Classical Spare beauty and soul

Spare beauty and soul

This man offers nothing superfluous. He just stands centre stage, with his microphone and red guitar, and plays – and that is performance enough. His audience sits breathlessly still, mesmerised, aside from the one or two who can’t stop themselves from tapping out a rhythm with one or other part of their bodies.

He is an unassuming character, who lets his soulful music talk, and appears quietly humbled by the resultant effusive applause. Known particularly for the mastery of his strings, his use of voice is akin to his skill on guitar.Creating dynamic layers of interest within the comfort of repetition, voice and strings complement one another with remarkable harmony. Most of his songs are sung in Shona; his repertoire providing emotional and geographical snapshots from his life.

He began to entice last night’s audience with the familiarity of Mai Rugare, the ‘Goddess of Fortune’. The lyrical This is for you was followed by Ndine – It’s you, a rhythmically upbeat love song, which lifted an already buoyant mood. He sang of ‘miracles that take place’ in Zvinashamisa, and of celebrating the harvest with Sweet Pumpkins – the combination of rhythmic and musical influences, from jazz to West African, creating a diverse and interesting sound vocabulary.

It’s the sort of music that could appropriately equally be found around a campfire, or filling a thousand-seater auditorium.
His sense of humour came to the fore as he ‘fades out’ his last song, and was obviously moved by the audience’s audible response to his encore, with his enjoyment increasing visibly as he relaxed towards the end of the performance.

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