Bongani Ndlovu, Showbiz Correspondent
FORMER Umdumo weSizwe vocalist Nkululeko “Khuliyo” Nkala at the weekend showed fellow musicians how to put together a remarkable and interactive show as he launched his solo career after an eight-year hiatus from the stage.
Dubbed Amaphupho Amasha, the nine-track Afro Jazz album boasts of songs with Jazz muso Jeys Marabini and local kwaito musician Mjox. Most songs are about love, nation building and folktales.
The album features tracks Dii Phansi, Nyamayembongolo, Bhayiskhoro by Umdumo weSizwe, Hamba Labahambayo featuring Mjox, Beautiful Zimbabwe, Amaphupho Amatsha, Umvundla lonteletsha with Jeys Marabini, Smomondiya and BIFA anthem.
There was never a dull moment at the show as it was a mixture of theatre, dance and modelling backed by local jazz group, Outfit Band. Vocalists on the night were Busani Nkomo from Umdumo weSizwe, Melaine Moyo and Future Dube of director of Khaya Arts.
Marabini was a marvel to watch when he took to the stage with Khuliyo. Not to be outdone was Sandra Ndebele who jumped onto stage and gave the high octane show as she danced to the song, Lizo jaiva kuzekuse.
Khaya Arts danced to Smomondiya with two dancers doing the salsa. Recently crowned Miss Africa Zimbabwe models were the icing on the cake as they paraded on stage. Multi-award-winning rapper Cal_Vin alongside local rapper Asaph and Babongile Sikhonjwa made impromptu appearances on stage.
Asaph grabbed the opportunity to bring the house down with his lyrical prowess, while Cal_Vin showed people why he was a multi-award-winning artiste.
Sikhonjwa sang a rendition of Bhundu Boys’ track Simbimbino that he translated into Ndebele that left most in the crowd in stitches.
Many who know Khuliyo may have doubted his capability of pulling off such a show, let alone sing. Some thought the whole thing of him launching a music career was a big joke but all and sundry were pleasantly surprised with the way he worked the stage.
Khuliyo said: “The idea of getting back into music was to manage some artistes and compose lyrics for them after realising that most of them were failing to come up with catchy songs that can be hits.
“After identifying some artistes I felt I could work with, they flatly refused to work with me. I wasn’t offended or discouraged and actually decided to lead by example by recording my own album.”
Asked if his album was a one off production, Khuliyo said:
“This isn’t a once off thing as I’ve seven more tracks that I’ve stocked for my next album. For now, people should expect three music videos which will be produced by local producer.”