Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

‘Bhonasi’ hitmaker Mukwamba struggling

By Lovemore Kadzura in Rusape

Veteran musician Patrick Mukwamba is struggling to raise enough money to finance his much anticipatated comeback album.

Patrick Mukwamba
Patrick Mukwamba

Mukwamba who had initially planned to release the album in the first quarter of this year has shelved the release until further notice due to serious financial challenges.

From last year to date, Mukwamba has only managed to record instrumentals for two songs that are title track Please Call Me Back and Kubhawa handigari.

In an interview with The Weekender the Jonasi Wapenga nayo Bhonasi hit maker said he is so broke to the extent that he struggled to raise $10 a day for transporting band members from their various locations in Harare to Gramma Records in Masasa.

“The album is definitely coming but what I cannot promise is the time for the release. I am having financial challenges to fund the production of the album. It’s not cheap to produce an album because you have to hire instruments, studio costs, band members have to be paid and transported to the studio. Ndakatotanga kupera mari yebhazi yecrew $10 per day so you see the situation I am in.

“Initially I wanted to engage band members from Rusape as a way of discovering and promoting talent in the area but they demanded exorbitant appearance fees.

“If my finances are in order I will be heading to Harare to complete the recording of the album, so far I had only completed recording the instrumentals of two songs Please Call Me Back and Kubhawa Handigari. The album will have six songs and it will be more of Afro-Jazz as opposed to Mukwamba of the yesteryear.

Meanwhile the 69 year-old musician said he had approached Zimbabwe Music Rights Association seeking legal clarification following the non remittance of royaties by Gramma Records and Longman Zimbabwe for the use of his timeless classic Jonasi Wapenga nayo Bhonasi in Step in Pindukai 5 Bhuku raVana.

He further said he reported a producer of a local drama Mabhodhi to ZIMURA for the use of his song Usambonyara nebasa rako as soundtrack without his knowledge and permission.

“ZIMURA asked me to get my contract with Gramma so that they know whether Gramma can sell my rights without my permission. Even if it is the situation I am still entitled to my royalties just in the case of music sales. I was surprised that Longman started using my song in their book since 1994 and I got nothing from that. How many books have they sold and how much have they made but look at me I am struggling.

“Then there is this producer who used the song Usambonyara Nebasa Rako in his drama Mabhodhi without Gramma Records and my permission. I have left everything with our ZIMURA lawyers and I expect them to move with pace because I am one of the founding members of that organisation,’’ said Mukwamba.

Asked his opinion on the future of Dancehall music which has taken the nation by storm, Mukwamba said the genre is doomed because the artistes are not unique but he admitted that he has a soft spot for Shinsoman.

“Dancehall is bubblegum music it will fade as time moves, there is no creativity and originality. It’s just a wave which will eventually go away. My favourite artiste though is Shinsoman he seemed to be versatile and I like his style. If he works hard that young man is heading somewhere, I enjoy Mawaya waya, I love you Mama and Kaye Kanoti “kuti penge penge wanditenderedza brain” (Kupenga),” said Mukwambwa. Manica Post