HomeLife & StyleTuku charms Zambia’s Amayenge

Tuku charms Zambia’s Amayenge

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INTERNATIONALLY-ACCLAIMED Zambian music outfit, Amayenge, who are in the country, were charmed by superstar, Oliver “Tuku” Mtukudzi’s decorated musical journey that they are set to do a collaboration on early child marriages, NewsDay can reveal.

BY WINSTONE ANTONIO

The group, considered the most versatile and successful band in Zambia, was part of the stellar line-up of performers alongside local acts such as Jah Prayzah, Chiyedza Chevatendi and famous Bulawayo outfit, Iyasa, who took turns to entertain merry-makers at Tuku’s 65th birthday celebrations at Pakare Paye Arts Centre in Norton on Saturday.

With their musical style known as Kalindula, a distinctive Zambian popular style with traditional African roots, Amayenge, just like Tuku, have received worldwide attention flying from one tour to another, including Europe and Asia.
Speaking to NewsDay on the sidelines of the celebrations, Amayenge’s manager, Fraser Chilembo said they were open to collaborations, with the inaugural being set with Tuku, if everything goes according to script.

“It will be great to collaborate with Zimbabwean musicians and we are happy that the first one is a song we are about to do with Oliver, maybe by Monday (today),” he said.

“We are set to do a song, which talks about early marriages, which I think is happening now more in the Southern Africa, as there is an old adage that when you educate the lady then you have educated the world, better we give them space.”

Chilembo said they were happy with the support they got from local fans and that Tuku had extended an invitation for them to be part of his annual celebrations.

“We are so honoured that Oliver, personally, had to call that hey, Amayenge, you must join me when I will be celebrating my birthday. Otherwise we are happy to be here,” he said.

“We want to thank our Zimbabwean fans for the support. Of late, about three to four years, we have not been releasing new material, otherwise Amayenge have been active.

“We have been all over, as we under took a very long tour of Canada and China, where we toured about three festivals of China and then we went to Algeria, Nigeria and our neighbouring countries like Botswana, Malawi and South Africa.”

With 32 albums under their sleeve, Amayenge have dominated Zambia’s music scene for decades, embracing the country’s tribes as part of their unique vibe.

Chilembo saluted local musicians for using live bands, saying it has given them an edge over other artistes in the region, revealing that in Zambia, most artistes rely on backtracks.

Meanwhile, at the concert, revellers were in for a treat, as Amayenge gave a unique, polished and dynamic act that was well appreciated and enjoyed by the crowd that had some singing along their hits, among them Aphiri.

Local artistes also did not disappoint, as revellers were sent into a frenzy when Andy Muridzo joined Jah Prayzah and his Third Generation Band on the stage to perform the hit song Watora Mari, which the latter collaborated with Tanzanian music icon, Diamond Platnumz.

The jovial Muridzo charmed merrymakers, as he flawlessly mimicked Diamond Platnumz’s voice much, to the delight of the fans, who cheered in appreciation of his effort.

Another highlight of the show was when the birthday boy, Tuku, joined Jah Prayzah on the stage, as he sang a birthday-themed song, as the former aped the latter and his band’s dance routines, as if they had rehearsed together.

The Tozeza Baba hitmaker, who later performed, and his wife Daisy, saluted the fans and stakeholders in the arts industry for joining him to celebrate his birthday in style.

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