SNEAK PEEK :Precious Chida
GOSPEL musician Daniel Mhere — younger brother to Favour hitmaker Mathias — says he believes his third album, Another Level, released recently, will be a game changer for him. The Gweru-based musician, who has three albums to date, says while many fans claim that he rides on his elder brother’s popularity, he has since tried to differentiate his music from Mathias’ despite having started off together. NewsDay (ND) Life & Style reporter Precious Chida caught up with Mhere (DM) who opened up about his music journey. Below are excerpts from the interview:
ND: Tell us briefly how your music journey started?
DM: I started music long back, but I only started recording in 2014. I take music as inborn because I remember joining the school choir when I was in Grade 3.
ND: What inspires your music and how do you come up with songs?
DM: Most of the time I just observe what is happening in life and come up with a song, whether it’s a good or bad situation. I come up with a song from those circumstances.
ND: How has Another Level been received?
DM: The title track is the one that fans are loving most. I featured a number of gospel artistes on the album who include my brother, Mathias, Obert Chari, Bernard Betera and Mpostori Mlambo.
ND: Do you think this album is going to be your breakthrough?
DM: Yes, the response I am getting right now shows light to my breakthrough. A number of friends and fans are in love with the project, so I am sure it will make it.
ND: Has music been profitable enough to financially sustain you?
DM: For now I cannot say my music is giving me enough profit to sustain myself. I am still at the foundation of building the name Daniel. Building the foundation is not an easy thing.
ND: Fans often compare you to Mathias. What differentiates you from him?
DM: Yes, I might try by all means to differentiate myself from him but the fact is we are one. We are from the same family, we grew up together and we are always together, but I am trying by all means to differentiate our music through our producers and most of the songs I do are slow beats while most songs by my brother are fast-paced.
ND: What has been your biggest challenge in music?
DM: Music without sponsors . . . Whatever you want to do, there is need for start-up money, which was a major problem for me. When starting a business, you need someone to give you a hand. Recording needs a lot of money for you to come up with a project, so that is a big challenge. Marketing is a challenge as well. It is now being overtaken by piracy hooligans such that you get nothing from your music despite incuring huge expenses.
ND: What’s your take on Zimbabwean gospel music?
DM: Zimbabwe’s gospel music industry is not that vibrant nowadays because of lack of support. I believe gospel must come first because the Bible says in the beginning there was a word, and the word was with God. I wish the gospel industry was supported as it used to be in the past and we will definitely bounce back to become the best genre in Zimbabwe.
ND: Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
DM: In the next five years, I see myself being a music director, having studios and an academy to help those with passion for music.