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Rugara fights for sungura recognition

By Lowen Mutambara

UNHERALDED sungura musician Danny Rugara has teamed up with fellow musicians in a bid to “resuscitate” the genre, which he feels is slowly fading into oblivion.

Rugara, who is known as FBI Zarathustra in music circles, told Standard Style that the sungura culture was dying and is appealing to music stakeholders to chip in and “rescue the genre”.

“The first authority we as artistes appeal to is our government, via the Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation ministry which is our mother body,” Rugara said.

“There should be measures to promote the Zimbabwean identity and sungura artistes seek to recreate an African identity through the lyrics and the instruments that we play.

“We hold Zimbabwean culture with a golden heart that identifies us with our past. We promote a sense of pride and patriotism in our music. We identify with our nation in sport and music even during times of agony. But where is the Zimbabwean artiste in the society.”

Rugara said most sungura musicians were among the most struggling artistes in the country.

“Our artistes more often than not die miserably without help, medication or funeral policies,” he said.

He said there was need for radio stations to allocate exclusive slots for sungura music to promote the genre.

“We have several radio stations in Zimbabwe, but only Radio Zimbabwe and National FM have programmes that accommodate sungura music,” he said.

“We kindly encourage promoters to assist in the growth and preservation of the genre. We wish for more affordable recording companies to be available for the sungura genre.”

Rugara’s song Mhondoro was number 12 on Radio Zimbabwe Coca-Cola Top 50 last year.

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