Mokoomba to rock Alliance

HARARE - Afro-fusion band Mokoomba, which recently returned from a maiden tour of Canada and the United States of America, will perform at Alliance Francaise on Friday.

The weekend concert will effectively be the Victoria Falls band’s first concert as a full band since their recent return to Zimbabwe from North America. Last Friday, a pared-down Mokoomba featuring only lead singer Mathias Muzaza, bassist Abundance Mutori, drummer Ndaba Coster Moyo and guest keyboardist Raymond Mupfumira entertained music fans at Dandaro Inn in the Harare Showgrounds.

Mokoomba, who rose to national fame when they won the 2008 Music Crossroads InterRegional Festival in Lilongwe, have two albums under their belt.

Their debut album Kweseka (2009), an electrifying mix of Afro-fusion rhythms and traditional Tonga beats, won them fans all over the world particularly in Europe.

Mokoomba’s second album Rising Tide (2012) was rated as “one of the World’s 10 best albums of the year” by the United Kingdom-based fROOTS magazine.

The Afro-fusion group is made up of lead singer Mathias Muzaza, Trustworth Samende on lead guitar, Abundance Mutori on bass, Donald Moyo on keyboards, Ndaba Coster Moyo on drums, and Miti Mugande on percussion.

The Friday concert will open with a performance by veterans Kwela Calabash from Bulawayo whose township music is underpinned by a penny whistle sound. Kwela Calabash, whose recent revival is being masterminded by Albert Nyathi’s Imbongi Arts Production, will launch their new album called Umoya which was produced by French producer, Antoine Rajon in an arrangement worked out by Alliance Francaise.

With the assistance of Imbongi Arts Production, Kwela Calabash is slowly becoming a force to reckon with on the Zimbabwean music scene.

The Bulawayo group’s acclaimed performance at the 2011 Harare International Festival of Arts (Hifa) attracted the interest of French producer Antoine Rajon who was not even in Zimbabwe at the time. Last year the French producer flew into Zimbabwe with his engineer to record Umoya which will be launched on Friday.

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