Although Chimurenga music icon, Thomas Mapfumo’s blunt sentiments in which he dismissed Alick Macheso as an international artist triggered anger amongst most music lovers, it cannot be disputed that the Sungura maestro is far from that status.
Mapfumo’s assertion is further buttressed by ongoing debates over the ideal formula to put the country’s music industry on the regional and international map.
While the debate rages on, popular videographer, Simbarashe “Simba Gee” Gwati believes quality videos are the answer.
In an interview with 263chat, Simba Gee who is taking baby steps towards making a name as a musician with his forthcoming debut album called Vintage Classics indicated that slick visuals with the country’s own Sungura genre will inevitably gravitate the local music industry on an international conquest.
“I believe Sungura stands a better chance to attract international attention than any other genre in this country. This is because the sound is unique and it belongs to us, it does not have any external forces influencing it.
“Unfortunately, its rise is always marred by poor visuals that accompany Sungura hit songs. It is not a secret that videos are the in-thing nowadays, the best way to push music is through well-tailored videos,” he said.
Bhundu Boys was the only outfit from Sungura genre whose international claim lured significant recognition as they toured Europe in the early 80s.
Zimdancehall, another giant genre that has dominated the country’s music landscape for almost a decade, has also been struggling to lure at least regional recognition with certain sections of society pointing out language barrier as the main deterrent to its blossoming.
Simba Gee, who is popular for his visual works that include Sniper Storm’s Tsvigiri Muhuchi, Selmor Mtukudzi’s Hangasa and Vimbai Zimuto’s Hapana Kwaunoenda, expressed interest in working with Alick Macheso in an effort to bring the singer’s due international glory.