29 Apr, 2022 - 00:04 0 Views


Zim music Matrix

Clive Malunga

During the 1980s, Zimbabwe was awash with beautiful voices and faces.

Television personalities, who lit the small screen, included Mike Munyati, Tsitsi Vera, Elvis Chimene, Musi Khumalo, Josh Makawa and Godfrey Majonga, to name but a few.

Then, radio was being driven across our borders.

We boasted of the finest presenters in Southern Africa.

In the music industry, we had James Chimombe, Susan Mapfumo, Tobias Areketa, John Chibadura, Lovemore Majaivana and Solomon Skuza on fire.

These people were extremely beautiful in many ways.

The nation listened when they talked, the nation listened when they sang.

No one could resist these mega stars.

Competition was intense in the music industry.


 Among these mega stars, I worked closely with Tobias Areketa, Chibadura and Chimombe.

I followed these popular musicians in order to learn what made them tick.

Chimombe was an immensely talented vocalist and guitarist who undoubtedly played a pivotal role in revolutionising Zimbabwean music in the post-independence era.

His sweet voice still talks to us through his timeless hits like George Mudiwa, Mukuwasha, Zvaitika and Jemedza.

Chimombe liked me a lot as a younger brother who gave him his place when he was with me.

Most of my meetings with him happened during lunch hours at the Ethnomusicology Centre where he was pursuing a diploma in music.

He would also confide in me about problems he was experiencing with workmates.

Many women liked Chimombe. 

He was very shy and soft-spoken but knew what he wanted in life.

He wanted to make people happy with his music.

To this end, he was continuously improving his vocals and guitar-playing skills.

He had excellent public relations with his fans.

He was an entertainer par excellence, I never saw James smoking or drinking beer.

John Chibadura was a darling to his fans.

Many fans, including women, followed him wherever he went to perform.

He was a complete performer with everything he needed to make his fans happy – good looks, a seductive smile, a beautiful voice and exquisite dancing skills.

He liked me a lot.

I was a newcomer to the music industry and I had serious financial difficulties.

Sometimes, I would fail to find five cents for transport to Highfield, where I stayed.

Most musicians would meet at Queens Hotel in Harare.

Knowing my difficult times, Chibadura would buy me food and drinks each time I met him at Queens Hotel.

Sometimes, he would send me to buy him some items.

Upon my return, he would give me $20 or $30, which then was a lot of money, which could last me a full month.

Chibadura looked after me for a long time when I was trying to find my way in music.

During my encounters with him, I never saw him smoking.

Another great musician I befriended was Tobias Areketa.

He was an extremely handsome man who made women scream for him when he was present.

Fans loved him and he also had natural love towards me.

I have fond memories of myself regularly carrying Mukoma Tobias’ satchel to the Bonanza Hotel.

There was a resident band at Bonanza which played Areketa’s music.

He would sometimes join the band on stage to perform.

We would move from one hotel to another.

Areketa was the one who introduced me to Borrowdale suburbs.

White ladies would invite him to parties twice or more per month.

We would go together for these parties where he would introduce me to his white audience as his younger brother.

During those days, coming from Western Triangle (Highfield) and crossing the floor to Borrowdale, even on a visit, was a great achievement.

At first, I was overawed but Areketa would calm my nerves.

He would drink beer until the cows came home but I never saw him smoking.

My musical journey was shaped by other artists who showed me the way to go.

After their assistance, I went on to establish myself as a musician.

I became a household name when I released the album Nesango.


My greatest problem was that I could not settle with one woman.

I had been a runner for most of the charismatic musicians in Harare.

These guys had taught me some tricks to use on women and I started implementing their ideas. 

I can single out Areketa.

I followed in his footsteps and those of my other brothers in the music industry and began chasing women.

My friends treasured facial beauty and not beauty of the heart and I took to that too.

I married a beautiful woman but I was never satisfied.

I kept on hunting for beautiful women but there was none who could satisfy my imagination.

I failed dismally in the ‘love arena’.

All the women I fell in love with loved me dearly but I kept on searching.

I took time to reflect on my life and realised that I had failed to manage my love life.

My children were scattered all over the place.

I made a decision to stay alone to avoid more casualties.

I now spend most of my time planning how best I can look after my children, provide them food and send them to good schools.

I have made a bold decision to abstain from sexual activities and, with God’s help, I am managing.

NB: For feedback, you can contact me on [email protected] or WhatsApp/SMS 0782 464 001.

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