|Arts Matters Garikai Mazara: Music connects past with future|
|Saturday, 23 June 2012 18:53|
There is something about music, it connects you with the past. Every time you hear a song, chances are it will remind you of the first time you heard it, the best time you heard it, or it will bring those tears rolling down the cheeks.
There are many aspects to judge a song by, like how popular it was on request shows, at the parties, at the record bars, on radio and/or television and at live shows.
Handirambe by Paul Matavire easily comes to mind. The song is so soulful, it touches the very core of your psyche. It is an Aids song, done in such a way it does not bore you, it is not your usual Aids song, but it has deep meaning.
Whilst Leonard Dembo immortalised his name with such songs as Vhenenziya and Chitekete, there are other songs like Kanganwiro that have deeper meaning.
Must have been made for parties, but if there is one song that was made for parties and did achieve that, it must have been Ndochi by Papa Joze (am informed the guy is late now, may his soul rest in peace) and no party in the early ’90s could be held without Ndochi.
If you listen carefully to Jikinya, you would want to think it is the same song as Patrick Mukwamba’s Usambonyara (Nebasa Raunoita). Or Macheso’s Charakupa in later years.
This is not an attempt to look at the best musician or artiste, but rather the best songs, the most touching songs we have been blessed with.
Talking of which, Ndiri Bofu by Mtukudzi is one of those songs that send one into introspection, a song that makes you realise that there is a Maker above. But it would not be my best song from Pakare Paye Arts Centre, for Hazvireve (Rudo Handina) had a lot of significance to me.
But then, for others will say Jerry, done in remembrance of Jack Sadza, will have more meaning; or Rufu Ndimadzongonyedze; or Sandi Bonde, or Svovi Yangu.
Mapfumo at his best. Outside of the collection, there is Vanhu Vatema, which was equally well received though I think Bhutsu Mutandarika, or Pidigori, or Muchadura, well, I have to admit I am losing myself here.
It would be folly to talk about the history of Zimbabwean music without mentioning Solo naMutsai, which was the song of the ’80s.
The Bhundu Boys came on the scene and gave us Simbimbino, which in my humblest submission is the best song the group ever made. That’s arguable, though. And who remembers the late Tobias Areketa — and his song Amai, which pays tribute to our mothers. I am not sure which song, between his and Chiwoniso Maraire’s Mai, would pick the gong for the best song made for mothers.
In my discussion with colleagues I have always argued that Ilanga is probably the most talented group yet to emerge out of Zimbabwe, as on its splitting it gave us individual musicians like Andy Brown (late), Don Gumbo (late), Busi Ncube and Keith Farquason. And then they decided to give us True Love, which is as danceable and repeatable as it was two decades ago. That was music, man.
Simon Chimbetu gave us Oppah (Manica Valley) and there have been some theories that the song was a dedication to Oppah Muchinguri, I am not sure about that and unfortunately during our interactions when he was still around it passed my mind to ask him. But I think his best song has to be Samatenga, forget about Imba Isina Window