Older generations nod along to the deep messages in his heartfelt songs while the younger ones who have already fallen in love with the lanky musician over the years, appreciate the lyrical content that defines Jah Prayzah’s compositions.
BY PRUDENCE MUGANIWAH
As the crowd enjoyed the songs and the classic military show by the 3rd Generation Band at Jah Prayzah’s album launch which was held at Harare international Conference Centre (HICC) a few weeks back, it was hard to decipher the meanings in some of the songs.
But after listening to the album properly, it becomes apparent that this is another successful attempt by Jah Prayzah to deliver messages to his fans.
Perhaps his cultural family background and love for the Shona language expressed through his early interest in Shona novels explains the messages found in his songs today. The mbira fusion artiste describes the story of an ordinary boy seeking the king’s audience so he can express his love for the princess through, ironically, playing the mbira.
Joyful tracks such as Eriza and Chinamira have become popular everywhere. Zama is set in ancient times wherein meetings between lovers and courtship could take years, with its key lesson being patience.
His collaboration with Luciano, Roots, which exploits a reggae beat, emphasises the importance of remembering one’s roots while Vanorodza Miseve, as the musician explains, is another version of Soja Rinosvika Kure — both referring to critics who are always out to put other people down.
Ndoenda speaks about sinning and the question posed is: Will I have a place in heaven? Similarly, Tiise Maoko is a prayer to God.
Most of the tracks are pregnant with lyrics expressed through idioms and proverbs. Jah Prayzah admits he was nervous about bringing forth something new as he wondered if it would surpass its predecessor, Kumbumura Mhute. He, however, says he is grateful for the constructive criticism he gets as it pushes him to do better.