‘There is no new or old Fungisai’
By Tonderai Zvimba
Renowned gospel musician Fungisai Zvakavapano-Mashavave has responded to fans who were saying they miss the old version of the singer saying there is no old or new Fungisai as all she is doing is packaging gospel music in a way many can relate.
Fungisai has been in the music industry for over a decade with 15 albums to her name. But in this journey, she has moved with the times and has somehow reinvented herself evidenced by her fusion of gospel with Zimdancehall music.
This is likely what has led to her ‘old’ fans who remember her from 2001 when she released mellow songs ‘Kurarama Inyasha’ and ‘Mbiri Ya Jesu’ saying they miss her as a lot has changed.
Two years ago, the singer took many by surprise as she took a path that was unexpected of a gospel musician as she rebranded and started doing collaborations with Zimdancehall artists such as Killer T on the track Vanondibatirana.
This put a twist to her usual type of music and left many in the gospel sector baying for her blood.
Because of this change, she was trolled on social media and called all sorts of names. However, those in the Zimdancehall scene were quick to embrace her and gave her names like Empress Fungisai and Ras Fungisai among others.
On her part though, collaborating with Zimdancehall musicians worked well for her as her almost fading music career started booming once again.
She was invited to Zimdancehall awards were she further raised eyebrows after making a grand entrance in a convertible BMW escorted by motorbikes dressed like a youth.
This for many was a signal that the good church girl had gone bad as being a gospel musician, she was expected by society to behave in a certain way.
Fungisai, who has been off the limelight for a while said she was undeterred by people’s negative comments.
“If they don’t talk, then that means I’m no longer relevant,” Fungisai told radio personality, Patience Musa during an interview on ZiFM Stereo earlier this week.
She later took to Facebook to share with fans that she would be releasing a single titled Kumusoro. She said it would have two versions with one being a hymn with a dancehall tune.
Kumusoro, Fungisai said was produced by Zimdancehall producer Oskid and condemns drug abuse.
She said the song’s video would have two versions, the club version as well as the family version to cater for her two different markets.
“I have decided, because people talk too much, to package the video twice and make two videos that will appeal to different people. There’ll be a family version and what I’ve called the church person’s club version.”
Explaining why she was producing club music, Fungisai said: “I’m a Christian and we, as young people, had gotten to a stage where people were convinced that church was boring. So I said to myself, I need to be in every space and convince everyone that we can be in that space.
“Our responsibility is to spread the gospel through music by packaging the same message and its relevance to different people from different walks of life – in a way that the young people understand and can identify with and that’s what I’m doing.”
Upon hearing that there would be club versions of gospel music, some of Fungisai’s followers were quick to respond saying they miss the old Fungisai to which she responded: “There’s no old or new Fungisai. I have it all here – the past, present and future, all relevant enough to cut through generations as my calling demands.” The Chronicle