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I will come back—Kenyatta Hill

Kenyatta Hill, son to legendary reggae maestro Joseph Hill, has described Malawi as a lovely country and that it is indeed the Warm Heart of Africa.

Kenyatta, who promised to come back, said he was stunned with the warm welcome he was given on his arrival at Chileka Airport in Blantyre on Wednesday.

He also hailed people for patronising the two concerts at Mibawa Multipurpose Hall in Blantyre on Friday and Civo Stadium in Lilongwe on Saturday.

“This is truly the Warm Heart of Africa. I am short of words on how to describe Malawi. The vibe from the people during the shows was just great and they kept me lively throughout,” he said.

Kenyatta also revealed that he performed with the original members of Culture – Albert Walker and Telford Nelson—for the first time after a long time.

“It’s been sometime since I performed with them and Malawi surely experienced something special and great. This is just the beginning and I would like to come back,” Kenyatta said.

Kenyatta visited Salima on Sunday to see Lake Malawi and, according to Lucius Banda, who brought him through his Impakt Sounds, he was impressed.

While some quarters doubted his capability, saying he was nowhere near his father, Kenyatta proved them otherwise and showed potential.

He has a powerful hoarse voice just like his father and was energetic on stage.

At Mibawa, which attracted a huge audience, Kenyatta jumped on stage at midnight soon after Anthony Makondetsa and the Black Missionaries had warmed the stage.

His entry attracted cheers from the audience and he went on to offer a non-stop act and restricted himself to playing his father’s songs as part of honouring him.

“I surely had to do my father’s music just to show how great he was and I am happy people loved it throughout,” Kenyatta said.

There were some technical glitches earlier at Mibawa but this did not put him off as he went on and finished his set around 3am.

Performing with a South African band, there also seemed to be some gaps which was an indication that they did not have rehearsals.

But despite all this, Kenyatta, as lead singer, made sure the gaps were not felt.

Walker and Telford, who have been in music for over 40 years said they would continue to work with Kenyatta as long as they were alive.

“We are trying to push Kenyatta to continue his father’s work. It was exciting performing in Malawi and hope to come back for more shows,” said the veterans, who were a marvel to watch the backing vocals although with age their voices are draining off.

Walker and Telford stood out on backing vocals as Kenyatta led the strings and at times they danced showing their moves.

“We just want to appeal to upcoming artists; take time when doing your music, learn from the veterans and, most of all, work hard,” Telford said.

At Civo, people braved a cold night to enjoy the reggae vibes which saw Kenyatta jumping on stage at 1am and coming off stage around 3:30am.

There were however prolonged sound checks which disappointed fans.

At some point there was also a fire scare when Kenyatta was performing but it was controlled before the dreadlocked Jamaican artist came back on stage.

Lucius apologised for some hiccups.

“We admit there were some challenges which we need to improve on but we are still learning. But all in all people enjoyed and Kenyatta killed it. As Impakt we are making progress and helping in promoting tourism,” he said.

Lulu said he has watched several international acts but he described Kenyatta as talented and that he was no different from his father.

Random interviews with fans also indicated they were impressed with Kenyatta’s performance.

The curtainraisers at Civo Stadium included Soul Raiders, Skeffa Chimoto and Real Sounds, Sam Smak and Black Missionaries.

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