Chipfumo tackles Chingwizi refugees’ problems in new single

TALENTED, but often underrated artiste Progress Chipfumo —famous for his social commentary — has released a single that tells the story of the experiences of thousands of families at Chingwizi Transit Camp in Masvingo after the Tokwe-Mukosi dam floods.

TAPIWA ZIVIRA
ONLINE REPORTER

Listen to the song on Progress Chipfumo’s Facebook page, or on Soundcloud

The song, a mellow and soft kind-of-reggae piece, starts with an acoustic guitar that is immediately backed by repetitively rolling drums, a moderate, but tight bassline, electronic keyboard synthesis and other harmonising instruments that go on for 42 seconds when a calm and natural Chipfumo interrupts with his first line: “Mai nevana kumusana, mbuya netuzukuru, vagere zvakanaka . . .”

It is at this point that Progress, like a storywriter, paints a picture of life before the Tokwe-Mukosi floods. In a few words, he explicitly tells a story of villagers who were living a happy, normal life — mothers carrying their babies and grannies blissfully spending rural moments with grandchildren.

Then, without warning, floods came and there was bararamhanya, pandemonium and inexpressible agony all over.

Houses were destroyed, families and friends got separated as a result, he sings.

Once a self-sufficient community, Tokwe-Mukosi villagers became a humanitarian case overnight.

Statistics show that over 18 000 people are living at Chingwizi and are entirely reliant on aid.

Although government and non-governmental organisations have assisted, there is still need for more to be done to meet the victims’ humanitarian needs.

So, at 22 seconds, after the second minute, chanter Potato comes in to recite, in his raspy and gruff voice, the problems faced by Tokwe-Mukosi flood victims.

He goes on to appeal for sendi-sendi [cent by cent] assistance.

The narrative goes on, Progress — who participated in last week’s Zimrights Tokwe-Mukosi benefit concert and has been to the Chingwizi camp on a musicians’ tour — progresses by singing about the need to look at the future of the children of Chingwizi
floods whose education and other needs have been affected by the floods.

A Sounds of the Motherland smooth-voiced female band member enters with a divine touch, quoting Bible lines: “There is much happiness in giving than receiving.”

All in the name of love, God shall give blessings to those who help the Chingwizi victims, goes on the song.

In line with the “cent-by-cent” form of assistance, Progress quotes a famous saying about a teaspoon emptying a huge sack of sugar and urges people to take it teaspoon-by-teaspoon to fill the needs of the flood victims.

“Teaspoon yakapedza saga reshuga tikadzorera rinozara”

Progress, a musician who grew up in a separated family, said in an interview: “As someone who understands how it is like to live from hand-to-mouth, it is my hope that the song raises awareness about the needs of the flood victims.”

“I did the song with a personal passion, hoping that it touches the hearts of those who can assist.”

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11 Comments

  1. Saka potato achiri kuimbawo?

  2. Big up to Prog & Potato lets help guys bit by bit your help & intervention is seriously needed just imagine someone sleeping in a tent with this kind of weather.

  3. What a beautiful track. This guy is the Mtukudzi of tomorrow

  4. sure blessed is the hand that gives than that which receives.let us help guyz even with prayerz to enable god to provide more.let there be manna also.we nid miracles there not in churches only

  5. I luv the song keep it up Progress

  6. thanks newsday for publishing good news Progress anogona.

  7. zanu pf trying to murder the karanga people. this was not a natural disaster but a planned “disaster”. How do you block a natural water course and expect water not to gather in the basin? why did they not move the pple before they built the dam wall etc? nxa ndezvechizezuru planning dzacho.

  8. big op progress,the best vocalist, guitarist,artist in zimbabwe

  9. kip it up homeboy Chipfumo unogona iwe

  10. Progie is an unsung guitarist in the class of Louis Mhlanga,Andy brown and Tuku.Thanx for this track maybe people will understand plight of Chingwizi

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