BY DEMETRIA MANYONGA
NIGERIAN reggae-dancehall singer and songwriter Patrick Nnaemeka Okorie — popularly known as Patoranking — said it was through his keen interest in Zimbabwean music that he came across his compatriot Davido and Tanzania’s Platinum Diamond’s collaborations with Jah Prayzah.
Patoranking told a Press conference on Wednesday afternoon at the Harare International Conference Centre (HICC) that Zimbabwe had “a special place” in his heart.
Speaking ahead of his show scheduled for tonight at the HICC, the Jamaican musician also said he had fallen in love with the originality of local dancehall music before singing a few lines from Nutty O’s Boom Shelele.
“I love the sound of Zimdancehall and the fact that it’s original and it’s African,” he said.
Patoranking said he was amazed that Zimbabwe was the only African country in which Jamaican reggae icon, Bob Marley, ever performed. Marley staged a show during the country’s Independence celebrations on April 18, 1980.
“I follow African music and I do love Zimbabwean music and I have been following it. Jamaican artiste Bob Marley performed in Zimbabwe, making it the only African country in which he performed,” he said.
“Zimbabwe has a special place in my heart and I remember when I was in Jamaica I was told that Bob Marley performed in Zimbabwe.”
The superstar, who started off singing in church during early childhood, said he has learnt the hard way over the years that fame came with the good and the bad.
Performing with his full band, Patoranking is set to share the stage with a star-studied line-up of local acts including Jah Prayzah, Winky D, Sulumani Chimbetu, ExQ, Jah Signal, Nutty O and Ishan.
Tickets for the show, which started selling early last month, are pegged at US$15 or ZWL$45 ordinary, US$40 or ZWL$120 for the VIP ones, while the VVIP are selling at US$80 or ZWL$240.
Concert organisers, Kayse Connect Corporation, have promised an explosive show.