Bongani Ndlovu, Showbiz Correspondent
Fans of the annual Kalawa Homecoming party are not thrilled by this year’s list of performers saying it shows that organisers have lost the plot and need to go back to the drawing board.
The list comprises of Professor, Oskido, Mpumi, Nokwazi, DJ Sox, Bhizer, DJ Fresh, AB Crazy, DJ Lyquid and Character and locals Winky D, Killer T, Sandra Ndebele, ASAPH, Mzoe7, Kwabatsha, Crazy Dee and Guluva 7.
The general feeling is that organisers needed to include artistes who topped the charts like Sjava and Durbanites, Distruction Boys and DJ Tira who rocked airwaves this year as well as man of the moment, Jah Prayzah.
One Mthandazo Nsingo, commenting on Ezra Sibanda’s timeline after he posted a flyer of the line up wrote: “Mmmm, but they should include people with sizzling hits this year like Jah Prayzah, Distruction Boyz, Samthing Soweto, Heavy K etc. No one on that list has a maddening track this year.”
Some felt that the chosen artistes are not inspiring as they cannot set the mood for partying.
Songs such as Omunye and Madness by Distruction Boyz, Ganda Ganda by Babes Wodumo, Kalamali by Sun-EL Musician, Midnight Starring by DJ Maphorisa, Inde by Heavy K and Love Potion by Mafikizolo are the ones people will be grooving to in December and as such, some of these artistes needed to be included on the line up to give it a wow factor.
Others suggested that the organisers should reflect on 2015 when they hosted one of the most successful Homecoming parties when Cassper Nyovest and AKA shared the stage at the height of their feud. This was a master stroke as it brought two of the biggest and most talked about rappers in Mzansi right to the doorstep of Zimbabweans to battle it out and show their pedigree. Another good show was in 2013 when they brought the likes of Dr Malinga, Uhuru, Character, Candy, Nokwazi, Busiswa, Heavy K and Professor as they were at the top of their musical careers.
It seems some or most Kalawa Jazmee artistes are finding it difficult to find a foothold in the SA showbiz scene.
Since 2014 when SA hip hop started making strides in that country and regionally, the demand for house music, which Kalawa Jazmee is premised on, waned. That might be the reason why Cassper and AKA who are not in the stable, were the headline acts in 2015 while the stable’s artistes played a largely supporting role.
It is, however, not too late for organisers of the Homecoming Party to add two or three star attractions to the line up to save the day. Hopefully, the words of Kalawa Jazmee spokesperson Arthur “Scotch” Mathenga that this was the first batch of artistes to be announced, means that the list will be bolstered.
Justifying the line-up, Vusumuzi Siqalaba of X-MO Squad, organisers of the Homecoming party said: “This year, we want to, at the end of the day, have more collaborations between Zimbabwean and South African artistes like what Sandra Ndebele and Professor did when he was in the country last time.”
“Our main focus is to also promote and expose the local DJs talent,” said Siqalaba.
He said they would have wanted artistes like Distruction Boys to perform but unfortunately, they are fully booked during the period.
“Distruction Boyz or Gqom music has been dominating this year, but we simply couldn’t get them to come and perform as they’re fully booked.
“We know that some of the most trending artistes from South Africa are expected by fans here to perform on the Kalawa stage but Homecoming isn’t about promoting one artiste. We want our stage to be one for all artistes to showcase their talent,” said Siqalaba.