Renowned Chimurenga music maestro Thomas Mapfumo, says the song Dzoka Uyamwe is his favourite track by the late Oliver Mtukudzi.
By Moses Chibaya
Mtukudzi was conferred the national hero status and will be buried today at his rural home in Madziwa, Bindura.
Speaking in an interview with The Standard Style, Mapfumo said he liked most of Tuku’s songs, but Dzoka Uyamwe was his favourite.
Dzoka Uyamwe was a hit off Mtukudzi’s 1999 album titled Tuku Music.
Mapfumo, who is Tuku’s long- time friend, said he and the late musician in most cases released albums at the same time.
“I have many songs that I like that Mtukudzi sang. We released some albums during the same year, but Tuku’s songs were more popular with Zimbabweans,” Mapfumo said.
“My favourite song is Dzoka Uyamwe.”
Some of the songs that are on the album include Rirongere, Todii, Mabasa, Mai Varamba, Tsika Dzedu, Tapindwa Nei, Wake Up and Ndima Ndapedza.
During the same year, Mapfumo, who was awarded an Honorary Master’s degree in recognition of his advocacy for freedom by the University of Zimbabwe in 1999 and also an Honorary Doctorate degree to recognise his activism by Ohio University at Athens in 2001, also released his album titled Chimurenga ’98.
The album includes songs like Chigwaya, Ndiyani Waparadza Musha, Tinofara, Titambire, Usatambe Nenyoka, Wandiita Muroyi, Chimurenga, Munongotukana, Chikonzero, Ndave Kuenda, Set The People Free and Shumba Dzenhabvu.
“The inspiration of that song [Dzoka Uyamwe] came after realising that a lot of people in the urban areas were suffering and yet they have rural homes where they could actually live better. And it’s a song that I was trying to inspire people to go back to their roots,” Tuku commented on Dzoka Uyamwe in a book by Jennifer W Kyker on Tuku’s life titled Oliver Mtukudzi: Living Tuku Music in Zimbabwe.
“And even if they don’t have to work, but if they remember their roots, they will always have something to do. ‘Cause it’s their homes, it’s where they are supposed to be.”
Mapfumo, who in 1980 shared the stage with Bob Marley and the Wailers to celebrate Zimbabwe’s Independence, said he wished there could be some from the current crop of musicians that could carry on from where Tuku left off.
“We have lost someone who was the epitome of the Zimbabwean culture. I wish among the current youth we will have some who will follow Oliver’s footsteps,” Mapfumo said.
Local music lovers have for long pointed out that it is the album Tuku Music that marked Tuku’s recognition on the international stage.
By that time Tuku was under the tuteelage of manager Debbie Metcalfe.