Zimbabwe: Chideme's Stunning Growth

Hip-hop musician Desmond Chideme, known as "Stunner" in music circles, has said he has grown to a level where he no longer wants to be identified by a genre, but by brand power.

Despite the new crop of musicians, who of late have been releasing hit after hit, the "Godo" hitmaker said he was not intimidated and had passed the competition stage.

In an interview, Stunner, who is currently riding high with his new single "Imi Amai Imi" under the recently released Nash Riddim, said it was time people understood him from music, marriage to fashion.

"I am no longer seeing the hip hop sector or genre but I am seeing the future, the whole arts industry as to where we are going," he said.

"We are now in the same spot where everyone has to make ends meet to survive.

"So, for me to say that or comment on the hip-hop artistes, I am not looking at that, but I am checking it as a whole. How I am seeing the artistes, what they are doing or not, it's no longer that time, but we just need to work."

Commenting on the single "Imi Amai Imi", Stunner said that was the kind of music they grew up listening and dancing to, so he decided to rekindle his romance with yesteryear fans. "Well, this is the kind of music we grew up listening to with that fast beat. It sounds like urban grooves. When I sang 'Mudhara Banda' it was really nothing new. I can say I have not derailed from my brand; the song I am known for. I am happy with how the song 'Batai Stella' is doing on Star FM.

"Everyone is affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and as artistes we need to have other options to survive, either hosting virtual platforms or venturing into other businesses."

The song, which is doing well on social media with over 17 000 views on YouTube three days after release, shows a curvy lady on a live set with Stunner at NashTV studios.

He is still in the game, nothing much has changed, especially the lyrical content creation and voice which made him famous.

Stunner said he was happy with the local music industry as each day has new stuff.

He said he had matured and was living a happily married life.

"No need to be doing past things. No drama. Imagine, I have grown and have beautiful daughters and a wife who not only loves me, but looks after me very well.

"Each situation has a phase. I am a family man and an artiste and my family now understands me and respects that."

Stunner said he was aiming for regional market with his fashion brand "vVvtt"- (Vapfana Vechidiki Vane Twunhu Twavo).

"I have always been a fashion conscious person and that label 'vVvtt' has always been there," he said.

"I am also happy with how it is impacting the lives of many, especially the youngsters who grew up watching us as their role models and are motivated much with what we do.

"We might not take our life seriously, but believe me there is someone who emulates what you are doing, hence always do good."

Stunner refused to share details of the album, but said for now he was focusing more on being an artiste to survive.

"I am a performing artiste not only known as a musician, and I am into fashion," he said.

"The streets are safe and it takes time and courage for one to understand the industry, like I always say, if you want to achieve your goals never be afraid of your past or look back.

"I also mentor some of the ghetto youths and I am happy some of the decadency morals we grew up hearing or doing, they now understand it and are less. That brings a better commitment."

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