By Tawanda Mudzonga
Published February 9, 2013
Fans and music lovers, get ready for a mind-blowing musical riot. The Book Cafe is on Saturday, February 9, 2013 at 8.00pm hosting some of the most exciting new musical acts in recent memory in a show entitled Chikwata Chabvondoka.
Featuring mbira-punk band Chikwata 263, sensational singer Ammara Brown, the enigmatic Comrade Fatso (Samm Farai Monro) and band Chabvondoka and Mbira Queen Chiwoniso Maraire, this event is set to tear the roof off!
The Chikwata Chabvondoka show is a literal band explosion, promising a riotous display of many different but complimentary musical styles. This show is set to feature some of the hottest names in the music business at the moment. Ammara Brown is an amazing singer whose star has been rising ever since she came in the top 5 of East Africa’s Idol singing competition in 2008.’ A truly exceptional talent, her striking vocals and strong stage presence are unforgettable.
New and old fans will be excited to see the charismatic Brown perform with new collaborator, Comrade Fatso and his band Chabvondoka. Brown has been rehearsing with Comrade Fatso and Chabvondoka for the show they will play at the 10th Sauti za Busara festival (February 13-17, 2013)in Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Chabvondoka, which means ‘it’s a riot’, is an explosive, genre-busting, insurgent act whose music defies categorisation. Founded by lead and spoken word artist Comrade Fatso, the well-travelled band seamlessly blends sounds as diverse as rock, hip-hop, chimurenga, jiti, house and reggae. Chabvondoka have toured extensively and have performed all over the world: from Europe to the USA and from Africa to the Indian Ocean.
Initially Samm had approached me in December about the Sauti za Busara Festival and that’s how we ended up collaborating,” says Brown. “I love their music! What I love about them is that it’s just this perfect blend of the type of artists that they are. I love how they go about things creatively and I love fusing my stuff with theirs.”
Founder of the spoken word and hip-hop Shoko Festival, Comrade Fatso says fans can expect a musical riot or chabvondoka: “Our show on Saturday is going to be the coming together of two crazy bands! It is the first time that we have co-hosted and co-organised a gig between Chabvondoka and Chikwata 263. I think it’s going to be a really nice show artistically. It’s going to be quite different and quite new. It’s a set we’ve been working on with Ammara and with the band for Sauti za Busara next week and it’s been sounding really nice in rehearsals.”
The show begins with a curtain raiser from hip-hop star Synik, one of Zimbabwe’s hip-hop stars on the rise and one to watch in 2013. At the 2012 Hip-hop Awards, Synik walked away the biggest winner of the night, scooping three awards including, Best newcomer, Best Collaboration for his popular track Power Cut and Best Album for his album Syn City. The hip-hop emcee will get the evening started with his acoustic hip-hop set.
Also sharing the stage and adding to the exciting line-up is mbira-punk band Chikwata 263 who are lined up to do a set featuring mbira queen Chiwoniso Maraire. Chikwata 263 is an exciting, innovative mbira-punk band. Their lyrics are fun and light-hearted, punctuated by serious music-playing skills which has earned them a dedicated following in just a few years.
Chikwata 263 is the only band in Zimbabwe dedicated to mbira-punk. A musical tour-de-force, they stand out amongst their peers as a band with a wicked sense of fun. Fresh from a tour of Cape Town last December, the band is made up of charismatic lead singer and guitarist Tomas Brickhill, Mbira maestro Hector Rufaro Mugani, Drumming prodigy Blessing Chimanga and talented bassist Ray Mupfumire. Bringing their brand of mbira delightfully mixed with punk music to the fore, it’s only natural that they would collaborate with the queen of mbira, Chiwoniso Maraire. They have performed together before and blend their styles together seamlessly.
The Chikwata Chabvondoka show will be a high-octane, electric fusion of different music styles and eclectic, talented musicians who will collaborate on each other’s sets, making this show truly unique and not one to be missed. Ammara Brown, who has a family connection to Maraire through her late father, Andy Brown says, “I’ve been onstage with Chiwoniso since I was 9 years old. We have a very long history. And so when we get on stage together it’s like the most natural thing in the world. There is a lot of love on the stage and so I’m always excited to do it. It’s an excellent working relationship and I have a lot to learn from her.”
Brown released her first single, Night of the Queen, at the end of 2012; it has been receiving regular radio airplay since then.
Brown says, “It’s my party anthem, off her first album called Hustler’s Yoga due to be released in 2013.” The singer enjoys collaborating with other artists and believes this Saturday night, there will be an explosive, creative mix of talent guaranteed to please the live music lover.
There’s nothing like being in the same room with a completely different artist. “It brings you closer to yourself and also stretches you as an artist. Fans can expect something fun.It’s a very rare, specialty show and so jump on it.It’s going to be a lot of fun!”
Fans are invited to come out and enjoy this musical extravaganza, in a rare coming together of exciting new artists collaborating in an once-in-a-lifetime show.