The late Andy Brown’s sister Sandra Tatenda Mashiringo has urged her brother’s children and their stepmother Nadine Stoddart to bury their differences.
Report by Silence Charumbira
Queen Mashie, as Mashiringo is popularly known, said the tension between Nadine and her stepchildren was worrisome.
“There is so much tension between the children and their [step] mother,” she said.
“It leaves me in a difficult position because I cannot take sides. I have to make sure the family remains united.”
She was commenting on a recent development that saw Andy’s daughter Ammara elbowing her stepmother out of a song dedicated to her late father.
Nadine had done the song with Que Montana but Ammara stopped it and redid a new version of the song with Montana.
Queen Mashie said the Brown family would soon meet to discuss conflicts in the family.
“We are planning a meeting for the family at which I will have to stress that they have to stop fighting. They all have a lot to learn from life and fighting will not help.
“You cannot tell anyone what to do with their life but fighting does not solve anything.”
Queen Mashie, born to the late Zondiwe Shoko, is the last born in a family of six. Andy was the first born.
The Kenya-based songstress said it was important for everyone in the family to work hard and succeed. Queen Mashie said she had done a lot in her life because she is focused.
Married to English environmentalist Matthew Billot, Queen Mashie says her stay in Kenya has been an eye-opener.
“It pays quite well in Kenya if you are a good musician. It is a country with approximately 42 tribes and, as a foreigner, I tend to gel with every group,” she said.
“The other advantage is that my husband has a stable job as the head of an influential non-governmental organisation and he supports me very well in my projects.”
The Gutu-born artist however, said hard work and patience have almost always made sure she succeeded in her endeavours.
“I went to Nairobi in 2007. It was almost the same time as the turmoil that swept through Kenya. A political conflict in that country was fatal and it was not easy for me to rise but I told myself I would not leave Kenya empty-handed.”
She said she owed her success to that stance.
It was during that same time that she and Billot met and fell in love.
Today Queen Mashie and husband own a new property in Hatfield and a fishing boat in Mombasa.
“My husband also owns a property in England but of course I cannot discuss it. The bottom line is that for one to have success, they have to be serious.
“It is important for the artists to realise that money is secondary. Artists should enhance the quality of their music.
“That is how they get to be invited to perform at festivals where all their lifetime investments are recouped.”