Rescue music dream — Majongwe


HARARE – Avowed government critic Raymond Majongwe is grooming his 14-year old daughter and nine-year-old son to position them to realise his music dreams that have been suffocated by the hostile political climate.

Majongwe, who is set to release his 29th album Bhora Mudondo on which he collaborated with his daughter Ruvimbo and son Mzwakhe, says his music has been a victim of an intolerant political culture.

“My music was not accepted in this country because I was born in the wrong time — the era of hostile political climate”, said the Dhiziri paChinhoyi singer.

“I believe these children will make it big as chimurenga artistes considering their ages.”

The 42-year-old artiste has faith in the abilities of his progeny.

“Ruvimbo has convinced me that she is a good vocalist while Mzwakhe is a talented drummer despite his age,” said the burly singer.

Mzwakhe was christened after renowned South African protest poet and mbaqanga singer Mzwakhe Mbuli who is Majongwe’s source of inspiration.

The former University of Zimbabwe student leader was initially reluctant to initiate his children but the success registered by the children of the late dendera stars convinced him otherwise.

“I was particularly inspired by Suluman Chimbetu who is successfully leading his late father’s musical group — The Orchestra Dendera Kings.

“I found it worthy to encourage and train my children while I am still alive such that it will be easier for them to carry on in my absence.

“I am optimistic that the children will make an impact in the showbiz industry and I hope they will go a long way in popularising the Chimurenga genre,” said Majongwe.

Majongwe is among few artistes in the country who addresses social and political ills through songs.

The former secretary-general of Dynamos Football Club conceded that criticising the establishment is potentially fatal business.

“I have endured a lot of violence, beatings and arrested countless times because of my music.

“Even my family was harassed at some point owing to my music career but this will not deter me from grooming my children to follow their father’s footsteps in life,” said the Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe secretary-general.

Most of Majongwe’s music has been denied air play on the local radio and television stations because of their critical nature.

“The Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) refused to play my music because I sing what I like.

“Some of my albums such as Which Way Africa?, The Daily News (Singing it like it is), Dr Hastings “Kamuzu” Banda, I sing What I like, Samora Machel, Xenophobia, Mr Music Man, Musazvidzokorore Futi—Long Live President and his latest album Psalms 35 have never been played on State — controlled radio stations on political grounds.

In a bid to get some air play, Majongwe released some albums under pseudonyms, a feat that resulted in three of his albums receiving favourable air play.

“That showed that ZBC hates my name not my music. One of the albums is titled Bingaguru.

“Bingaguru is my project and I am reclaiming it now because the album was pirated under Thomas Mapfumo’s name,” he said.

Bingaguru carries the song Tsikamutanda which became the darling of many chimurenga lovers.

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