Malawi music time
Malawian music time is now. Yeah, country folks, our Malawian music is on the move. It is spreading like bush fire. No one will stop this movement. I say no one in the world will stop Malawian music.
Norwegian Fest The good tidings from Norway this week gives us all the hope and optimism. We are proud of our vibrant artists namely; Faith Mussa, Peter Mawanga, Sam Mjura Mkandawire and Marlyn Chakwera.
These are the artists who for the past year have taken the challenge
of interpreting the digitalised archive recordings from Malawi
Broadcasting Station (MBC). The recordings date back to the 1930’s.
The artists were given the task of coming up with new compositions after drawing inspiration from the recordings.
This unique project could be defined as the best in the sub-region and beyond.
The artists managed to select a few pieces from the digital archive.
The results have been successful as the first song they composed and submitted to Norwegian Festival organisers passed with acclaim.
The Norwegian experience is just another stepping stone to many similar shows around the world for Malawian music.
It must also be noted that this time around, there are a lot of Malawian musicians who are representing the nation with their music in the Diaspora.
In mind come artists such as Cleofas Banda and the four other Malawian artists in China, Nathaniel Chalamanda in UK, Masauko Chipembere, Kondwani Phwandaphwanda and many others in USA, Kid Mkandawire in Denmark, Mbura Chona in Botswana, Moya Malamusi and Gerhard Kubik in Vienna, Austria, Erik Paliani, Chris Kele Chipwaila and many others in South Africa The scenerio is even exciting in Ireland where annually our artists are invited to perform especially during the Independence Day celebrations. The artists do play Malawian music by all defination.
The United Kingdom also offers many opportunities for our artists. The organisers of Lake of Stars Festival (LoS) come to mind in this regard as most of the shows are organised as a pre-LoS showcase.
In Berlin and Hannover, Germany, our Malawian music is finding space too. Not long from now our Malawian music will be broadcast on many radio and Television stations following the numerous cultural exhange programmes put in place now.
How about the recent international exposure of self styled acoustic guitarist and composer Agorroso in Europe? The feedback speaks volumes.
We have urgued on this column that we do not need to spend our energy on defining Malawian music. That time is gone. This is the time to create a sound out of the over two hundred traditonal dance culture we have in the country.
There have been arguments that we are wasting time with Nigerian sound and other music styles. I do agree but we need to move on as artists.
We need also not to put barriers on creativity. Let our budding and upcoming artists explore. Let the old guards maintain their identity.
Let us who play ancient music continue with our heritage. Let no onerestrict us from moving ahead with our Malawian music in its diversity.
Forget the definition of our music style as we are richly blessed with thousand music styles and types from our unexploited cultural reservoir.
I listened with keen interest the public debate on the sale of Malawi
Savings Bank (MSB). Yeah, country folks, the panelists were very articulate and the “few” public in attendence also contributed.
I listened with keen interest. I reserve my comment as of now. Not that my lips are sewn with needles of silence. No. But time will tell. Posterity will judge us. Yeah, our grand, grand children will hold us hostage for our decisions. Open your eyes!
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