For the Culture
NKWALI’S THEMBA ALBUM RELEASE
This album ascertains itself as a mixed bag for everyone’s enjoyment and promises to be a hit even beyond the Zimbabwean borders
Written by Keith Moyo
Internationally acclaimed singer Nomathamsanqa Treatie Mkhwanazi widely known as Nkwali, is set to release her sophomore album titled Themba on the 17th of December 2020. This comes after her debut album titled Sithokozile which was released in 2015 and has enjoyed profound airplay both locally and internationally. Nkwali who is based in Germany, worked closely with renowned producer and musician Dumisani Ramadu Moyo of 10th District Records in the production of this 8 tracked album. Her second album is a dedication to her late father Charles Themba Mkhwanazi who donned the same name as the title. “Themba” (which means Hope) is dedicated to my late father who died of stroke in 2018. “I didn’t get to say goodbye and this is my own way of honouring him and bidding him farewell. He was my pillar of strength from the day I was born until the day he passed away. It still pains me to think I did not get the time to say my goodbyes; in just a few days he was gone”. One of the singles from the album touches on the pivotal issue of Gender Based Violence.
Uyimbokodo, which is already out and has a video on YouTube sends out stern messages against women abuse. Nkwali’s inspiration for this song was drawn from her own personal experience as a woman who has been a victim of atrocities brought about by society’s gender imbalances. “I got the inspiration (of Uyimbokodo) from my own experience and of course, from what we see and read about everyday life in general. Women go through so much abuse, be it emotionally, verbally, physically and sexually. We tend to ignore the ripple effects of abuse; if a mother is abused, it affects her kids as well. Children watch their fathers beat up their mothers and that is the worst thing any child can go through. In this world we live in, women are raped, killed and sometimes left for dead; these are the issues I tackle in the song. With this song, I’m basically saying let’s love, respect and protect our women because they make us who we are”.
Some of the tracks to look forward to are EMkhwananzi, which is a dedication to the artist’s late Father and her Mother. Using her family totems in song, Nkwali shows her gratitude to her parents, and the role they have played in her upbringing. Nothing expresses her Africaness like paying tribute to the two people that raised her. Speaking of Africaness, the song Amasiko, is a powerful collaboration written by Nkwali, Madlela and Gaz’elimnyama. It talks about the African culture and heritage; the importance of preserving these elements for future generations to come. Weddings are never going to be a bore again with her love song Sthandwa sami. This album ascertains itself as a mixed bag for everyone’s enjoyment and promises to be a hit even beyond the Zimbabwean borders. The album launch is in partnership with Nhimbe Trust, Phiri Event Solutions and Sabela Music and the event will take place at this year’s Ibumba Arts Festival which is scheduled to kick off from the 17th of December and shutdown on the 21st of December at the Bulawayo small city hall.
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