By Style Reporter
Four years ago, three ambitious youths Tinashe William Masangudza, Nyasha Hugin Murada and Wilfred Nikisi decided to come up with a music group with a unique sound which they decided to christen Afro Acoustics.
They call themselves Gwevedzi, a Shona name given to a suitor’s messenger in a courtship process.
Last week the group released their second album, a 10-track project, titled Nhungo.
“Nhungo dwells more on the theme of migration highlighting how migration has affected the society at large, however, approaching the issue from a love angle while profiling the love of young people,” said Murada, who is the spokesperson of the youthful outfit.
The album carries tracks such as Nhungo, Svingo, Ndinouya, Zvichida, Ndiyamurei, featuring JD Wilkes, Ndiringe, Kugwadama, Malaitsha, Zimbabwe and Hapachina.
“The album Nhungo chronicles the love story of a young 21st century couple paying more attention to the husband who goes to various extreme ends of leaving no stone unturned all in a bid to provide for his wife and family,” Murada said.
“It also tells a story of each and every family man living and working in the diaspora and had to leave their families behind in their native countries in a bid to provide for them.”
Murada said the birthing of the group was brought about by their desire to carry messages of love.
“Since most of our songs are about love, the name simply explains the case of ‘why love songs?’, and the answer would be because we are Gwevedzi,” he said.
“So in general, we are all about heart and soul touching issues especially love in particular.”
He said the was group also trying to get the younger generation to appreciate Zimbabwean culture through a fusion of the acoustic guitar, African percussions and mbira in the music.
The group has turned out to be one of the most sought-after music outfits in the country despite having been on the music scene for a few years, thanks to their rare combination of instruments.
Murada said Gwevedzi was established with the idea of entertaining both old and young music enthusiasts.
“Our main thrust is to create a new generational sound which appeals to both, the old and the younger generation through hybridising the local African sound with the European, hence the combination of guitar, mbira and percussions.
Murada said unlike other musicians, Gwevedzi is made up of a rare combination of instruments something which is unique in its own way.
“We play various sounds inspired from within moving away from the traditional sounds which people mostly expect to hear whenever the mbira instrument is played, another trait of our uniqueness, and most importantly our lyricism and vocal patterns are also another thing to take a closer look at in as far as our uniqueness is concerned,” he said.
Since its formation, Gwevedzi has attended several local and regional shows including the Yolk Festival, Oyo’s Festival, Alexio Kawara album launch as well as the Mafuwe International Dance Festival in Harare.
The group has had shows in clubs in and around Harare, including at Gotsha Nyama in Newlands where they perform every Friday and Saturdays.
“We have performed at the Concert for Change in Quilemane, Mozambque, as well,” Murada said.
The group marked their entrance onto the mainstream music industry with a single titled Chido Chemoyo in September 2017. Two months later they dropped another single titled Vanekodzero.
Their first album was Tsambo released in 2018.
Going forward, Murada said Gwevedzi will do more collaborations and penetrating global markets.
“On the album Nhungo we have done a collaboration of the song Ndiyamure with American JD Wilkes,” he said.
“We are working on other collaborations with Marilia Zangrandi from Brazil and the one Barbou Xu from the Czech Republic and hopefully, soon they will be done.”
He said fans can reach out to the group using social media platforms where they put updates.