By Godwin Muzari
Superstar Oliver Mtukudzi turns 64 today.
Although a bigger celebration has been saved for Borrowdale Country Manor on September 30 when the legend will also have the Zimbabwean launch of his album “Eheka! Nhai Yahwe”, a private party is on today at Pakare Paye Arts Centre where invited guests will help him celebrate the gift of life.
Today’s event will coincide with the official release of “Eheka! Nhai Yahwe”.However, the release could just be a formality since the album was unveiled in South Africa recently and pirated copies have flooded the local market.
Nevertheless, Tuku has every reason to celebrate a life in which he has led by example and inspired many young musicians to admire music as a career.
He is a star who has exhibited that music can be lucrative business while his investments and adorable lifestyle have convincingly crushed the yesteryear notion that nothing good comes out of a musician.
Getting into music in the 1970s, a time when most parents would chide their children for mentioning anything related to musicianship, Tuku has grown to be a renowned icon.
True to his totem Nzou Samanyanga (elephant), Tuku has stood as a giant in the music jungle, guiding young artistes through his Pakare Paye Arts Centre and sharing valuable notes with established singers in the terrain.
He has been a brand ambassador who has represented the country well at various international platforms and done a lot of humanitarian work beyond the stage.
As he celebrates his birthday many stakeholders in the arts industry, his corporate partners and music fans at large will indeed celebrate with him.
National Arts Council of Zimbabwe director Elvas Mari said he adores Tuku for being a role model to young artistes and there is so much to celebrate about another year of life.
“He has been a champion for the arts sector and the country at large. He has been a role model for artistes across genres and he is leading by example.
“I admire his social responsibility activities and what he has done through his Pakare Paye Arts Centre. We are happy to have such an artiste in the country and we wish him many more blessed years,” said Mari.
Musician Suluman Chimbetu, who has collaborated with Tuku on some songs and shared the stage with him on several occasions, said he was happy to learn a lot from the man who has seen it all in the music industry.
“He is my father in the music industry and I am happy to celebrate with him. We have shared a lot and he always inspires me to work hard. He is a father figure to the whole music industry and you can tell from the number of collaborations he has done. He is willing to work with everyone. I say ‘happy birthday to you Samanyanga’,” said Suluman.
Promoter Thompson Dondo of D&G Promotions that is organising Tuku’s September 30 show at Borrowdale Country Manor said their company is humbled to be part of events to celebrate the musician’s 64th birthday.
“We will be there at Pakare Paye to celebrate with him. It is such an honour have time to celebrate another year in the life of a music superstar. Our show next week comes in this wave of celebrations.
“We say ‘happy birthday’ to a hard working man. We invite many of his fans to come to Borrowdale Country Manor on Friday next week to continue with the celebrations and launch ‘Eheka! Nhai Yahwe.’ It is indeed time for mega celebration. Happy 64th birthday mudhara,” said Dondo.
The September 30 show will feature Jah Prayzah, Sam Dondo and Tariro NeGitare.
Tariro NeGitare also said her birthday wishes for her mentor.
“Thank you mudhara for mentoring us. I pray that God bless you with many more years so that you may continue inspiring more young people. Despite his great success, mudhara remains humble and I admire such humility. I will be there to celebrate with him. Happy birthday veteran musician and father to many in the industry,” said Tariro NeGitare.
Tuku’s manager Sam Mataure said a number of invited guests will today celebrate with the musician at an event that begins this afternoon at Pakare Paye Arts Centre where the superstar will share experiences of his life and career. The Herald