJ and went on to set up Malawi’s first independent radio station FM 101 Power.

"He loves music so much," Theo says. "I’d say he’s very responsible for everything that’s happening in Malawian music right now because he was the first one to give Malawian listeners Malawian music. He has an amazing ear. Whenever I finish a song, he’s the gatekeeper."