Band on revival mission

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After facing serious challenges following the death of their leader, Sounds of the Muddy Face are on a come-back mission.

Cephas Mashakada succumbed to diabetes late last year and his band encountered numerous hurdles, including the departure of key members.

The band made several attempts to get back on its feet just after Mashakadas death to no avail, as divisions rocked the group with some members claiming the late musicians wife Eunice was depriving them of the late singers public address system and motor vehicle.

I am glad we are past the troubles and we have since replaced the drummer Washington Mendi, bassist Craig Nhekairo and lead guitarist and vocalist Eliah Moffat, who decided to leave the band after Mashakadas death, said Sounds of the Muddy Face percussionist and vocalist Shemu Chibage Mashonganyika.

Tonight, the group performs at Welcome Club in Chitungwiza, while tomorrow they will be at Manyame Nightclub in the same city.
Mashonganyika said only three of the original band members had remained and they held auditions to replace those who left the band. They recruited five people to make up an eight-member outfit.

He said the three, who left the group in December, claimed it would never survive without the late Mashakada, but that was proved not to be true.
Mashakadas death will never stop his music from going on.

We are currently working on an untitled six-track album that he did before his death and we are just polishing it up for release on a date to be announced soon, he said.

Mashonganyika said their relationship with their late leaders wife was good, as she was very supportive of the band.

To them unity and patience were of utmost importance.

Mashakadas wife concurred with Mashonganyika.
Three band members left the band and that was the major challenge. It is not true that I was at loggerheads with the band members, Eunice said.
The band has been rebuilt and shows are already underway.

Mashonganyika said they were not going to look back. At the upcoming show, they will commemorate their leader with songs like Nherera Zvichengete, Kariba, Samson, Vadzidzi Vangu, Edmore, Danga Rehwai and Tariro, among other great hits.

We are going to perform at various shows this year with Alick Macheso, Madzibaba Nicholas Zakaria and Zacharia Zakaria who have all vowed to stand by us until we are fully back on track, Mashonganyika said.

He said before his death, Mashakada had told him the band needed to pull up their socks as his days were numbered. He did not take the warning seriously until his leader died.

Mashonganyika said he believed the late musician knew that he was going to die because he constantly pressured them into practising and also kept telling them that he would not live forever, but would one day leave them to work on their own.