By sam banda jnr:
Veteran musician Wyndham Chechamba used to hold live performances frequently in the past but it is no longer the same this time.
The musician still has the energy to hold live performances but he does not have enough in his pocket to organise more shows.
The old-timer however, has been active holding some special classical outings and also continues to train up and coming musicians through his Chechamba Music School.
With inadequate resources, Chechamba has failed to continue the musical teachings at his residence in Chilomoni Township but offers lessons through Music Club which is spearheaded by Francis Mijiga.
But an opportunity has come out for him to show the best of his music as he invades Jacaranda Cultural Centre (JCC) in Blantyre today debuting at the Sounds of Malawi Acoustic Session.
Chechamba comes to the session barely a week after the venue last Thursday welcomed the sounds of another veteran player Patrick Simakweli.
JCC Director Luc Deschamps said Wednesday, they are happy to bring the sounds of Chechamba, another great Malawian artist.
“Last Thursday the audience had a perfect night with Patrick Simakweli, there were a lot of lessons learnt and people had a chance to learn more about his music. This time we have Chechamba another amazing artist. This is all about giving Malawi music the limelight,” Deschamps said.
Chechamba said recently that he has more gas in his tank and would love to take people through a journey of classical music but also some of the songs he used to perform in his youth.
The artist has also worked with one of the urban artists Bucci in the song ‘Fever’.
“I am open to collaborate with up and coming artists. We are aging and we need to pass on this knowledge,” Chechamba said.
Chechamba started singing in 1939 at the age five.
He played in a drum band at Henry Henderson Institute (HHI) in Blantyre.
He joined Kings African Rifles in 1952 playing the saxophone and then other instruments as well after being promoted.
“Music came natural for me in the War Memorial Military Band I played during school years,” he said.
In 1968, after travelling to Zambia, he led MBC Band and recorded an album titled Kokoliko.
Chechamba went on to train some musicians including
Maria Chidzanja Nkhoma, John Longwe who went to play with Hugh Masekela and Isaac Nkukupa.
He prides in pioneering traditional music with Kudya Resident Band in 1974.
Apart from Simakweli, the other veteran artists who have already performed at the Sounds of Malawi Acoustic Session include Waliko Makhala and Snowden Ibbu.
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