Bryan K takes centre stage

HARARE - Rising artiste Bryan Kadengu (23) has suddenly attracted the attention of both fellow artistes and music fans thanks to his pulsating stagecraft and exceptional song-writing ability.

Given his popularity, partly due his latest hit “Heavy Machine,” which is topping most local charts, one would be tempted to wrongly assume that it has been plain-sailing for the Chinhoyi-born young music star who is popularly known in local music circles as Bryan K.

Until November 2015 when he got to perform as perform alongside music superstar Oliver "Tuku" Mtukudzi and Afro-fusion star Victor Kunonga at 7 Arts Theatre in Avondale, Bryan K‘s claim to fame was solely being the 2012 winner of the Starbrite talent search competition.

Even though the crowd was unfamiliar with his songs, this did not deter the young star from making the most of the rare chance of sharing the stage with the celebrated Tuku and Kunonga.

After his sterling performance at the gig, which was promoted by Walter Wanyanya's Ngoma Nehosho, top gigs began to come his way including sharing the stage with South African music stars Mi Casa and internationally-acclaimed Ugandan comedian Anne Kansiime.

“The Ngoma Nehosho live sessions at 7 Arts Avondale last year with Oliver ‘Tuku’ Mtukudzi and Victor Kunonga was an exceptional one. This show should qualify as one of my fondest memories in music,” said Bryan K.

The young star’s talent has also attracted the attention of music promoters beyond Zimbabwe’s borders. Last year Bryan K and Mokoomba represented Zimbabwe at the Malawi Lake of Stars Festival.

The “Nyaya Yerudo “has also peformed at one of Southern Africa’s standout festivals- Bushfire Festival in Swaziland.

Bryan K attributes the success that is now steadily coming his way to his mother.

“I was raised by a single mother in Chinhoyi. I grew up living in a society where people looked down on me because I was living with a single mom so my greatest achievement was hearing my mother say she is proud of me.

“My mother has always supported everything I have showed interest in. I played basketball in high school and my mother always made sure I had everything I needed regardless of the financial situation. I didn’t disappoint because by the time I finished high school I was a basketball star,” said the Marunjeya hitmaker.

Even his decision to quit school and pursue music got the unqualified support of his mother.

“I passed my ‘A’ levels and when I told her I wanted to do music full time instead of going to university, she supported me. I thank God for the family that I have because I do not think I would have managed to achieve the little that I have managed without their help, prayers and support,” he said.

Until he mustered the courage to tell his mother about his dream to be a musician, Bryan K told the Daily News on Sunday about his futile attempts to smother his love for the arts.

“Growing up I forced myself to say I wanted to be a doctor. I said that as I did not want to appear to be odd but the truth is I fell in love with music at a very early age. I started performing “professionally” when at 15 years old,” he said.

Participating in the 2012 Starbrite talent search competition fortified his dream to become a musician and he began to compose songs.

Bryan K is not restricted to a single genre.

“My music is called AfroSoul (African Music with Soul). This music is not defined by genres as is common in most cases; I just communicate what I feel in my heart in whatever genre I feel.

“I have one album to my name called “Nyaya Dzerudo” that I released in February 2015. It includes the title track and others like Jamaican Girl, Marunjeya, Matida, Inseparable, Tanya, Usasiyane Neni and Beautiful You are.

“My latest single called Heavy Machine that is currently topping the charts on our local radio stations,” said the Chinhoyi-born artiste.

Bryan K, who is still single, concedes that the local music industry is beset by serious challenges. He, however, believes that othe passion for music should keep artistes going.

“The music industry, just like any other industry, has its ups and downs and it’s those experiences that make us who we are.

“I have travelled and performed in different countries and its always great seeing people who don’t understand your language loving and appreciating the music. However it is always special when it happens here at home,” Kadengu said.

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