IN THE GROOVE: BY FRED ZINDI
In Harare’s northern suburbs of Mabvuku, Greendale and Mandara, a man with a mission has arisen. He is known as Fake Gaffa (real name, Brighton Mavura)by those who have been observing his behaviour lately. He has been seen copying the words, facial expressions, movements and actions of the “real” Gaffa, Winky D, aka Wallace Chirumiko.
If you think that your favourite celebrity, Winky D, is one in a million whose looks belong to him alone, then you are mistaken. Well, I hate to break it to you, but to think that Winky D has a unique look and style is probably not the case.
The famous Winky D now has an almost famous doppelgänger. He has one look-alike whom I saw taking a stroll on one of the streets in Mandara. I had never seen it before, but now I can’t unsee it! At first glance, I thought that was the real Gaffa and as the Real Gaffais known to me, I stopped my car in wonder asking myself “What the hell is the Gaffa doing walking barefoot in my hood? Has he gone crazy? Is it a publicity stunt?” As I got closer to the man, I noticed that he wasn’t the real thing although dressed just like him, walked like him and had Winky D’s facial expressions. He was also wearing a long, bandana head-wrap to manage the dreadlocks on his head.
He was not surprised when I stopped him. I apologised to him and told him that I had mistaken him for Winky D.
In response he said that I was not the only one who expressed that view and he told me that he was ‘honoured’ to be likened to the real Gaffa..
The fake Gaffa has already taken advantage of the situation and is already behaving like a superstar.
There are stories of the Fake Gaffa being mobbed by fans in Mabvuku where he often goes to visit a friend. Someone who had seen him entering his friend’s house told everyone in surrounding areas that he had seen Winky D going into the house. People gathered around that house and waited for him to come out. While leaving his friend’s house,the Fake Gaffa was mobbed by over-excited “fans” some of whom wanted to take photos with him while others wanted him to sign autographs.
The last time I had seen a scenario like this in real life was when Jah Prayzah came to the University of Zimbabwe and his fans, especially girls, were all over him some with cellphone cameras to have selfies taken with him and others with pens and pieces of paper asking him to sign autographs.
I thought the public, especially those who, like me, had never met the Fake Gaffa before, would be fascinated by this.
I asked him for a short interview, and he obliged. His real name is Brighton Mavura.
Mavura (born on December 11, 1994) is a 27-year-old musician who has been understudying Winky D for many years. He says: “Anything Winky D can do, I can do it better! I am just waiting for Zimbabwe to see me in action änd the people will testify to my claims”.
What a challenge! Sometimes imitation is flattering, but often it’s just annoying — more about that later.
Brighton went to primary school at Mudzi and completed his secondary education at Kotwe High near Mutoko, a school which is known for being active in music thanks to deputy head, Peter Chikoti.
Mavura developed his musical skills there and watched the Gaffa’s performances very closely from there.
When he came to Harare, people often told him that he looked just like his idol, Winky D. This is when he started dressing up like the real Gaffa and the name Fake Gaffa came about.
On one of his visits to Mbare, even SehCalaz also mistakenly thought that it was Winky D who had come to visit him. They even posed for a photograph together and the picture went viral on social media platforms.
Mavura decided he should exploit this Fake Gaffa situation by giving the real Gaffa some competition.
He negotiated with SehCalaz’s Yala Nation Studios for the recording of three songs which he had penned over the years titled Baby Tapindirana, Chishuwo and Fake Gaffa.
Mavura was bold enough to call Jonathan Banda, Winky D’s manager to see if he could put him in Winky D’s camp and was told to wait until the Covid-19 pandemic is over so that the two artistes can be on stage together and the crowd will see who is the better of the two.Mavura says that he has never met Jonathan Banda either but would like a one-on-one meeting with him soon to discuss the possibilities of management.
Mavura said that Winky D has always been an inspiration to him although he is still to meet him in person. Other artistes who have inspired him include Seh Calaz, the late Soul Jah Love, Killer T, Tocky Vibes and Enzo Ishall.
Talking about Enzo Ishall, I asked Mavura what he thought about Enzo Ishall’s announcement that he had decided to quit the music industry. This was Mavura’s response: “Enzo has no right to quit music. Some of us are dying to get into it and get recognition and he decides to quit. That is unfair. Is it because of the effects of Covid-19 pandemic? That young man is an inspiration to all of us. He was also lucky to have met two able sponsors. Although the sponsors have left him and things maybe a bit difficult for him now,he should not quit music We have all looked up to him to guide us in the right direction as far as music is concerned. His quitting music will be a great loss to the nation and to the rest of the world.”
Enzo has not been straight-forward with the reasons why he decided to quit music. However, speculation is rife about why Enzo Ishall (real name: Kudzanai Stephen Mamhare) decided to quit music. Some say that his father, Mr Mamhare did not like what his son had become as he was watching what was appearing in the press on him so closely, especially on issues to do with his married life and sex life. For a traditional father, exposing ones’s sexual life to the public was a bit too much. It is rumoured that his father summoned him and ordered him to quit music with immediate effect. He obeyed as he did not want any rift between himself and his parents.
Enzo Ishall is the guy who gave us hits such as Kanjiva, Magate, Smart Inotangira Kutsoka, Chimuti, Uri Kutsvireiko and Vakamhanya Makarimwa within a short period of time. He is capable of giving us more.
Despite all this, I have a sneaky feeling that Enzo Ishall will come back to us again in the near future with some new releases which will undoubtedly become monster hits.
But that is a digression. Today we are talking about the Fake Gaffa and his musical ambitions.
I had the opportunity to listen to the three tunes, which the Fake Gaffa had recorded. Not only are the songs promising to be smash hits, but he also sounds like Winky D. I was blown away out of the water.
I have since advised the Fake Gaffa to approach music promoters like DJ Fantan and Levels at Chillspot Records and Passion Java at Passion Java Records or even Teemak Promotions whom I am told are anxious to promote young talent.
After all, this is the route which Enzo Ishall took and made a success of it. If these promoters take on this fresh talent, they will no doubt be in control of things instead of trying to do deals with already established artistes.
Over the years, several Zimdancehall artistes have made attempts to outdo the real Big Man, Winky D, and steal the limelight from him, but all in vain. Many thought that they would rise to the challenge, but Winky D has remained cool, calm and collected when it comes to his approach to music. We will be watching how far the Fake Gaffa will go with this Winky D challenge.
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