HomeNewsFormer Tuku backing vocalist continues to spread own wings

Former Tuku backing vocalist continues to spread own wings


Vimbai Zimuto is well known to Zimbabwean audiences from her early years, through her involvement in various youth programs including Music Crossroads, Pamberi Trust’s BOCAPA youth and FLAME gender programmes where she performed alongside the great Zimbabwean mbira star Chiwoniso Maraire, the UMOJA Cultural Flying Carpet, and a 3-year stint as backing vocalist for Oliver Mtukudzi.

by Entertainment Reporter

From 2007 to 2010 Vimbai participated regularly in Sistaz Open Mic, a platform for emerging women artists by Pamberi Trust’s gender programme FLAME (Flame Literary Arts & Music Enterprise), and made good use of the opportunity to grow and the exposure and experience she gained.

“It was a fruitful experience and very valuable. That’s where I met the promoter for my first album; it was a good platform to meet people, to establish myself as a professional musician,”she said.

Zimuto said she also met different leading musicians that had influence on her growth as a female mbira artist, because there were very few at the time she had started, and women were not really dominant in the genre, but Sistaz Open Mic gave here the chance to communicate one-on-one with professional women in the music industry and understand how to grow from there.

She said she remembered taking part in workshops and discussions, and it was a very positive experience and up to today she could talk to those musicians, who were like sisters in a small industry.
“It gives a connection among artists, unlike someone just doing their own thing out there,”she said.

After establishing links in Europe during a 3-month tour with ‘Daughters of Africa’- a collaboration with 12 women from 8 African countries in 2010, she relocated to the Netherlands where she is now based in Zeeland, performing in various collaborations as ‘Vimbai and Makali Sounds’ comprising 5 musicians from 5 different countries, and continuing to dazzle audiences in the Netherlands and Belgium with her proud delivery of mbira from Zimbabwe.

Amongst other performances, Vimbai recently performed for the Queen of Belgium at the Bozar theatre in the Brussels Centre for Fine Arts.
“The Lord has been faithful to me all the years of my life. This is my second offering to the world.

After working with my first music teacher Emmanuel Mujuru, followed by deep learning experiences with Oliver Mtukudzi , the late Sam Mtukudzi and Chiwoniso Maraire, ZOMA Swing, Zeekoraal (Martha Roelofs), Makali Sounds, and all the important people that are not mentioned here – I am so grateful for all the lessons and friendships learnt and built,” she said.

After 14 years of growing in the music industry at home and spreading her wings further, Vimbai is back from Europe for the launch of her second CD ‘Kure Kwemeso’ which was fascilitated by Harare’s arts facilitators Pamberi Trust and the Book Cafe.

In this offering, Zimuto is supported by gifted young recording musicians: Zealman Munengu and Freedom Manatsa, drums; Chris Fefini, keys; Pablo Nakkapa, guitar; Clive Mono Mukundu, guitar; Solo Sunguro, bass, vocals and Chalene Firey, backing vocals.

“I thank all the hands, minds and voices that made this product possible. Stay blessed,”she said.

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