By Tonderai Zvimba
Contemporary rhumba/tshibilika musician Clement Magwaza, has urged organisers of award ceremonies to give winning artistes reasonable amounts of money.
The Kokotsha Makokotsha hit-maker whose song Khal’uphethe is nominated for outstanding song at the National Arts Merit Awards (Nama) said: “I appreciate the effort that is made by the award ceremonies to recognise and uplift artistes for their work, but it’s always sad to receive an award and get a miniscule amount, and sometimes nothing.”
Magwaza who clinched the Best Tshibilika gong at last year’s Skyz Metro FM Music Awards and Bulawayo Arts Awards said artistes in Zimbabwe generally have fewer means of making money with their music so the award shows should be one of the means that they can make money.
A snap research showed that award organisers in Zimbabwe show their token of appreciation in various ways depending on sponsorship.
Skyz Metro FM’s station manager, Godwin Phiri said: “We don’t give the winners money, but we show our appreciation through gift vouchers.
“In our first edition in 2017, we gave artistes grocery vouchers and for last year’s edition, the award winners received smart phones.”
Phiri said musicians need to understand that: “We’re living in a tough economic environment and we always try to show our appreciation the best way possible.
“We pay artistes who perform at our awards and mostly those who perform are the nominated musicians.”
Magwaza is not the only artiste who has cried foul over the lack of money at awards ceremonies. A couple of months back, Zimdancehall musician Killer T took to social media to blast award shows that do not pay artistes and he requested to be removed in the nominees list of the recently held Star FM Awards for that reason.
However, the Star FM awards had sponsored categories which saw some artistes walking away with large amounts of money like ExQ who walked away with US$1 000 cash and R10 000 spending money in South Africa courtesy of the event’s sponsors – Impala Car Rental.
Understanding the importance of sponsors, Magwaza urged corporates to partner more with local award ceremonies.
He said there are some companies who conduct road shows while playing his songs instead of engaging him to perform.
“These companies need to engage rhumba artistes and give us endorsement deals just like they do with other artistes because we also command a great following,” he said. On his career, the rhumba musician said he would not be releasing an album this year as he will be promoting his album Khal’uphethe that he released late last year as well as its DVD which was released in January.
March 23, Magwaza will be in South Africa where he is billed to perform in Polokwane. From there he will head to Gaborone.
“After my two shows in South Africa and Botswana, I’ll embark on my Matabeleland tour which will start on April 11 in Bulawayo. The next stop will be Gwanda followed by Beitbridge, Victoria Falls, Hwange and Binga. The Chronicle.