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Is Bekezela the new Majaivana?

By Langalakhe Mabena

The country has had great music names and many people find solace in what we now call old skool music.

Bekezela Nkomo (in red) performs at Jacaranda Music Festival in Harare. —Picture: Tawanda Mudimu
Bekezela Nkomo (in red) performs at Jacaranda Music Festival in Harare. —Picture: Tawanda Mudimu

Lovemore Tshuma, better-known as Majaivana, is one of the many music legends that Zimbabwe has spawned and most yesteryear hits that include Majaivana’s Umoya Wami will be outstanding for many years to come.

As such a question that still begs for an answer is, who will step into Majaivana’s shoes?

But at a time when Majaivana’s long lost musical spirit has been searching for a body it can possess, it seems to have finally landed on Zimbabwean South Africa-based jazzman muso Bothwell “Bekezela” Nkomo.

Courtesy of his recent cover performance of Majaivana’s sensational Umoya Wami, at Jacaranda Festival in Harare and at South Africa’s Zoo Lake, Nkomo has proved to be a darling to many Zimbabweans and South Africans.

His performances at the two venues reportedly moved many, with the compacted crowds singing along to the hit song.

The Amakhosi Cultural Centre graduate’s first attempt to imitate the legendary Majaivana was in Johannesburg at a festival held at Zoo Lake, where he reportedly wowed over 6 000 fans who were in attendance.

“I was inspired by the overwhelming joy and love I received during my first performance of Umoya Wami in Zoo Lake and this made me pride myself to be associated with Bulawayo music,” said Nkomo.

The recent xenophobia attacks that punctuated Mzansi’s City of Gold got the better of Nkomo as he fell homesick.

In that regard, he was compelled to convey the message that he missed his home country by mimicking one of Zimbabwe’s greatest musicians to emerge from Bulawayo.

He added: “Last weekend, I took the act to Jacaranda Festival in Harare and I felt connected to Lovemore Majaivana as everyone sang along to the song Umoya Wami. It was a great experience as I hardly heard my voice.”

In June, Nkomo scooped the Outstanding Ambassador in South Africa at this year’s Roil Bulawayo Arts Awards and he is eager to remain a great representative in foreign lands.

He also plans to give Majaivana’s popular track some touch-ups.

“Majaivana composed and recorded the song way back in a period where there were little resources to smoothen the production process, therefore, I am planning to remake the song and give it a current twist with improved and advanced equipment,” he said. B Metro

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