Zimbabwe: Mbirimi Burial Likely Next Week

Herald Reporter

Jazz icon Friday Mbirimi, who died on Wednesday, will likely be buried next week as the family is still waiting for his children who are outside the country.

Burial of the Mbare Trio band leader is set for Warren Hills Cemetery in Harare.

Mbirimi, 70, passed away at Avenues Clinic in Harare on Wednesday after a long battle with colon cancer.

His son Clancy yesterday said burial arrangements were still in progress. His death comes barely a year after his brother Lovejoy who was also part of the Mbare Trio jazz outfit.

Mbare Trio was made up of Friday, Lovejoy and William Kashiri. Mbirimi started his musical career performing in schools in Harare with the likes of the late Simangaliso Tutani and other jazz musicians in the 1960s.

Mbirimi and his colleagues formed their first band the Shelton brothers which delivered hearty home styled Zimbabwean jazz music.

He also once joined Harare Mambo band as a drummer, in a musical career that spanned decades in the local jazz circles.

Other musicians who passed through Harare Mambo band were Elisha Josam, Clancy, Newman Chipeni, Newton Kanengoni, William Kashiri, Tanga Wekwa Sando (Ernest Sando) and Paul and Virginia Silla.

Award winning Afro Jazz musician Bob Nyabinde said: "Sad to hear of the passing on of yet another legend, the great Friday Mbirimi. The local musical fraternity is poorer today."

Zimpapers Radio Division general manager Comfort Mbofana said Mbirimi was friends with the late great Oliver Mtukudzi.

"He was a great friend of the late Oliver Mtukudzi and one night at Jazz 105 (he had just gotten off the stage with his band Trio), heard them joking with one another behind me about what day of the week it was," he said.

"It was a Sunday. We have lost another one. RIP."

Mbirimi is survived by five children.

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