AFRO-JAZZ group Jesa continued to write their own piece of history at the annual Chibuku Road to Fame competition after emerging ultimate winners for a second year in a row to book the sole ticket to represent Harare province at the competition’s national finals set for October 5 at the Glamis Arena.
BY WINSTONE ANTONIO
The six-member group beat nine other bands as they showed their prowess, amassing 165 marks at the provincial competitions held at Vamrey Bar in Chitungwiza on Saturday.
For their efforts, the Chitungwiza-based group pocketed $1 500 while second and third-placed Bark Band (Afro Jazz), who got 143 marks and Yenge Family (Rhumba) — who scored 123 marks, walked away $1 300 and $1 200 richer, respectively, with other participating groups receiving $500 each.
In an interview with NewsDay Life &Style on the sidelines of the competition, Jesa’s manager Gram Makwarimba said their unique sound and presentation provided the magic for their victory.
“As Jesa band, our existing motto is that either we win or we win because we don’t have two options at all. We came well prepared for the win,” he said.
“The strength of our sound, uniqueness of our music as well as our attitude also helped us to emerge victors today (Saturday) and we are also certain that at the nationals finals will be the winners.”
He said part of their prize money will go towards the official registration of Jesa music while the rest will be used to create their website.
Formed in 2015, the group has proved to be a force to reckon with, both on the local and international stages, with the outfit performing at several concerts in Europe.
“As Jesa Band we are driven by the passion to put our country on the global map in terms of arts and culture. For this task it is already work in progress considering many live concerts we have staged in Europe,” he said.
On the international stage, their efforts have also not gone unnoticed after receiving the 2016 Imagine Festival award for their participation at the festival held in Croatia.
Unlike the previous edition that was mainly dominated by such groups, this year’s competition had only two sungura bands as Afro Fusion groups ruled the roost with seven outfits and a solitary rhumba outfit.
The event was graced by guest artist Mike Ngwaza and his Njanja Express who are also the competition’s products.
The Chibuku Road to Fame is Zimbabwe’s largest grassroots talent identification programme run by Delta Beverages through their Chibuku brand in conjunction with the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe.