Veteran musician and pioneer of commercial gospel music, Mechanic Manyeruke has once again proved that he still has got the talent that God gave him.
BY TAWANDA TADERERA
Currently, the gospel singer is working on his new album Mangiringende. The album carries eight tracks that exhibit the musician’s experience and maturity.
It maintains the musician’s unique flavour and Manyeruke says he will maintain the beat that made him a household name.
His coming album, which is set to be released this month, features his two sons — Emmanuel, better known as Guspy Warrior in dancehall music circles and Alexander Manyeruke, who is also a gospel singer and attends church at Prophetic, Healing and Deliverance Ministries.
“They are not yet decided on which songs they want to be part of and I am proud of them because they go to church and at the same time pray and it’s a blessing to have them,” Manyeruke said.
“As a father, I have to guide them in the right path.”
Manyeruke said he was working on a collaboration with South African gospel musician Sipho Makhabane on the new album.
“We are on our way to having a collaboration with Sipho on the song Kubva Muguruva and he has approved that,” the 73-year-old singer said.
“We can have it and it is my honour to work with him. This helps us a lot as musicians to share some experience with international artists.”
Baba Manyeruke, as the singer is affectionately known, bemoaned lack of focus in musicians as they tended to take things for granted.
“Concentration is very important in everything you do. If you plan on doing something, just give it time and you will succeed; but many of us are failing to do that,” said Manyeruke.
“Sometimes legendary artists take it upon themselves to help counsel and guide young artists, much like a big brother or sister. Mentoring is a pretty big deal. It can help these youngsters avoid some of the missteps of their predecessors so they can hopefully have an easier career, but some take advantage of that.”
Manyeruke said some musicians had become famous by riding on other people’s success, which he said was the reason why music in Zimbabwe was not going anywhere.
“There are certain musicians who seek to be popular and once they get what they want, they disappear from the scene,” he said.
When asked about the car he was promised, the gospel singer did not give a clear answer, but rather advised the company to fulfil what they had promised as it (not fulfilling the promise) creates a bad name for them.
“I think that person was not organised. If he was organised it would have succeeded. I say to those who want to help, do your things quietly and surprise the ones you need to help rather than promising what you do not fulfil,” he said.
In Zimbabwe there are several genres like Zimdancehall and Zimhip-hop and some artists are creating beefs and trying to be competitive but Manyeruke considers music as a career.
“I don’t mind much; we are the same. I don’t have competition but what I have is music for the people; for them to be entertained. I urge youths to be united and not to resort to violence.”
Zimbabwe Music Rights Association this year promised musicians royalties, with some confirming they were receiving them, but it was still far from what they expected looking at the economy.
“We are not getting much from royalties because you might receive $40 per month and this depends on the number of songs played on the radio and television and that money does not cater for our needs.”
When asked about his son Guspy Warrior, Manyeruke, said he was happy with him because he listened to him and respected God.
“As a father, I respect what my son does because he is a gift from God. Tiri tese mumunda wemagitare asi mbewu dzakasiyana [We are both cultivating the same field, just that the crops are different] and there is nothing wrong with that.”