The problem with Andy Muridzo

By Robert Mukondiwa

It is 00:08 after midnight. The venue is Mutare’s Pick and Save complex. A few furlongs away from a cold misty marsh in a rivulet that breaks the membrane of the city of Mutare separating it into two disproportionate parts.

Musician Andy Muridzo
Musician Andy Muridzo

The river emits the mists of the ghosts of nature, sending a chill across the eastern city.

It is the witching hour.

There is a man, perhaps an apparition that is in a trance on the stage at businessman Isau Mupfumi’s complex.

It is not a human ‘thing’ on the stage although when ‘it’ went on stage, it had assumed the person of rising (and sadly falling) crooner Andy Muridzo who got onto the stage with his Jeetaz Band ahead of a show by Jah Prayzah.

The show descends into a mess.

In a twirl and a tangle of the spirits and man, Muridzo is playing the thumb piano – the mbira, with a sophistry that only the gods can emulate, but only barely so.

His eyes rolling in their sockets as if he is talking to the ancient gods of this magical Mountain Kingdom that Mutare is.

Muridzo seems in touch with the divine, when he is on stage, he talks to the gods!

For all his misguided exploits of trying to outdo bottles by engaging in a misguided game with errant dancer Beverly ‘Bev’ Sibanda, there is one thing that one cannot take away from Andy Muridzo.

When he jumps out of the sheets with Bev and does what he is meant to do – make music – he is arguably the biggest name to look out for in Zimbabwe’s music landscape, no doubt.

Sending the walls and roof of Pick and Save in Mutare shivering at his artistry last weekend, Muridzo proved that with the right guidance he is a star that is awaiting to tear the clouds sown by the Bev saga apart so he can shine again, . You can’t keep a good man down!

Muridzo’s vocals are his biggest strength as he has a voice that can break into a succulent smooth caramel cream and soothe the ears one minute, then go into gravelly and deathly hallow of a rough and unrefined Jamaican ragga god the next.

And yet perhaps it is his facial expression when he is on stage.

One minute he is in a trance playing traditional instruments like he is in the court of Munhumutapa and then looking expressionless as some of his band members engage in their amazing entertainment antics.

It is evident Muridzo is certainly magic waiting to happen.

The problem with him is that he is ambitious and naughty and will challenge anything from human to bottle.

That, however, is also his biggest strength because all genius is flawed! The Chronicle