'Zim Has Got Talent' winner revels in success

HARARE - His father ignored all the signs of musical potential in Divine Chitubura and believed his son’s love for carpentry would one day at least lead him into a more acceptable career.

As a teenager, the 22-year-old’s handiwork had seen him become an entrepreneur who specialises in making beds.

But that all changed two years ago when Chitubura became a Starbrite finalist, before his husky but mellow voice coupled with his guitar skills saw him emerge as the best artist at the Zimbabwe Has Got Talent.

Now his dad is his most ardent follower.

“It has been an amazing ride so far,” says Chitubura whose music journey began with solo acts at church.

“The schools I attended emphasised on education but I increasingly became more interested in music. At the age of 20 my mother perished in a horrific accident.

“Only three people survived, my younger brother Shalom aged two being one of them. My mum did not make it.”

The death of his mother somehow made Chitubura more determined to pursue a career in music.

“That tragic episode kind of revived my passion for music. I felt a great challenge and responsibility. But it wasn’t easy; being the first born I had to help out at the farm where I was staying in Karoi,” Chitubura told the Daily News on Sunday.

“I spent about nine months farming and doing carpentry before stumbling on the opportunity to enter Starbrite in 2013. I later met the 2012 Zimbabwe Hip-hop nominee for best new comer Joshua ‘Karizma’ Makanya and we formed a band called Afro Rhythm.”

Afro Rhythm announced its arrival on the music scene by launching a seven-track album in December last year titled My Destiny.

The acoustic album include hits such as Cinderella, Shot me down, My Destiny and Love Song.

According to the group’s manager Courage Ndekwende Afro Rhythm music cuts across various genres.

“Our music is a fusion of country, reggae, hip-hop and R n B. Pushing the boundaries is something we do on a daily basis because we know nothing is impossible,” Ndekwende said.

“We can safely say we entered the music industry as Afro Rhythm about nine months ago and we started out by entering the Zim Has Got talent as individual acts just to showcase how much talent we have as a group.

“Divine went on to win the first prize and Josh was a finalist. Since then it has been performance after performance.

“We played at the official opening of Parliament last year. We also played at the Chinese Food Festival. The amount of love we have been receiving is overwhelming.”

Josh told the Daily News on Sunday that Afro Rhythm’s short but eventful time on the music scene has been a tale of determination and sacrifice.

“Your undying belief in yourself, your art form and  your desire will be tested but only those willing to sacrifice will reap the rewards,” he said.


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