Hangout Music Festival came out for its second edition over the weekend at Sunbird Livingstonia in Salima District where it attracted an improved audience, particularly on the second day compared to its first edition.
Organisers admitted that they never anticipated such an audience during this time that the world is also battling Covid-19 pandemic.
“Frankly speaking, people have surprised us. This audience is times three than last year’s edition. We are grateful for the support. For us to grow, we need this support and we will keep on improving,” one of the members of the organising team, Wachipeta Mkandawire, said.
However, despite scoring a plus on the improved audience on the second day which turned out to be the main day, the organisation still leaves a lot to be desired for a festival worth its name.
There was a lapse in the whole organisation and no wonder some of the acts on the line-up did not show up
The festival might still be in its infancy but organisers were supposed to improve in a number of areas, especially being the second edition.
Unlike last year when they only had local acts, this year the festival had an international act – South Africa’s Mr Brown, who disappointed the audience as he did not offer a live band act.
Once again, there was little to see from Mr Brown on the night. He is a one hit artist famed for ‘Rain on Me’, the only song that the audience sang along to and he had to perform it for the second time before bowing out.
Organisers did not come out clear as to how much they paid the South African musician, who performed for less than 45 minutes with less than five songs.
“Malawi muli bwanji. Thank you very much for your support,” the artist, who performed some songs done by other artists, said.
Mr Brown, who was expected to leave Sunday thanked Janta and organisers for making it possible for him to perform at the festival for the first time.
His set, which included a DJ on the deck, came after the audience had enjoyed a live performance from Lulu and Mathumela Band.
Lulu, as usual featuring players such as Dan Sibale on saxophone, did his best dishing out a collection of his songs before paving way for Mr Brown.
“Mr Brown’s performance with a DJ could have come earlier, we love performances with live band and for me Lulu and Black Missionaries did well and gave us their best. I am not a fan of playing with CDs so for me Mr Brown turned out to be Mr Black for me,” Gilbert Soko, who travelled all the way from Blantyre, said.
Earlier, the audience also sampled performances from Steve Spesho, Dave, Six Solid Band which also backed a number of artists including Nepman, Dave, Mwanache, Positive Yut and Janta.
Janta, a musician and producer who has been trending following his fall out with his wife, performed the song ‘Chisoni’ as well as ‘Divorce’ among others.
He kept on telling the audience that he was single referring to his fall out with his wife during the festival.
“I am so thankful for your support and I don’t take it for granted,” Janta said.
There was another fine moment during Janta’s performance when he invited on stage dancehall star King Chambiecco and Mwanache and so they collaborated, giving the audience something fresh.
Symon and Kendall were billed to perform at the festival but they did not on Saturday, with only Symon making himself available.
He apologised to the audience that his colleague would not make it and took it upon himself to perform a few numbers backed by Solid Rocks.
Other artists who starred at the festival which ended on Sunday, include Dan Muyaya.
Black Missionaries, alongside Anthony Makondetsa, were the last to perform on Saturday and went all the way to the early hours of Sunday.
Despite announcing that they would be strict as regards observing Covid-19 pandemic restrictions, only a few people were putting on masks.