VENERATED Mbira ensemble and cultural group Maungira Enharira has returned to the studio to record a sixth album that the group hopes to release by year end.
By Simbarashe Manhango (NewsDay)
Besides having starved their fans well for three years since the release of their fifth album in 2011, the group is promising what it has referred to as “spiritual mbira vibes with a cultural background”.
Fronted by versatile mbira player and vocalist Wilfred “Nyamasvisva” Mafrika, the upcoming project is titled Bvunza mutupo.
“This is a deep and huge project that just tells a story about our musical journey and the need for everyone to keep focus on fundamental issues such as identity and cultural values,” said Nyamasvisva.
In an interview with NewsDay he added that things had changed drastically, which was not a surprise to him, but, however, highlighted that their role as leaders would never change.
He said through this album their goal is to raise awareness among socialites to remember values, norms and tradition to avoid being swept away further by other cultures and customs.
Currently being recorded at Shady Studios in the capital, Bvunza mutupo is a nine-track album that comprises tracks such as the title track, Mawunje, Chimhandara Chake, Chakanaka Chakanaka, Ngozi Yemukwasha, Nyamutamba Nemombe and Nhindi Yemago.
With all tracks penned by Nyamasvisva, some of the songs on this album are already being sampled during the group’s live shows at Lion King every Thursday and also at the Book Café on Fridays.
“We want people to get used to the vibe and familiarise themselves with the music, such that after the release we should then be concentrating on live shows and tours only,” added Mafrika.
In August Mawungira Enharira will be heading to Sweden for a tour and cultural exchange programme that will last two weeks.This will see them sharing the stage with selected groups from other countries that will also be participating during the exchange initiative.
He added that during this tour they were expecting to exchange ideas with other countries in terms of how to keep alive this genre that could face extinction if not conserved, and also engage in mbira tutorials where they will be teaching the making and playing of the mbira.
“A couple of shows are also lined up for us and we are anticipating to benefit a lot from this programme since it is also vital considering the upcoming release of our album,” said Mafrika.
Meanwhile, the group is also on the brink of unveilling a mbira cultural centre which is aimed at the teaching and preservation of the mbira. The centre will also involve professional academic tutorials and a curriculum covering mbira music training.