Imbube star releases third gospel album

BULAWAYO - Black Umfolosi co-founder Thomeki Dube is hopeful that the old adage-third time lucky-will ring true for him as he battles to create a foothold in Zimbabwean gospel music.

The Imbube and Mbaqanga music stalwart has just released his third solo gospel music album Ulungile Jesu as a follow-up to Ngena Endlini (2006) and Moya Wami (2008) that largely failed to excite the market.

The Sitofotofo singer is confident that his 16-track third offering will strike gold for him.

“My first two albums did not do well simply because the recording companies involved did not put any effort in trying to get them to the people,” Dube told the Daily News yesterday.

“I am confident that things will be different this time because a lot of marketing efforts have been invested into the new project.”

The well-travelled musician also defended his decision to dabble in both gospel and secular music.

“As Black Umfolosi, we toured almost every part of the world and in the process we became very popular but still something lacked in us-we; didn’t know Jesus,” he explained.

“During that era, we lost a lot of our members and friends. Most of us, the surviving Black Umfolosi members,  ended up in some unenviable situations simply because we did not know God then.

“I am happy that amidst all that I managed to survive and be a living testimony of what life can sometimes be,” Dube said.

The husky-voiced renowned composer and choreographer, now a senior member of the Unshakable Pentecostal Church, told the Daily News that he composes songs from observing life experiences and from dreams.

Plug tracks on the predominantly Ndebele album include Torompeta, Yes Lord, Amacala, Sizombona, Ikhaya and the title track Ulungile Jesu.

Out of the 16 songs, 10 are brand new, while six were plucked from the two previous albums.

“I re-arranged the old songs and gave them a new flair. I know many did not manage to get those albums so I had that in mind. We have also started shooting our DVD which I am certain will be out mid next month”.

On the latest offering, the charismatic Dube is backed by fellow members from Black Umfolosi.

In a significant departure from Black Umfolosi’s acapella style, Dube is appealingly backed by instruments in all the songs.

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