A number of petitions have been written to get one of Zimbabwe’s most celebrated musicians back on stage a thing he has never responded to. He has continued with his life away from the glitz and glam of the music industry in the United States of America.
Today we look back with seven things you need to know about the legendary musician Lovemore Majaivana, who was this year honored with a Life Achievement Award at the Roil Bulawayo Arts Awards for his stellar contributions to the music scene.
1. Majaivana started singing at an early age and would sing in the church choir in which his father was a minister in.His parents were against singing but Majaivana would sneak out in the evenings to rehearse with groups such as The High Chords and the Echoes, performing as a lead singer.
2. His parents only discovered his talent when he won the best vocalist at a music competition at the 1977 Trade Fair Rhodesia (now known as the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair).
3. He sang three of the nine songs in the 1988 anti-apartheid movie “A world apart”, which was directed by Chris Menges. The film was a co-production between companies from the UK and Zimbabwe. It features Hans Zimmer’s first non-collaborative film score.
4. The musician earned the faux surname ‘Majaivana’ (which means good dancer or one who loves to dance) for his exceptional dancing skills.
5. Music runs in his family considering that his brother Anderson was in his band,his father used to sing at church his mother (MaNyathi) influenced his music and together with her young sister penned some of the songs that he would fine-tune during rehearsals.
6. At age 16 Majaivana and his friend Mtshapi a neighbor, built their own first set of drums from plastics and empty cardboard barrels cut in half. They carried these drums all around local Beer Gardens (Manwele and Big Bhawa) in Bulawayo playing to patrons for whatever the patrons saw fit.
7. Together with ‘The Jobs Combination’ Majaivana instantly became popular with songs such as Angilamali,Isizungu and Istimela. The band later disbanded forcing Majaivana to join an already established band ‘The Zulus’ which was from Victoria Falls, and renamed Bachise in 1984.
Majaivana and his band went on to release their first album which had original sounds that had no western influence. The album had the hit song ‘Salanini Zinini’ that made the band popular.
Majaivana’s song have all remained relevant among the young and the old in Zimbabwe.