The Herald (Harare)

20 September 2012

Zimbabwe: Diamond Musica Bounces Back

Diamond musica mapenzi ( Resource: Diamond Musica - Mapenzi

It seems that after a period where rhumba music had somewhat lost its appeal among Zimbabwean fans, the all-new Diamond Musica has resurfaced fronted by Pitshou Lumiere. The 14-member group wants to reignite the love for the music with some rhumba in its original form and uninhibited.

"At the moment there is not one band that can deliver rhumba music like Diamond Musica.

"We have regrouped to bring back the original rhumba just like we did when we released 'Amaule'.

"So if you are a big rhumba fan you got to love the new Diamond Musica," Lumiere said.

Comprising two Zimbabwean guitarists, singers, choreographers and a rapper who does the animation on stage all from the DRC, the group believes it's the next big thing to happen on the music scene.

"We are a unique group with people of different talents and this is what makes us the big deal.

"From the way we fuse Shona and Lingala to the stage work, its different from any other ordinary group," he said.

Currently, the group is working on its first studio album after years of absence.

Their latest dance "Amataki naMoto" which means riding a motorbike has taken the club scene by storm.

"Besides 'Amataki naMoto' we have another dance called 'Akapfeka Mini skirt' which is still doing the rounds as well," Lumiere said.

Asked why they took long to come back, Lumiere said the delay was due to poor funding.

"We were looking for a manager and promoter who was prepared to take rhumba to the next stage.

"For now we are well because we got a new manager and promoter so the rest is up to the group to deliver," he said.

Lumiere, who is originally from the Bandundu Province in DRC ,has been living in Zimbabwe as a member of the original Diamond Musica alongside veteran lead guitarist Eliston Shaka Zulu.

However, he left the group to form Rhumba La Musica in 1992.

The band has since recorded two albums -- "Experience" and "Tout Va Bien" which featured Shaka Zulu on lead guitar. "Experience" did well in the United Kingdom, France and East Africa.

All the songs were composed and arranged by Lumiere who sings a combination of zouk, afro-jazz and ngwasuma popularly known in Southern Africa as kwasa kwasa.

Part of Lumiere's allure is that he has a voice that reminds many of his days with the original Diamond Musica, yet the sound could rival that of any rhumba musician.

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