Last Tuesday on Workers Day, I had the privilege of witnessing the tribal house outfit Djembe Monks doing what they know best. It is undeniable that they are the best tribal house act we have to flaunt in this city if not in the whole country. This act always has festivals knocking on their doorstep because of the great performance they dish out. In another world Djembe Monks would have people kissing the ground they tread on because of their performances.
However I was saddened by the turn out at the Tshisa Nyama bar. Please do not get me wrong, it was better than most local shows I’ve had the chance to watch, but it could have been better. Judging from the buzz that was happening on Social media about the event and how everyone promised to be there, one would have expected to find a sea of people in attendance. Unfortunately an impressive swimming pool was there.
It goes on to prove that comments retweets and likes do not amount to anything if they are not turned into a physical turn out at the event. Despite the clouding turn out, the CHOSEN FEW came out to support the drum icons in full force. Let me not be misquoted; the event was good, the 2 sets performed were magical and had the people in attendance dancing throughout.
What infuriated me more was the fact that at the gate some of the people attending the event, felt entitled to get in for free because they were somehow known figures or buddies of the group. If someone says they are your friend and fail to promote your craft by paying a mere $2 then they do not deserve to be called your friends. Quickly disassociate yourself from them and find new friends that are willing to go all out for you and your craft.
Its gobsmackingly perplexing that we have an ‘international act class’ in our own back yard, but prefer to give our money to foreign acts that only start caring for us a week prior to the event as nothing much but a promotional gimmick.
Many ‘critics’ hide behind the statement “We don’t support mediocrity” however here is one of the best brands in Bulawayo but people still fail to pay $2 to watch them perform. Are we just talk and no action? Do we enjoy criticising without having the intention of building? Those remain the questions to be answered by the coming generations after they denounce us as failures and traitors of their legacies.
We should keep singing this “Support local” propaganda until peoples ears bleed. Let us not tire let us nor hold back because of the few that beleive they are owed world class material,but still donot financially empower the locals to be able to create that world class art.
To Djemebe Monks;brothers Thank you for the good music , good vibes and passion for house music you are giving to this city. It does not go unnoticed. I bet last Tuesday was proof of that.