8 June 2018
WHENEVER showbiz stalwarts strike right chords, minnows and unrepentant copycats sneeze.
As the titans take real control, novices are either exposed while pretenders will certainly fall by the wayside or join the showbiz cemetery.
While there is nothing wrong learning from the best, it is also advisable to give credit where it is due, especially when the elders show us the way.
And one such person who has done what is expected of elders is sungura ace Alick Macheso.
The Orchestra Mberikwazvo boss, who celebrates his 50th birthday, Orchestra Mberikwazvo’s two decades of existence as well as his 11th album this Friday at Chitungwiza Aquatic Complex fortress, marks his triple celebrations with pride.
And his latest album, Dzinosvitsa Kure, is not only worth the wait and purchase, but does sum Macheso’s long journey in showbiz.
It’s a project, which is not only lyrically rich, but an effort which redefines the real Macheso, sungura enthusiasts have always loved.
After stuttering in the last two or so previous experimental projects, Macheso had to take note of his fans’ appeals.
He reverted to the original Macheso who would easily win hearts of merry-makers effortlessly.
This time around, Macheso did away with discordant backing vocalists, uncoordinated chanting, wish-wash sound mixing and engineering coupled emotionally-charged, yet weak lyrics.
While it’s evident that Macheso’s copycats have been finding the going tough when he was silent as they had no template to copy from, the sungura virtuoso continues to preach the gospel of originality.
And those who continue copying him and failing to reinvent the wheel, it’s high time they do so before they are forgotten forever.
Back to the brand new baby Dzinosvitsa Kure, Macheso has managed retrace own roots by engaging veteran producer Bothwell Nyamondera whose Midas touch can be easily felt.
It was Nyamhondera who helped Macheso to find his own identity and groove when he left Madzibaba Nicholas Zakaria, which has made him a household name.
Not only is Nyamhondera’s touch felt, the no-nonsense producer has ‘whipped’ Macheso in line after a few years of the star experimenting with novices.
Nyamondera’s input should be a lesson that owning a studio (as is the case with many artistes in the mainstream music industry) does not make one a producer too.
It is division of labour and splitting of roles which makes one come up with a well-knit project.
The intro of the opening song – Chikuru Kurarama – is catchy as it easily gives you a teaser of what is to follow.
The coordination of instrumentalists is awesome and it appears Macheso now has faith in his men.
His men can now express themselves freely, albeit being superintended by their boss.
Message wise, Macheso like a true father figure who has had his sad moments in love, calls for dialogue among between ‘feuding’ lovers.
He urges lovebirds to quit when efforts for re-engagement have hit a brick wall.
In the next trio of songs – Pfuma Yacho, Ndakakutadzire and Kudzwai – Macheso dwells much on the general aspects of life.
He preaches the eternal gospel of hard work, love and need to respect life in general and embraces challenges which comes with it.
The next two songs – Madzitete and Vane Zvavanoda – make the album complete.
While love messages dominates in this album, Macheso tackles the subject from the counsellor’s perspective.
It appears after his well-publicised marital mess with his women, court battle and of course the ridicule he faced, Macheso can now counsel feuding parties from experiencing.
In a nutshell, Macheso’s latest album redefines the original Baba Sharo who despite living in the shadows of many managed to create his sound.
It is the same sound he appears to have abandoned experimenting a lot which he reverted to.
And the response from every corner is just amazing as Macheso did the right thing by going back to the drawing board and engaged the same man – Nyamhondera – who gave him the sungura keys.
As we indicated earlier, Baba Sharo’s 11th album is surely worth the purchase and wait.