The Chiyangwas’ music promotion passion legacy continues

Bruce Chiyangwa; Kudzanai Karikani a.k.a Rev. Shelly Dee

Chiyangwa’s generous donation to Zimdancehall artist Reporter-Lovemore Lubinda

The late James Chiyangwa ‘Jimmy Jimalo’ was known for his love and support of music, many big names in the industry in a way or the other came through his hands, the man could be long gone now, but his passion has just been rekindled.

Jimalo was young brother to the business magnate and now Zimbabwe Football Association and Council of Southern Africa Football Associations president Dr Philip Chiyangwa.

His involvement into the music circles was not motivated by monetary returns, but by the love of it, and his demise was indeed a huge blow to the arts industry, and music promotion has never been the same again ever since, from which music promoters today should learn.

Writing about him from South Africa in 2016, Donna Kays described the man as a person whose passion for music has made him a musician too, though without holding the microphone.

Jimalo’s love for music dated back when he worked behind the scenes with Thomas Mapfumo back in the days then, and later resorted to help and promote established and upcoming musical talent in the country. This saw him helping musicians with venue and accessing musical instruments, a challenge that many musicians in Zimbabwe have over the years bemoaned.

Jimalo died in 2011, after succumbing to cancer, and was buried with a huge send-off at his rural home in Zvimba.

During his funeral, prominent musician Oliver Mtukudzi said Jimalo was a man of people who had a great passion for music.

In 2011, the love for music that runs in the family, saw Philip Chiyangwa penning a song Pachinyakare chedu in which he tried to address the moral decay among today’s youths, after his other son Brian had also tried a hand in music, he had collaborated with Stunner and Extra Large music outfit, three years before.

Philip is also known to have had done a lot for the local music industry including bringing in highly acclaimed and now late king of pop Michael Jackson, and prominent musicians in Africa, like Kanda Bongoman into the country. Jackson visited the country in 1998, and he was hosted by Chiyangwa.

Six years after the passing on of Jimalo, the Chiyangwas have just re-ignited the music promotion spirit again.

A young upcoming Zimdancehall artist Kudzanai Karikani popularly known as Rev. Shelly Dee could not believe his luck when he was recently given a housing stand by Bruce Chiyangwa, son to Philip, as an appreciation of his talent.

Shelly Dee was given a housing stand in Stone Ridge Park and 10 000 bricks.

Bruce said was happy to rekindle the family’s love for promoting local music, his family has helped many other people in music before, and Shelly Dee was just one of them, said Bruce, adding that he was driven to help this young man after noticing the great talent and seriousness in him.

He also took time to urge musicians particularly young and upcoming like Shelly Dee that it pays to be honesty in whatever one does, as dishonesty destroys character.

Talking about the stand, Bruce said; “My advice to him is that he has to work hard so that he built on the stand, you can’t give someone everything, and what I did is to give him the larger part, the foundation, it is now up to him to also put in his effort in developing it.”

He said Shelly Dee has greater potential to be one of the household names in ZimDance Hall music, but need to grow in his music career, by incorporating English in some of his music so that it appeals internationally.

The 21 year old Shelly Dee says he was touched by the Chiyangwas’ generosity in helping less privileged members of the society.

“I am not the only one to be helped by him, neither am I the first; the Chiyangwas have helped others with different things from food, stands, and paying school fees for the less privileged in our society,” he said.

Shelly Dee was born on 6 August 1996, at Mutoko Centre Hospital educated at Batanai Primary School in Mabvuku and did his secondary education at Tafara High School he is currently living with his parents there in Mabvuku.

The young musician said he started music at a tender age, but started recording at the age of 16. He has one album under his belt called Mapfumo with 8 tracks, and has 30 singles and 12 videos. He is also an actor and he featured in a TV drama ‘The Other Brother’ where he acted the character Cyril Marikanos. His other hits were Ndofira ghetto rangu, Xenophobia, and Ndozeza baba.