The curse of having a hit-song in Zimbabwe

Music just like any other profession is an avenue that opens floodgates of opportunities and better career prospects to hard workers. One of the yardsticks that is used to measure hard-workers in the music industry is the capability of artists to have hit-songs that lock the streets, congest the airplay and bring the social media and online music platforms to a halt.

By Argus Mepo

In Zimbabwe we have many musical heroes and heroines who have been making both good songs and hit-songs as well, the likes of Jah Prayzah, Winky D, Ammara Brown, Tamy Moyo, Nutty O, Seh Calaz, Freeman, Killer T, Ex Q, Poptain, the list is endless.

What pains me the most is that producing a hitsong in Zimbabwe is indeed a curse, it brings unexpected calamities to the artists rather than material or monetary value.

In other countries even our neighbouring South Africa and the world over, one hitsong like Hello Mwari, Safe, Juzi or Kure is enough to change your life, that is buying a mansion and living a luxurious life in general.

Back in our motherland, a hitsong will get you famous but without any tangible assets. To make matters worse, such artists will be used as case studies to prove that music is not a viable career prospect and to discourage other potential great musicians who also want to venture into music.

Also associated with this fame is also limelight are other unruly traits which are offsprings of fame. History has a number of successful artists who became big headed during the prime days of their music careers but doom followed in the aftermath. They failed to acquire assets and other developments because the status of the economy does not permit them to do so yet they are perceived as failures.

Hitmakers in Zimbabwe in the contemporary times have also been vulnerable to culture vultures (mbingas). These culture vultures are fully aware of the nature of the music industry and they trap these hitmakers with incentives and stipends, use, and in some cases abuse them in order to gain influence, following and popularity.

Some artists who once did wonders are labelled as one-hit wonders or opportunists, but thats not always the case. The music industry is not inspiring and highly rewarding to hitmakers. After having a hit-song you will come to terms with reality as such, some of the artists have opted for other hustles apart from music.


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