Monday, June 04, 2007


Zimbabwe: if in doubt add a nought

Steve Sparx here continuing the dialogue on “surviving an economic meltdown” - it’s been 3 weeks the only thing that changed was the extra zero on the cost of everything.

The phenomenon known as hyperinflation has led to the introduction of the “simply add a nought” school of economics with the main rule being… “if in doubt add a nought“.

Predictions are that inflation will rise even more and pretty soon we gonna run out of “noughts” on the computer again… suppose we will have to start again from “nought”.

I said it before but the hour before dawn is the darkest and it is at these times that we closest approximate the truth - as the veils fall away the truth is revealed. Expression prevails and creativity emanates. The survival instinct is paramount in us all.

So despite the challenges of everyday survival it is our duty to look to the outcome we desire the most - recognition, success and bringing joy through entertainment.

I have been in England now for a couple of weeks, further promoting our musical cause - sending out promotional literature, talking to promoters and getting our music out to all the contacts made over the past years.

Hopefully this will translate to a tour here later in the year and we are hoping to make it something of a special one too. One of the strengths we developed in Zimbabwe was in utilizing our artists more practically so that by small changes in the backline we could showcase individual artists at the same show without having to move around with complete bands for each showcase act. A good example of this has been that Busi Ncube effectively uses the same backing band as Willom Tight and Dino Mudondo, whilst the same backing group (with a couple of extras) forms the backline for The Collaboration (left). We have made shows where we have showcased 5 different acts each with 5-8 artists using only around 20 performers.

Our plan then is to put together a tour of Scandinavia for Busi and Band Rain in Oct/November and then to come to UK for a series of shows, at which time we will fly in Willom and Dino and then do “double headers” with a focus on the Zimbabweans living in the so-called ‘diaspora’ who would really enjoy that combination. Whilst for those ‘non-Zimbabweans’ in the house they get the chance to enjoy a wider spectrum of Zimbabwean music styles as portrayed by each act.

There are an estimated million Zimbabweans living in UK believe it or not, and they have been sustained on a diet on Oliver Mtukudzi (right) and Alick Macheso - the 2 existing “superstars” of the Zim music scene - they travel here 2 or 3 times each a year. There is definitely a demand for something fresh and that’s the gap we want to fill. But that's not to say we only want Zimbabweans - we hope our music will hold some wider appeal too.

So that’s where we are up to so far - I return to Zimbabwe next week - expecting to be shocked by the changes - a month in one’s life here can truly be defining. Until next time


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