RACHEL MAGOOLA BIOGRAPHY COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: UGANDA HER EARLY YOUTH: Rachel Magoola, born two music teacher parents, started singing at an early age. She joined the school choir at the age of seven and took part in singing activities throughout her youth at school and at the local church. She trained as a music teacher and qualified in 1989. She taught for eleven years at Namasagali College a secondary school and Kaliro Primary teacher training college. Her college choir represented the region several times at the national level music competitions. SINGING CAREER: Rachel Magoola performed professionally with Uganda's top group, The Afrigo Band, from 1989 to 2001 when she started her solo career. She is now a successful artiste in her own right, having produced four solo albums, Inhaife in 1997, Tyenda Wundi in 1998, Tonyiiga in 2000 and Atwibembe 2001.These albums earned her much respect from her fellow artistes and amongst the Ugandan public. One of the tracks on Inhaife, Obangaina, was a smash hit countrywide, and arguably the biggest hit in the history of Ugandan popular music. For example, it was Number One on Capital Radio's Coca-Cola Hot 7 at 7 for 30 consecutive days, a record. The videotapes Inhaife and Vooto were extensively played on UTV, WBS and other TV stations. Rachel hosted radio shows like Kampala's Top Twenty and The Morning Crew shows on Capital radio as well as being the guest on it's Desert Island Discs programme. Other radio appearances include: Radio Simba's Countdown Africa (on which Obangaina was voted Number One); Radio Sanyu's African Express; Star FM's Munakatemba; Dembe FM and BBC's Focus on Africa in March 2003. Magoola has been featured numerous times in local newspapers. In a New Vision poll, she was voted one of the 100 most influential women for 1998-9. She was also voted one of Uganda's top 25 celebrities 2001. RACHEL'S MUSIC AND HEALTH ISSUES Rachel wrote the song ' Take Me As I Am' for the Sickle Cell Association of Uganda (SAU). It focuses on awareness about sickle cell anaemia and a plea to stop discrimination against those who suffer from the disease. The song was first performed at the British Council-hosted launch of SAU in 2002. 'Take Me As I Am' has been greatly appreciated by Emeritus Professor Graham Serjeant, the World's top authority on sickle cell disease. Another of Rachel's hits, 'Bakulimba', was selected as one of the songs on a CD 'Flavours of Sound' compiled by the Commonwealth Secretariat for it's warning messages about underage relationships and related risks among the youth. "I am not a Toy" was written for the girl education movement. "Under the Sand" is Rachel's latest effort at creating awareness about HIV/AIDS and a call for behaviour change among the youth. In May 2005, Rachel wrote and launched "No Smoking" as an anti-smoking campaign song in collaboration with The Environmental Action Network (TEAN). Her first performance of this song was shown on Open Up, Uganda's leading television talk show. "Treat for Life" was written February 2006 in collaboration with the Joint Clinical Research Center (JCRC) and the Ministry of Health to launch and highlight the campaign for the Treat for Life Campaign aimed at sensitising the population on the use of Anti-retroviral Therapy and to enhance adherence among clients. Under this campaign, Rachel was nominated and is now the Ambassador for the campaign. FESTIVAL PERFORMANCES: LONDON AFRICAN MUSIC FESTIVAL, ROYAL FESTIVAL HALL, MAY 2004. CAWLEY ROAD CARNIVAL, OXFORD, JUNE 2004. INTERNATIONAL FOOD FESTIVAL, NEWTOWN WALES, JULY 2004. QUEEN ELIZABETH HALL, SEPTEMBER 2004 THE HORNIMAN AFRICA FEST, HORNIMAN MUSEUM (LONDON), JUNE 2005 THE 365 CARNIVAL, ELTHAM, JUNE 2005 THE REFUGEE WEEK, GREENWICH TOWN HALL, JUNE 2005 UNDER THE STARS FESTIVAL, EASTHAM, AUGUST 2005 THE CHISWICK COMMUNITY ARTS FESTIVAL, CHISWICK HOUSE, SEPTEMBER 2005 BLACK HISTORY MONTH LAUNCH, THE ROBSON THEATRE, OCTOBER 2005 THE CLAUDE DEPPA AND AFRICAN DIVAS PROJECT, HULL AND BOXTED, NOVEMBER 2005 AND JANUARY 2006 PERFORMANCE WITH THE SOUTH AFRICAN GOSPEL SINGERS, QUEEN ELIZABETH HALL, DECEMBER 2005 LAUNCHING OF THE JOINT CLINICAL RESEARCH CENTRE (JCRC) "TREATMENT FOR LIFE CAMPAIGN", KAMPALA, FEBRUARY 2006 THE WOMEN OF KAMPALA CONCERT, THE LONDON AFRICAN MUSIC FESTIVAL.PURCELL ROOM, SOUTH BANK CENTER LONDON. MAY 2006. BLACK HISTORY MONTH CELEBARATIONS, THE PAUL ROBESON THEATER, LONDON. OCTOBER 2006 THE UGANDA NORTH AMERICAN CONVENTION, SAN FRANCISCO U.S.A SEPTEMBER 2007. THE RAFIKI CONCERT,PAUL ROBESON THEATER LONDON,DECEMBER 2007. THE BUSOGA TWEGAITE CONVENTION,HOUSTON TEXAS USA,MAY 2008.