Tuku: Sam commemorations moment of celebration

Oliver Mtukudzi and late son, Sam

Oliver Mtukudzi and late son, Sam

OLIVER Mtukudzi says commemorations for his late son, Sam, slated for Friday at the Pakare Paye Arts Centre are meant to be a moment of celebration.

“Friday, March 18, is a time of celebrating the life of Sam Mtukudzi and the achievements he had in his 10 years in the music industry and the 21 years we had with him,” said Tuku.

“The time of sadness has passed now and we just want to celebrate and have a great time on this day whilst reflecting on his life.”

When people listen to Sam Mtukudzi’s album, ‘Cheziya’ which was released posthumously in 2010, they always say the nation was robbed of a future global icon. But if one were to listen to his brand new 14-track album, ‘Misiirwa’, no words can describe the feeling that the emotion provoking lyrics and music stir up in the heart. The young lad was indeed harbouring the genes of a legend.

All 14 tracks show that the late Sam Mtukudzi was miles ahead of many hotshots in the music scene and even the budding ones.

His rich, robust musicality is well exuded in the scintillating and inimitable arrangements that will leave many musicians reconsidering whether to continue with the trade or find another career.

What is most amazing about the project is that it is very simple overall, not too many jacks, leaks, or amazing adlibs, but when you listen to the tracks, you are taken into another world. Zimbo Jam managed to chat with father of the late guru, Oliver Mtukudzi who said the album which will be released at Sam’s commemorations is an emotional masterpiece. The commemoration show will feature artists Jah Prayzah, Alick Macheso and Sulumani Chimbetu. But, the main set is focused around Gary Tight and Ashton.

“Most of the tracks are emotional. I wish I could get into his brain and find out what he was thinking about when he wrote the tracks,” said Tuku.  “But all is good, those emotions I can safely say, bring out who he was, you can feel him in each track and even if you ask those who worked with him, they can testify that this project resembles who Sam was.”

On why it took him six years to release the project, Tuku said, “I think my heart and mind have now allowed me to work on his productions because I could not work on the songs the year he died, I just couldn’t,” said Dr. Mtukudzi.

“I was dealing with emotions of losing my son and the songs he recorded are very emotional. It was not an easy project to work on. I believe it was also in God’s plan to say in the sixth year we will celebrate him.”

Sam shows a prophetic side in him within the project on a song called ‘Rwendo Rwangu’. When you listen to it, it’s scary in that he was more or less predicting what was coming in the near future and yet at the same time it shows the brilliance of his artistry as it is just one simple sentence repeated in five minutes but very catchy and mind boggling.

“When I found the track Rwendo Rwangu, it was in a folder of its own. Already I knew it was special. When I played it, I was really moved, it was more like a prophecy,” revealed Tuku.

“As I continued scrolling through the files that contained his music, I knew I was going to be surprised, I knew I was going to be wowed by the arrangements and creativity because that was Sam’s nature. “When I first saw him play, he was nine years old and he was playing his own compositions. So I knew in this bag there were a number of surprises.”

Tuku also spoke about a song he collaborated with Sam.  “Sam and I collaborated on a track tilted, ‘Ichakwana Nguva’. This is a song that we always rehearsed together and I really enjoyed it. So when I laid my vocals he didn’t know, for it was meant to be a surprise. However, when he dropped the album Cheziya, I became the surprised one as he didn’t put the track on the album. So I then asked him why the track was not on the album Cheziya and his response was that it had nothing to do with Cheziya.”

Samanyanga also revealed that after Misiirwa there will be another album from Sam. “There’ll be a follow up to Misiirwa as we felt putting all 25 tracks that he had recorded on one album would not be a good idea.

“I’m happy that he left us something to carry on with his legacy. If he was not a hardworking person, he’d have died and left us nothing.

When someone leaves behind 25 tracks it shows that he was focused and worked for the future. It’s a beautiful album, an album full of memories,” said Tuku. – ZimboJam

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