Zim artistes to feature in African gospel contest

HARARE - Local gospel artistes have been invited to take part in the continental Trumpet Africa Gospel Music Awards (Tagma) which will take place at Pretoria State Theatre, South Africa on May 29.

Tagma, which is the brainchild of World Gospel Powerhouse — the producers of South Africa’s Crown Gospel Music Awards — seeks to honour gospel music artistes in Africa and the Diaspora.

In a bid to popularise the new gospel awards, World Gospel Powerhouse president Zanele Mbokazi was in Harare on Saturday to attend a free gospel show held at Anglican Cathedral Hall that featured 20 local artistes who included South Africa-based gospel musician Toggy Chivaviro, gospel music legend Mechanic Manyeruke, Trymore Bande, Gift Mahlupeka, Mudiwa, Jennifer Maneni, Sandra Chirenje and Tatenda Mahachi.

Mbokazi told the Daily News that the forthcoming awards would act as a platform to celebrate top gospel musicians on the continent.

“Tagma is more than just an award bestowed on deserving artistes; it’s about development of gospel talent, exposing the underdogs of the gospel industry to the world. It’s about flying the African flags high. So far we have received nominations from all over Africa,” said Mbokazi.

She added that only artistes who have been in the industry for 10 years or more will be eligible. In addition, only music released within the last 36 months will be considered in the awards’ 21 categories.

Of the scores of local artistes who performed at the Anglican Cathedral Hall at the weekend, Mbokazi singled out gospel music veteran Manyeruke as the most impressive.

“I neither knew ubaba Manyeruke in person nor his music but I was really impressed by his talent.  Apart from his talent, I was also charmed by his musical profile as I heard he has already celebrated 40 years of musical excellence,” she said.

Mbokazi also revealed that Chivaviro, who released two albums — Mhepo Inoperekedza and Tsitsi Dzake Ihuru last month-will be among artistes who will perform at the inaugural Tagma.

Veteran gospel artiste Amos Mahendere, who is among the local musicians eligible for the awards, is confident that the gongs will encourage originality among the new crop of singers.

“I have been in the industry for a very long time and I worked with the likes of Mechanic Manyeruke, the late Jordan Chataika, Brian Sibalo.

“In 1997, I introduced dancing in gospel and I was lashed at left, right and centre. To my surprise it has now been incorporated at a very large scale.

“Gospel artistes should be original and they should be creative. You must be able to tell who is who by just listening to their sound and that is something that artistes from the old school managed to do.

“So if these awards are looking at artistes who have been in the industry for such a long time, they are doing the right thing. They will actually assist the young artistes nurture originality,” he said.

Female gospel artiste, Bethen Pasinawako-Ngolomi also hailed the initiative.

“I am happy that there is such an initiative. Ever since I did my first project (Ndinzverei) I have not been recognised. I am glad that the awards will also give us mileage on a continental platform,” she said.

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.