BY TAFADZWA KACHIKO
AFRO-FUSION musician Brity Yonly has bemoaned how popularity in showbiz is hardly matched by earnings due to a raft of problems, chief among them piracy, which she said stripped musicians of their livelihood.
Yonly, who recently released two singles — Fame without Money and a rendition of Zvaitika by the late James Chimombe — said it was sad that musicians were still suffering despite their popularity.
“Musicians and filmmakers are among popular figures in society, yet their constituency is languishing in poverty. It’s our common problem. This cancer has made
it difficult for us artistes to enjoy the fruits of our sweat,” said Yonly, who featured in a film titled Maroro, which is set for release in September.
“I never pocketed a cent from my 2016 album, Mwana Wamambo. Instead, I found pirated CDs on the streets of Mbare being sold by vendors.”
Yonly said a lot of entertainers’ fame exceeded their incomes and some artistes compromised themselves by performing for meagre fees when they still needed to
pay their band members.
“There are band-related costs we incur and, on the other hand, we have families to support and bills to pay. Piracy needs to be sincerely nipped because if
not, artistes would continue to earn peanuts from their sweat,” she said.
Fame without Money features Gracious Sithole, Prosper “Proskan” Masuku and David “Datler” Makoni. The singles were produced by Verenga Empire in Zvishavane.
Yonly said she did the Zvaitika rendition as an honour to Chimombe, who inspired her song-writing style.
The artiste ventured into music in 2013 when she joined The Blacks Band as a lead vocalist before going solo in 2014.
She is currently the brand ambassador for a United States clothing label, Lamonki Collection and Pasichigare Heritage as well as Leisure Centre in Domboshawa.