By Bongani Ndlovu
“It’s not true that Bulawayo does not support their own as I’m evidence that they do”, said Jeys Marabini after he launched his ninth album, Ntunja Mbila in front of a packed Bulawayo Theatre on Friday night.
The fear by Jeys Marabini and other musicians from the city is that residents do not support their own except when it is Highlanders Football Club playing at Barbourfields Stadium.
But those fears were allayed on Friday night when a packed Bulawayo Theatre witnessed Jeys Marabini launch his album.
Jeys said he has never seen so many people at his show in the past 28 years of his career.
“People on Friday night showed that it’s not true that Bulawayo doesn’t support local artistes. When you churn out quality music that they like they’ll support you without doubt. When I saw the crowd that was packed at Bulawayo Theatre, I was left with no words,” said Jeys.
He said he wanted to thank Zimbabweans in general and Bulawayo people in particular for coming out in their numbers on Friday night.
Jeys said even fellow artistes came and supported him and wishes the same for others who launch albums or works of art.
“People should continue supporting artistes from Bulawayo like they did to me. Whatever happens in Bulawayo arts-wise should be supported in full. I wish the same thing happens to other artistes from the city,” said Jeys.
He said copies of the album ran out on the night and they are producing more.
The show started off with an interview between Jeys and MC on the night Morris Touch as he explained what the album was all about and got people to know who Jeys is.
Thereafter it was nearly two hours of Jeys belting out tunes from the album that include S’thandwa, Ntunja Mbila, Mbulali, Bhayisikili featuring Hwabaraty, Yiyo Lingoma, Wobuya, My Chick, Ikhisimusi and Ngizobuyela.
The stand out tracks on the album are My Chick, Ntunja Mbila and Ngizobuyela and these were received well by the audience that comprised both young and old.
Fans in the auditorium danced and sang along with Jeys who was full of praise for all of them for coming out in their numbers.
Upon paying the $12 to watch the show, every person was given the album for them to listen to at home or in their cars.
Back to the stage, when one comes to a Jeys show, they should not expect high octane dance moves.
There was mellow Afro Jazz music that quickened as the show went on as it incorporated dances such as isitshikitsha, ibhiza and muchongoyo.
For the mature folk in the crowd, they watched as Jeys belted out hit after hit.
The band comprised Sam Mataure on drums and Othnell Mangoma on percussion. Rodwell Roda helped Jeys get people to break out and dance. Jeys even invited some on stage and the likes of veteran football coach Cosmos ‘Tsano’ Zulu showed off some silky dance moves.
Fellow artistes such as Zinjaziyamluma and Madlela Skhobokhobo also got in on the act as they had come to support their fellow musician.
After sampling some of his songs, Jeys delved into albums from yester year to dish out music that people fell in love with when it was released.