The Sunday News
Rumbidzai Mhlanga, Sunday Life
A storm is brewing between Bulawayo artistes and local promoters with the former accusing the latter of side-lining them.
In separate interviews, local artistes complained that priority was being given to artistes from outside the city at their expense.
Majahawodwa “Jeys Marabini” Ndlovu said local promoters were giving preferential treatment to artistes from other places when there was so abundant talent in Bulawayo that need to be tapped or promoted.
“They say charity begins at home, someone cannot choose to give money to people from outside Bulawayo when there are a lot of young artistes who need that support for them to rise to fame. I personally wouldn’t give money to a total stranger before I give my family first, I would make sure my family has enough of the exact thing I’m about to give someone else,” he added.
He said promoters should know that promoting means beginning with something from the grassroots.
“Promoting according to local artistes means that a promoter should be someone who has love and passion for the locals. There are many local artistes who lack motivation, due to lack of support since promoters want to deal with those other town artistes who are already established,” said Marabini.
This has however, seen local artistes relocating to other parts of the country, particularly the capital city Harare which seems to have greener pastures for the music industry.
“Our artistes therefore choose to go and pursue their dreams in Harare because it is where they gain more recognition of which is it killing the art industry in Bulawayo and the city is painted as not having talent or artistes altogether,” added Marabini.
Another local artiste Asaph shared the same sentiments with Marabini stating that he has been asking himself the same questions as to why Bulawayo shows have been flooded by outside artistes.
“I’ve been asking myself why we are not getting as many shows in our city as the ones we get outside the city, I was wondering if it was a question of promoters not believing in us or is it because we will not bring enough crowd to them back their money,” queried Asaph.
Local artistes feel it would have been encouraging for them when promoters could tell them on areas they should improve so that they should be given fair recognition like other artistes outside the city.
“I personally have scooped a couple of awards in the country including Bulawayo Arts Awards, three Zimbabwe Hip-hop awards only to mention a few, I wonder why they still feel we are not good enough,” moaned Asaph.