Leonard Zhakata can now let out a huge sigh of relief and shout: “Victory at last!”
After almost three years of uncertainty over the release of his latest project Gotwe (Last Born), the album will today hit the streets.
The musician had a protracted wrangle with his former record company Zimbabwe Music Corporation (ZMC) which hung on to his recorded material in unclear circumstances.
Zhakata decided to quit ZMC in March this year after realising the company was continuously dragging its feet on the album release, but he could not immediately move on to another company.
The musician claimed the record company could not release his master copy for unclear reasons.
On Thursday, Zhakata was a happy man saying he had at last obtained the green light from ZMC to move on with his career.
“They have told me that I am now free to record with any company of my choice and I am rushing to Metro Studios with the master copy to have the album produced in time for its release tomorrow (Friday),” said Zhakata.
The musician congratulated himself in an advertisement in Thursday’s NewsDay announcing the release of the album.
“Makorokoto, amhlope, congratulations, Leonard Zhakata and Zim All Stars for the release of new nine-track album Gotwe (Last Born) coming out on the 8th of July 2011. To all our fans, thank you for the support and patience for the long-awaited album,” read part of the advertisement.
In the last couple of weeks, Zhakata had vowed to have his album released by whatever means possible.
Metro Studios director Emion Sibindi confirmed that they were working on Zhakata’s new album.
“He has brought the master copy today (Thursday) and we will have a brief discussion with him before we start the production process. We are hoping to work and ensure that the album is on the streets tomorrow (today),” said Sibindi.
ZMC general manager Emmanuel Vori refused to comment on the issue saying he could only speak about Zhakata’s issue in the presence of the musician because a lot of issues needed to be clarified on the matter.
“I have no comment on that issue. I can only talk to you in the musician’s presence so that everything is clarified,” said Vori.
He however confirmed writing several letters to Zhakata regarding the album.
The musician believes ZMC could not release his album because some tracks had been politically interpreted.
Tracks on the album are It’s Good for You, Misodzi Yerudo, Ndiri Uto, Mazvita, Muvhimi Nyakushava, Rima Rapera, Uchandipa Menduru and Dambura Mbabvu.
The new album will be officially launched at a show at Sports Diner in Harare on Saturday night. The show will also feature Progress Chipfumo and Jah Prayzah.