By Richard Chirombo:
He had to wade through the sea of commitments, including his association with gospel outfit Sanctuary Music, to drown voices of mockers— who thought he would never have an album— in-the-waters of Nyimbo za Chikondi, an Extended Play (EP) with eight songs.
His name is Minister Ken, real name Ken Mlomba, a member of the eight-member Sanctuary Music group.
Produced by Steve Meleka, Don Foxxy, OBK Records and Chambota Chirwa, the EP is scheduled for release on May 14.
Upon sampling songs such as ‘M’mene Amandikondera’, ‘Munthuyu’, ‘Mundikonda’, ‘Chopanda Malire’, ‘Chikondi pa Mtanda’, ‘Ndimakukonda’, ‘Ngati Ulibe Chikondi’ and ‘Kumwamba’, one appreciates the dominant theme of love.
‘M’mene Amandikondera’, ‘Chikondi pa Mtanda’ and ‘Chopanda Malire’, for example, address the theme of God’s love for mankind while ‘Ndimakukonda’ addresses the issue of love for one another.
‘Kumwamba’, on the other hand, expounds on the vanity of life.
In terms of genres, Nyimbo za Chikondi is a marriage of genres.
The lead single, ‘M’mene Amandikondera’, which is enjoying airplay in radio stations, is a Manganje song complete with African drums. In fact, the sound of bottle tops, being used as shakers, is clear.
Other songs are more contemporary than ‘M’mene Amandikondera’, fusing Afro sounds with soft rock and R&B.
“The inspiration to compose the songs came from personal experiences with God. I am convinced that God loves us so much that his love is beyond our comprehension.
“In fact, I decided to record the EP so that listeners can be inspired to look at life positively in the wake of growing negativity, as evidenced by worsening living conditions through disease, poverty and natural disasters,” he said.
In fact, so determined is Minister Ken to share the message that he has decided to districute the music free-of-charge.
“It is from a heart that says the music should reach out to everyone that I have decided to distribute the album for free. We will have physical CDs, which will be distributed through designated spots in Blantyre.
“Others willing to have the music will be encouraged to download from websites that will be announced through my social media handles on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter,” he said.
Maybe this gesture is in line with the sweet and sacred side of love: God loving people; people loving each other.
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