The Herald (Harare)

4 January 2013

Zimbabwe: Douglas Chimbetu Comes of Age

Since partying ways with father, Allan Chimbetu, Douglas has faced numerous challenges. Many have doubted his capabilities in holding his own as a serious musician. However, his followers can testify how the young man has come of age.

While he has not been as lucky as his siblings from the fast growing Chimbetu dynasty, he has backed the likes of Peter Moyo, Somandla "Mafia" Ndebele, Beverly Sibanda and cousin Tryson.

Interestingly, music followers have noticed how Douglas continues to carry an undiluted and original dendera unlike his peers in the industry.

In his debut album "Tsimba", Douglas has maintained the famous beat.

Recorded at Diamond Studios, who are also marketing and distributing it, the six-track album is laden with pure dendera gems.

The songs have a strong influence from the late dendera music founder and exponent, Simon Chimbetu.

Even Diamond Studios director Steady Munyanyi could not help but marvel at Douglas' composition skills, mature vocals and instrument arrangement.

If Douglas maintains the form exhibited on this album, then only time will tell who the real king of dendera between the second generation dendera icons.

This does not mean that there should be any fight for the mantle among these artistes.

The album kicks off with the song "Vahosi" and is about a first wife in a polygamous marriage.

The title track, "Tsimba", talks about the direction that one takes after those who were after them.

He pays homage to his predecessors for carving out the path he is following.

The devastating effects of death and how it robs people of their beloved ones makes up the gist of the track "Rufu" while "Tiroorane" talks about the desire for one to walk down the aisle with his or her beloved one.

"Saunyama" and "Chipiseni" make up the rest of the playlist on the album.

"We are impressed by the way that young man has started on such a high note.

"Unlike his contemporaries who are into urban grooves, Douglas has decided to stick to the original dendera beat and he is following the line that was started by his late uncle Simon," Douglas' spokesperson Allan Mutumba said.

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