The Duela

The Duela (Duela Fernando Bila) was born 12 June 1994 in Mozambique. A resident of South Africa since 1996, his talents includemusician, producer and pencil sketch/tattoo artist. His Hip-Hop career started in 2009, recording his first mixtape in 2013. He has recorded a mixtape each yearsince then. Currently operating independently, his talents and work ethic should see him bag a deal in the not too distant future.


Early life

Duela grew up in Doornkop, Soweto from 1996 till 2006. His mother (Anita Fernando Bila) and younger brother relocated to Rietvlei,Krugersdorp when he was 12. He was left in the care of relatives which involvedmovingto different locations due to financial hardships. He was finally reunited with his motherwhen she managed tobuy a piece of land and build their first house. This meant Duelawould no longer be changing schools.Before joining the rap culture, Duela was part of a dance crew called Umsobomvu’.He had no understanding of the Hip-Hop movement at this time but as the years went by, therapringworm grew from within the pits of his stomach until eventually it exploded and he was hooked for good. Duela worked at Crescent of Hope rehabilitation centre as a construction worker from 2013-2015.He converted to Islam during these working years and is quoted as saying, “This played a huge role in grooming me both as an artist andfor having work-ethic. I don’t think I would have the will and the drive I have now otherwise. I was pretty lazy in my earlier years. Converting gave me meaning. I began to understand the importance of utilizing your talents for the greater good and working hard to refine it.”


Music career


Before TheDuela, MrBila went under the stage name Yung Vice.Under this a.k.a.he took to the stage with old-time friend Versta in 2011. They competed in the ABSA Clash OfThe Techies’ music competition while still doing Grade 11 at Thathulwazi West Rand Hing School.They won the competition and represented their school with full colours.



Yung Vicerenamed himself TheDuela when he dropped his first mixtape titled The Prototype in 2013.It gained him local recognition as a teenage rap artist on the rise. He followed up the hype with Day N Night In 2014. Features included local and international artists such as JSKXXVI (SA), Deeohh (Canada), Reektunez (Nigeria),DanteKatrell (USA), Dogg Billy (SA), Shot gun (SA), and many more. Some of the tracks from this album received airplay on local and national stations such as Metro FMand YFM where he won his first Rap activity Jam competition. He also worked with name brand producers like Ice man Beats (who single handedly produced the 2016 Time Line EP), Ghost Beats, JNZ Beats, 12 Gauge and more. Hisrap style is a mix of Kanye West, Chance the rapper and Young thug with a grisly baritonevoice.Most of his songs were written while taking lunch breaks during construction jobs.


In 2017 he dropped a fine piece of gold called The Price. This gemgained him much needed recognition and saw his fan baseskyrocketon social networking platforms. In 2018 Duela dropped a freestyle on the well-known ‘Tito Mboweni’ instrumental by CassperNyovest, which circulated around the internet with 61k views within a month. He was later invited by Carpo to Touch HD Gown Lifestyle. The gloves were off as four rappers, including himself, battled for a chance to share the stage with CassperNyovest and The Family Tree artists for Nadia Nakai’s birthday celebration. The Duela came out victorious. Proving himself a noteworthy battle rap opponent and being granted the honour of performing with South Africa’s biggest Hip-Hop artist.


~ Music is Life

The Duela

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