LAST WEEK Nicholas Zakaria, the leader of Khiama Boys band, launched a video for his yesteryear song Zomvelamvela in Harare where the Daily News on Sunday reporter Vasco Chaya took the opportunity to ask him a number of questions pertaining to his music career. Below are excerpts of the interview:
Q. You have just launched Zomvelamvela video, a song which was released way back. What is the motive behind this?
A. We are in the process of launching all our yesteryear hits but we have decided to start with Zomvelamvela owing to its universal language. I sang it in Chewa, a language which is common in Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique and South Africa, among other countries.
The idea is to give our yesteryear hits a new shelf-life. Back then, it was difficult to come up with a number of music videos mainly due to shortage of resources; money and recording studios.
Now I have found strategic partners who are willing to finance the project.
Q. What is your favourite track from all your songs?
A. I have a number of favourite songs from the list and I also have a number of songs that I do not like.
One of my favourite songs is Mazano. As a father, I am proud to be associated with the message on the song. It talks of the importance of respecting everyone despite his or her stature in the society.
However, I will not mention the songs that I do not like at all. I feel I rushed most of these songs. They are half baked songs.
Q. Apart from the videos project, what else should we expect from you?
A. I have a joint studio album that I did with my son Simon Mutambi. It is made up of six tracks. Half of them were written by Mutambi while I contributed the other half.
The album is still to be named but fans should expect it any time from now till year-end.
Q. Why did you choose to do a joint album with Mutambi?
A. Mutambi to me is more of a son. He respects me and he is good to work with. He came up with the idea and I agreed.
Q. Who is your favourite musician in the country?
A. I have many favourites but topping the list is Alick Macheso and Mutambi.
Q. What’s your favourite song from Macheso and Mutambi?
A. From Macheso I like Mundikumbuke because it is a Chewa song. I love Chewa because I am originally from the Chewa community.
From Mutambi, I like his song Rhoda Mutsvuku. I fell in love with this song because of its message which is mature.
Q. You have been working with some musicians from Zimdancehall. How do you view the genre?
A. They produce good music which is different from ours. As they are young, their music also appeals to the young generation. However, some of them need to clean up their lyrics.
We do not encourage them to sing dirty music. I have enjoyed working with some of them including Jah Signal and Shugeta among others.
Q. Who is your favourite Zimdancehall musician?
A. My all-time Zimdancehall musician is Winky D. I love almost all his songs. He is a mature musician and very humble.
Q. Most people keep referring you to as Madzibaba, a title you earned from an apostolic church way back. But now that you have since moved to Pentecostal churches; do you still want to be referred to as Madzibaba?
A. I still love the title. Yes I have moved to another church but the title stuck.
Q. What are your future plans in the music industry?
A: I have a commercial stand in Chitungwiza and my wish is to build an arts centre there just like the late Oliver Mtukudzi did in Norton.
Mtukudzi’s Pakare Paye is a hub for music. I want to keep on teaching youngsters on how to play a guitar and write music.