Malawian Music has no identity
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Malawian musician veteran, Lucious Banda, and up coming hip-hop artist, Young Kay, have described the trends in the Malawian music positive although acknowledging that the country fails to have a music identity.
The artists monitored on a one hour live roundtable talk programme hosted by Brian Banda on the reading FM stations, Capital FM said that while Malawian artists have managed to gain international exposure it was too difficult to come up with a Malawian music identity. “It is very impossible to bring a wholly Malawian genre of music and fusion has been the final option,” said Banda who is currently working on his new fifteent track album ‘15-15’ which marks his fifteenth year in the Malawian music circles.
Banda said Malawian musicians have to learn from other courtiers like Zambia where artists have managed to successfully fuse local genres with international music and are currently fareing well on the international music scene.
Up and coming musician, Young Kay, whose music targets the urban youth said that while it was difficult to come up with a fully Malawian blend of music, the current songs that are being produced and performed by Malawian artists are fit to be called Malawi music. Young Kay who has managed to fuse one of the popular child play songs ‘Anakabango’ and hip-hop and is currently enjoying fair air play on the local stations said Malawian musicians had a lot to gain if they fused local folk songs with some international genres.
“We can not do songs exactly like our predecessors like Gidesi Chalamanda or Daniel Kachamba used to do, however we can learn from the past and fuse with other elements to come [up]with a Malawi music brand, “he said.
The two artists blamed the advancement of information communication technologies which they attributed to the high levels of piracy in the country. The Music Association of Malawi’s (MAM) chair person, Costen Mapemba, said currently it was not true to say that Malawi had its on music identity. “We still have a very long way to go for Malawian musicians to come up with a brand of Malawian music. Malawian music needs to be identified with Malawian culture,” said Mapemba.