The Sunday Mail
GOSPEL singer Everton Mlalazi officially unveiled his second album, “In The Presence Volume 2 — God’s Grace”, in style at the 7 Arts Theatre, Harare, last Saturday.
The free and strictly-by-invitation event doubled as his 41st birthday celebration.
Friends, fellow artistes, relatives and business associates joined Mlalazi during the well-organised concert, which was a glitz and glamour affair.
Lucky invitees walked away with gifts, courtesy of the singer.
Among the guests were the South African Grammy award-winning group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Minister Michael Mahendere, yesteryear gospel singer Prince Mafukidze, Pastor G and Zimpraise.
“In The Presence Volume 2 — God’s Grace” was first unveiled during this year’s Easter holiday at the Large City Hall in Bulawayo, which is the singer’s hometown.
The project is also expected to be officially introduced in other places around the country, among them Mutare and Gweru.
Ladysmith Black Mambazo collaborated with Mlalazi on the pulsating track “Nomakunje”, a song of hope that has dominated radio charts for several weeks since its release.
The energetic live performance of the track was breathtaking. One could literally feel the presence of the Holy Spirit in the auditorium.
The musicians were left with no option but to repeat the performance as the audience asked for more.
Mafukidze did not disappoint when he appeared on stage as a surprise act for the night, playing the song “Chitsike”. This was Mlalazi’s gift from his wife Gamuchirai.
Mafukidze took the tempo to another level as he showed the crowd that he still has the touch that made him a household name just after the turn of the new millennium.
Minister Mahendere also spiced up the celebrations when he joined the birthday boy for their collaboration song “Pfugama Unamate”.
“I am happy to be celebrating my 41st birthday. The support I have received from fellow musicians and our fans is so touching. I want to thank them,” said Mlalazi, who is a proud member of the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
The musician was born on May 22, 1982.
He recounted how life was a challenge for him as he grew up.
“You should never give up or stop pursuing your dream, even if you face hurdles. If you listen to ‘In The Presence Volume 2 — God’s Grace’, you will realise the theme is worship. I just want to thank God for who He has been in my life.
“When I was still in university, I used to squat in a colleague’s room but at times I would be kicked out by the authorities as they conducted periodic raids. This would mean sleeping on the streets and often on an empty stomach,” said the award-winning singer.
Other notable tracks on “In The Presence Volume 2 — God’s Grace” include “He is Coming Back”, “I Need Thee”, “I surrender”, “In Your Name”, “Linamandla” and “Nyasha DzaShe”.
The rising singer encouraged businesspeople to support local artistes who are struggling to realise their full potential due to financial constraints.
“We have a lot of talented singers in this country. They just need full support for their careers to blossom,” he said.
Mlalazi was supported on stage by his group, Worship Therapy, and later joined by The Vine, of which he is also the director.
Ladysmith Black Mambazo vocalist Sibongiseni Shabalala said the group was pleased to work with a focused and dedicated gospel singer.
“It has been a very great journey recording the song (Nomakunje) and performing it on stage. We are very happy to be in Zimbabwe and what we have witnessed is something else,” said Shabalala.
Meanwhile, the South African choral group said it was open for collaborations with local artistes.