Mkhululi Ncube, Showbiz Reporter
NKAYI is slowly, but indeed registering growth in rhumba music as a number of artistes from the area are emerging. One such artiste is Ndabitshekile who leads Nkayi Super Sounds.
With three albums to his name, the latest having been released three weeks ago, Ndabitshekile is on the right track to lead the challenge of the dominance of Plumtree, Kezi and Tsholotsho as the home ground of the popular beat.
The musician has also brought his own swagger and flashes of bling which is hardly associated with the genre.
The South Africa-based artiste said there are a number of musicians from Nkayi but most of them are struggling to break through as music demands huge finances.
“Nkayi has largely remained behind compared to other areas in terms of music growth and that is what I’m trying to change,” said Ndabitshekile.
The Eze Blue Nation leader, as his band is popularly known, says his journey in the music industry is being made easy due to a close relationship with established artistes like Obert Mvundla and Martin Sibanda of Ndolwane Super Sounds, among others.
Ndabitshekile said his debut album, Xenophobia (2017) and Ogweja (2019), did not do well in the market.
He, however, seems to have done something right with Isono Seqiniso as it is opening doors for him.
“The CD sales have been very pleasing. Previously, most support had been coming from areas like Plumtree and Tsholotsho but now people from Nkayi are also coming on board which is quite encouraging. On this album, I worked with big guys; bassists Obert Mvundla and Brema from Insimbi Zezhwane and TK. This helped me come up with a polished album and rhumba fans have fallen in love with it,” said Ndabitshekile.
The album has hard-hitting tracks, Vumizono, Isono Seqiniso, Lifuze Bani, Angeke Ngitshele Umuntu, Usazokubona and Abohlonishwe.
The musician, who hails from Gambakalele area in Nkayi, said initially he wanted to sing maskandi music but was advised to venture into rhumba as it was an untapped genre in Nkayi.
To ensure that his music career does not die, the artiste does other jobs in South Africa to boost his income.
“Music production requires a lot of money and without sponsors, it becomes difficult to produce quality stuff,” said Ndabitshekile.
While he has gained popularity in South Africa, the artiste said he still has the challenge to build his name back home. – @themkhust