Blantyre-based saxophonist Emmanuel Gonthako on Thursday returned to the stage after a long time performing at the Sounds of Malawi Acoustic Session at Jacaranda Cultural Centre (JCC).
His performance at the Sounds of Malawi Acoustic Session was his debut.
Gonthako said he had been preoccupied with family, work and farming hence his lengthy absence from the state.
“I had just so much on my hands that I could not be that active in music although I did not dump it completely. I am happy to be back on stage after such a long time. I love music and apart from farming, music is also part of me,” Gonthako said after his performance.
He hailed organisers of the Sounds of Malawi Acoustic Session for creating such a platform, saying it is giving musicians a chance to showcase their work and interact with the audience.
Unlike other performances where artists just perform, the Sounds of Malawi Acoustic Session which is hosted by musician Code Sangala, gives a platform to musicians to perform and then interact with the audience through the question-and-answer session.
Several other artists, who have had problems organising their own shows due to resources, have also ended up getting space to perform.
“The support I received tonight had also motivated me. I will come out with more and looking at the setup of this session, I intend to go deeper and utilise the rich culture we have to come up with songs,” Gonthako said.
On the night, Gonthako, with his four-piece band featuring, among others, Anthony Supriano, on percussions and Jew Kapengule on the acoustic guitar, offered some soft sound that saw him not skipping jazz.
Code, who has just released his new album Mizu, described Gonthako as a unique artist who he said had brought something new to the platform.
“We are happy with the progress we have made as Sounds of Malawi Acoustic Session. This is what we wanted when we were starting all this. We have so far featured several artists, some who have been performing in the streets,” Code said.
He added that some of the artists who have graced the Sounds of Malawi Acoustic Session will perform at the Music against Malaria Festival to be held at College of Medicine Complex in Blantyre next Saturday.