Top Zim Musician Jah Prayzah put on a brave face on stage, as he shifted focus away from his unfolding “s.exual abuse” allegations by his former dancer-cum-vocalist, Pamela “Gonyeti” Zulu, staging an energetic performance on Friday at Borrowdale Manor in Harare.
The Tsviriyo hitmaker, who is under scrutiny, as his alleged se_xual indiscretions, which have divided opinions, was performing as one of the supporting acts at Oliver Mtukudzi’s 65th album Eheka! Nhai Yahwe (Enjoy! My Dear Friends) release concert.
Performing as a second act after Afro-jazz sensation, Tariro NeGitare’s appreciated performance, Jah Prayzah, backed by his Third Generation band, managed to delight a section of the fans, who were part of the sizeable crowd that graced the concert.
Judging from the fans’ responses during his set, which had a playlist of songs such as Jenny, Goto, Hello, Hossana, Mdhara Vachauya and Watora Mari from his latest offering Mdhara Vachauya, it confirmed their support, as they sang along and danced.
He now carries the man-of-the-moment tag on the local showbiz scene, having filled the giant venue, Harare International Conference Cenference to the rafters.
However, many people fear the unfolding “se_x drama” that is drawing negative publicity for his brand, could threaten his continued dominance on the local music scene, which has seen him receive several endorsement deals both locally and regionally.
Third Generation band’s backing vocalist and dancer, Fatima “Stimela” Katiji’s absence due to illness has seen the group performing with only one female, the new recruit, Excavator, who replaced Gonyeti.
However, beyond that, Jah Prayzah appeared to have cheated the fans, who wanted more from him on stage, but he had to rush for another concert at Odyssey Hotel in Kadoma, where he shared the stage with dendera musician, Douglas Chimbetu.
The issue of double-booking by artistes has become a matter of concern to many fans, who have openly complained of being shortchanged.
Fans have complained of shoddy performances by the artiste as a result of fatigue emanating from multiple performances.
Another performer on the night, rising musician, Sam Dondo, who performed after Jah Prayzah and later left the stage for Tuku, failed to absorb the pressure associated with sharing the stage with seasoned artistes.
Dondo failed to thrill the mature fans, who later booed him off the stage and he paved way for the main act, Tuku and his Black Spirits band.
The young musician appeared overwhelmed by the exposure.
Tuku, the grandee of Zimbabwean music, received wild cheers, as he entered the stage about half an hour before midnight, with people in the VIP enclosure, who included had Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere and Police Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri, among other top government officials, moving closer to the stage to take pictures.
Tuku serenaded the fans, justifying his legendary status in the music industry that has seen him wining hearts of many music lovers across the globe.
The highlight of Tuku’s performance was when he was joined by his wife, Daisy, on the song Haasi Masanga, where they collaborated for the first time in his over three-decade music journey, much to the enjoyment of the fans, who were kept on their toes during the entire performance.
Tuku’s set had old and new songs, as he takes his recently released album to the fans.
The latest album comprises old and new songs that illustrate a number of social issues, showing his prowess on lyrical composition.