The long awaited three-day Sand Music Festival, pegged at K60 million, kicks off today at Kabumba Hotel in Salima with several acts, both local and international, set to take to the stage.
This is the ninth edition of the festival which is taking place at Kabumba for the first time, having been previously taking place at Sunbird Livingstonia in the same district.
The venue last year hosted Lake of Stars Festival.
Impakt Events Director, Lucius Banda, said they have come a long way to hit ninth edition.
“Next year we will be talking about 10th edition which is not that easy. We started on a smaller note but now we are a big festival and this is why we have always strived to bring out the best as a Malawian festival which is also affordable,” Banda said.
The festival has, over the years, failed to maintain dates by moving from August to September to October and now in November where it has ended up clashing with Tumaini.
Banda said the 2019 festival is a musical buffet where people will get to choose what they want to sample.
“This year we are even happier because we have a reggae legend King Sounds, who is here for the first time. This is no mean achievement and next year, we are thinking of bringing Eric Donaldson or Burning Spear,” he said.
King Sounds was expected to jet into the country yesterday afternoon ahead of the festival.
The legend, who said on Monday that he was ready for Malawi and that he has music for both the young and the old, arrived in South Africa last weekend where he has been rehearsing with All Nations Band.
The band, from South Africa, has been backing many Jamaican artists who have performed in the country.
“I have never been to Malawi but I have been to Zimbabwe and met some Malawians. I am excited to perform in Malawi,” King Sounds said.
Banda said over the nine years they have been holding the festival, they have failed to make profits.
“Every year we end up making loses but our win is entertaining people. Today, you have people talking about the festival because of the way we execute it. The festival has turned into a mother festival,” he said.
Banda added that of the K60 million required to run the festival, they have covered K49 million and that they are hopeful of squaring off the rest by the time the fiesta kicks off.
He said artists were ready and that apart from King Sounds, Raphael from Germany and artists from Sierra Leone arrived on Wednesday with several others expected to arrive tomorrow.
“We have tightened security to make sure that patrons and their property are protected,” Banda said.
Meanwhile, business people are also looking forward to the festival which allows them to make a killing.
Other international acts performing at the festival this year include M.I.C, Future K and Rox-P alongside DJ Jesse, South Africa’s Reggae Sisters and Zimbabwean DJ Stavo, Botswana’s Vee Mampeezy and Zambia’s B1.
Several local acts, apart from Banda himself, are also expected to star at the festival.