BY WINSTONE ANTONIO
RISING gospel singer and songwriter Everton Mlalazi (pictured) says it is not easy to make a breakthrough in the cut-throat music industry which he said was dominated by a lot of talent and called for one to work hard.
In an interview with NewsDay Life & Style yesterday, The Vine group founder and director Mlalazi said he would soldier on until he created a vibrant brand on the gospel scene.
“I started singing at the tender age of five in church choirs and pursued my passion to become a professional artiste, leading to the release of my two singles Jesus is The Answer (a cover of Andrea Crouch’s song) and Uyingcwele, a worship song that calls to remembrance the Holiness of the Lord,” he said.
“In the process that led to the release of these two singles, I have realised that the gospel music industry in Zimbabwe is blessed with other powerful musicians like Michael Mahendere, Janet Manyowa and Pastor G, among others, who have made it already and breaking into that space requires hard work and commitment.”
With only two singles under his sleeve, Mlalazi said he was happy to have been already introduced to an international audience through the Uyingcwele’s video which is receiving international exposure playing on regional television channels such as DStv’s TRACE Gospel and One Gospel of South Africa.
“I am happy that my music has been accepted very well locally and beyond the borders. The video of the song Uyingcwele is playing on TRACE Gospel and on One Gospel of South Africa. Back home, the song has been topping the Star FM Gospel Greats Charts for four weeks in a row now and is receiving fair airplay on other local radio stations. It is also playing on national television ZBC-TV,” he said.
“Having the Uyingcwele video playing on such regional platforms is a stepping stone in my musical career. God is behind this success as without him I am nothing. Through God’s hand, I seek to push for the best to spread my music to international audiences.”
Mlalazi, who draws inspiration from the likes of Benjamin Dube, Joyous Celebration and Donnie McClurkin, said music was a language and with it, many people were given hope and inspired to carry on.
“My music is inspired by my belief in the omnipresent, omnipotent God. As the COVID-19 pandemic made people lose jobs and income, lose loved ones, many people have lost hope and are asking: ‘Is God still there?’ Yes Jesus is the answer, yes God remains God. He still sits on the throne and does not stop being God because we have problems. He is God of the mountains and is God even in the valley,” he said.
“In gospel music it’s difficult to identify a strength, but trust me I believe that God is always and will always be with us. Music must come from the heart and from a place where one has a relationship with God.”
Mlalazi said he would continue to perfect his craft through the singles, as he worked towards the release of his debut album before year end if everything went according to the script.
“I am back in the studio working on a new song titled Ekhaya as we continue to make our music known ahead of the release of our first album if everything goes according to plan before the year ends,” he said.