Nobuntu excited about new sound

HARARE - Five-member female music group Nobuntu is excited by their new Imbube album, adding that the songs would take people on a spiritual journey.

According to the web, Imbube is a form of South African vocal music, made famous by the South African group Ladysmith Black Mambazo.

The word mbube means “lion” in Zulu.

“We have decided to do a really Imbube album, which is something exciting, we have been called ‘Obabes beImbube’ and we decided why not honour that,” said group member Zanele Manhenga.

“Imbube was typically done by men, the fact that we are doing it is exciting. I love the songs because they relate to me,” another member Joyline Sibanda said.

For Thandeka Moyo, she said she hopes people would be taken through a spiritual journey as they are when singing the songs on the album.

“What I can say about this album is that it’s very uplifting, its spiritual in a way. The songs that are there they really like talk to the soul. They really appeal to that human spiritual side of people and we are hoping that people feel what we feel,” Moyo said.

“Imbube has not always been about a group of men singing, in an African set-up, at family gatherings, families always sing, there is always music at those gatherings.
For me Imbube is more of tradition and way of life, another member Duduzile Sibanda said.

Heather Dube said: “The past two albums that we did, they had a mixture of Imbube, acapella .... but this one is different.”

The group’s previous albums are a fusion of traditional Zimbabwean rooted music with minimalistic percussion, traditional instruments such as mbira and some dance movements.

The group was formed in 2011 on realising the absence of an all-female professional a-cappella group in Zimbabwe.  Their mission is to use music as a wheel of change, way of expression with uniqueness that transcends racial, tribal, religious, gender and economical boundaries.

The name Nobuntu is an African concept that values humbleness, love, purpose, unity and family from a woman’s perspective.

Nobuntu were the winners of the Inaugural Bulawayo Arts Awards 2017, Best Imbube Group. Soon after winning the award, the group went on to tour Europe for a month.
Book on Byo township rhythms released

THE first in a series of books documenting Zimbabwe ngoma rhythms and songs was launched in Bulawayo on August 30,  2018 at the Indaba Book Cafe.

The book is titled Bulawayo Township Rhythms & Songs — 1995 to 2010’ and it was written by Othnell “Mangoma” Moyo.

No new-comer to Zimbabwe’s music community, Othnell grew up in the townships of Bulawayo and as a small child in the early 80s, followed his sister Rea Moyo to her rehearsals with Impilo Arts and NASA at Amakhosi Township Square Cultural Centre.

By the age of five, he was drumming at home in the township with his family and others.

His passion for drumming led him from community to community, watching and learning.

Relating the background and story of his journey, he writes: “My journey so far has led me to share the rhythms and styles of this period with you.”

Today he is an acclaimed percussionist and composer, travelling widely in the world, performing in artistic collaborations and recordings with many musicians of Zimbabwe and from around the globe.

Nhimbe Trust supported the editing, design and layout of the book, for which Othnell says: “I am grateful for the overwhelming support from Penny Yon and Nhimbe Trust.
“Their support made Zimbabwe  ngoma rhythms and songs see the light of day.

“The arts industry is lucky to have such pillars and with such gems, we are surely heading for a better future as an industry.

“My hope for the book is that as well as documentation of our precious traditions for use by drummers, it could be used as a resource for schools, a reference point in terms of preservation of our rhythms and songs.

“I am planning to share the book on various international platforms and hoping the scores will make collaborations easier.” — Nhimbe

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