Zimbabwe: Ex-Nyami Nyami Sounds Members Sing the Blues

They were behind hits like "Dhora Rangu" and "Fundo Inokosha" released in the early 1980s, which catapulted them to household status on the local music scene.

Nyami Nyami Sounds released a number of hits that included "Zviri Nani Tirambane", which also propelled them to regional and international platforms.

Founded in Kariba, the band was fronted by different people over the past decades with some of the original band members having died along the way.

Others have reportedly pursued other interests.

Nyami Nyami Sounds later folded with some of its remaining members integrated into Karoi-based Hurungwe Sounds, which produced the track "Takasarudza Mutungamiri" in the late 1980s.

Bothwell Mkwesha was among the remaining Nyami Nyami Sounds members, who then started working with Hurungwe Sounds after his band dissolved.

Now in his old age, Mkwesha and his fellow members, who are now running under the name Dragon Crew, feel they have been neglected in the music industry by fellow artistes and recording companies.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Hurungwe Arts Festival held last Saturday in Karoi, Emmanuel Pote, who spoke on behalf of Dragon Crew members, said they have been living in anguish despite having been in music for decades.

"We have been in the music industry for a very long time," he reflected.

"It is sad that we have nothing to show for the vast experience and number of hits that we produced over the decades.

"Dragon Crew is composed of experienced instrumentalists, whose background dates back to the days of Nyami Nyami Sounds and Hurungwe Sounds.

"They are living in dire poverty as they cannot afford to travel to claim their royalties from yesteryear productions.

"A good example here is Mudhara Mkwesha, who is now roaming the streets of Karoi and depend on the little we pocket from shows around town," he bemoaned.

Pote said they decided to rename the Hurungwe Sounds to Dragon Crew for them to be accepted in their hometown.

"We are still performing yesteryear hits during our performances. It is unfortunate that we are faced with serious financial constraints to take our music to other places.

"Over the past decade, we have been confined to Karoi and the furthest we went for a show was in Chinhoyi," he said.

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