BULAWAYO – City of Kings musicians believe there is a deliberate ploy to deny them airplay on radio stations and to bar them from performing in national events.
The musicians made the remarks during a media briefing in the City of Kings by new media and broadcasting services minister Jonathan Moyo.
Obadiah Mathulane, a recording artiste with 18 albums under his belt, led the chorus against the alleged marginalisation of Matabeleland musicians.
“We are Zimbabweans as well. Please consider us,” said Mathulane.
“I have 18 albums, but I don’t have a car or a house and I still live in my mother’s house,” bemoaned Mathulane who groomed popular jazz star Jeys Marabini.
Amid flaring tempers during the explosive meeting, Marabini also moved in to support his mentor on the side-lining of Bulawayo musicians.
“People from here don’t receive airplay like others. We are not part of South Africa, we are from here (Zimbabwe),” Marabini said adding that South African DJs receive more airplay than Bulawayo DJs.
“We need to have a variety of artistes from Bulawayo at national galas and not the same artistes,” added Marabini.
During the same meeting Black Umfolosi co-leader Thomeki Dube told Moyo that his group deserved recognition from the Zimbabwe government for coming up with the song Unity at the height of ethnic tensions during the late 80s.
“We don’t get royalties for the song because they treat it like a jingle. It will only be fair if we get royalties,” he said.
Bulawayo has in the past produced music greats who include Lovemore Majaivana, Solomon Skuza, Jeys Marabini and Beater Mangethe.
The region, though, has been hit by a massive exodus of musicians who have relocated to greener pastures.
Musicians like Jazz queen Dudu Manhenga and a string of dance groups have set base in Harare where they get more opportunities.