HomeNewsThe Tocky Vibes Zimdancehall fans did not know

The Tocky Vibes Zimdancehall fans did not know


IT was in September at the now-defunct Airport Lounge when I remember watching Tocky Vibes on stage for the first time.


My judgment, at that moment, I felt was rather harsh on the youthful artiste.

I had seen utter junk on stage.

I had witnessed a studio artiste doing the unthinkable, messing a name he had created with his sober lyrics in the dirt-infested Zimdancehall era.
I was to watch him a few more times, but my confidence in him was never restored.

Fast-forward to December 19 at the Lockdown Gig at Harare International Conference Centre, Tocky Vibes had this glorious chance to redeem himself and cast his name further.

After a sold-out maiden Mzansi tour earlier in the month, it should have been a chance of a lifetime for him to be performing alongside Mafikizolo.

That this was again a full house; talk of 5 000 people squeezing into the venue and close to 2 000 more trying to force their way in, this was arguably the biggest show of the year.

Yet here comes the man of the moment pouring cold water on a crowd that had waited patiently for him.

The venue was not new to him, but Tocky Vibes had to be rescued by fellow dancehall chanter Seh Calaz. Yet even after Seh Calaz’s crucial appearance, Tocky Vibes still managed to reverse that.

It is normal for people to blindly follow a popular figure like Tocky Vibes.

Even more, whenever one criticises that same figure, they call for your head and one’s mother receives the most generous share of insults.

That was the case in the social realm when a number of people mentioned that Tocky Vibes needed to be coached on stage performance.

You cannot have an artiste that bolts off the stage as if he is racing to save himself from the embarrassment of servicing nature’s call in public.
The basic traits of a great performer are conspicuously not in the character that Tocky Vibes is.

He needs to start investing time in rehearsals, if at all he wants to entertain hopes of continuous support.

A disjointed set like his will soon be relegated in small venues in the ghetto or farming and mining towns.

Reports of experiencing challenges with every other promoter do not help any musician.

But Elvis Bokosha, the musician’s manager, was yesterday defensive. He said they have enjoyed a great year except for the last quarter in which a lot of negative comments have been passed.

“I think Tocky Vibes has tried his best, but people have their expectations,” said Bokosha.

“In some instances we just stick to principles. For instance, the Aquatic Complex gig we were told we were performing at 8pm and we got there at 7:30pm and left at 9pm because we had another booking in Mutare.

“But when people start talking they tell you what they want you to believe.

“About Tocky’s behaviour and stage work, all I can say is we expect concerns that come from the fans because if they are talking it means they love us. We will adjust to make them happy. If fans are not happy we have to adjust.”

The musician himself conceded that his performance at the Lockdown Gig left a lot to be desired. He said the year remains great because it is the year that he has made his name.

“I really has been a great year and I am thankful for that,” he said. “I cannot complain much of the unfortunate incidents as those are things that one has to encounter to ensure his longevity on the scene. Only one-hit wonders do not face challenges. If you see your trade being all smooth, then there is something very wrong.”

Tocky said his set at HICC was spoiled by several things and believes ultimately that he was sabotaged.

“We learn from every gig. At the Lockdown Gig I tried out something different and I do not think that is what angered the crowd, but the sound was bad. I have worn a suit before and this time I introduced a throne, but the sound was bad.

“I do not think it has anything to do with my voice because I have never had problems with my voice, but the sound was just poor. It’s funny that when Tuku (Oliver Mtukudzi), Alexio and Mafikizolo performed, there was nothing like that. I cannot point at anyone because I did not see anyone, but it smells like sabotage.”

Tocky said he believes he did his best and is stressed how he would be able to apologise for what happened.

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