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Poor turnout at Paul Banda’s launch

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Veteran singer and guitarist Paul Banda anticipated nothing but a good crowd during the launch of his first ever DVD The Best of Sir Paul Banda at BAT ground in Blantyre on Sunday but it was not to be.

The show received a poor audience which was not fit for Paul’s mature and rich sound.

Paul first launched the DVD in Lilongwe last month before taking it to Balaka Stadium on Saturday and then Blantyre on Sunday.

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The launch was expected to start around 11am but there was no sign of a show until late in the afternoon.

The organisers failed their duty to source a stage for performances and with time running out they decided to use a lorry for a stage which had little space and restricted the artists from dancing.

With the lorry being used for the stage, it looked as if this was a road show.

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Paul, who has moved a long and winding road in his music career to be where he is today, could not hide his disappointment with the way the show was organised before he later jumped on stage.

Sitting in a car with his already tuned guitar as he waited to jump on stage, Paul still smiled as the smaller audience enjoyed the performances from the other acts.

“I am disappointed with the way things were organised. Actually it all started in Balaka on Saturday where the show was also disorganised and we planted the stage late which was also the case here,” said Paul.

He apologised to the people for not putting up a good show adding that they have now learnt lessons and were hoping to improve in the incoming shows.

“People deserved the best from us, there were a lot of things which we didn’t do right and surely this kept others away so I apologise,” said Paul.

He then thanked those who braved the cold weather and be part of the show.

Paul also hailed musicians who have supported him throughout the launches.

“So many musicians supported me starting from Lilongwe through to Balaka and then Blantyre I thank them for their support. I also would like to thank my brother Lucius for his support and again postponing his show just to accommodate my show,” said the old-timer.

Lucius popularly known as Soldier cancelled his show at Ozone Refreshment Centre in Blantyre at the eleventh hour as it was clashing with his brother’s concert.

Some quarters however, said the show suffered a setback because of the poor selection of the venue and that there were other events on the same day.

“To me I feel the venue was not convenient especially for Paul’s audience. Again people were still divided with his brother Lucius’ show which was cancelled but it was too late,” said Bright Tembo.

Paul rekindled memories of his past exploits during the show offering several songs from his many albums.

There were also performances from San B, Symon Kamlaka, Kaka and Rod Valamanja among others while the other artists billed to perform including Joseph Nkasa were not available.

People were paying K2,500 on entry during the show and were also receiving a DVD.

The DVD was produced by Anthu Ambiri Records led by Zachariah Jezzman and has Paul’s songs from his previous albums as well as interview on his life in music.

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