Feb 20, 2018 Last Updated 1:58 PM, Feb 20, 2018


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Up and coming musicians in the Malawi are expected to get exposure in the industry following the launch of a new record label.

Under the banner Full Nation Entertainment (FNE), the record label seeks to give a stage to local musicians for them to showcase their talent and earn from it as well.

FNE, which has been operational for two years was officially launched in Lilongwe on Friday.

Musicians Lumionous, Pendo and Teddy Muva are currently the only artists signed under the label but management is expecting to sign as their journey continues.

President for Full Nation Entertainment Novahiwa Mjojo told Capital FM that the launch symbolises the beginning of a new era in the music industry.

“We want to discover new and raw talent and even people that haven’t been given the bigger platform and we are ready to complement, contribute and learn in our course of work,” Said Mjojo.

On his part, Luminous commended FNE for its work and believes he can offer his music better to the nation and the world in general as he is under the record label.

“In Malawi it is very hard for one to get signed under a record label and as it is now a privilege, I feel like the industry will get the missing piece of the puzzle.”

Chief Executive Officer for FNE, James Chirwa in the same vein highlighted the need for networking among people in the industry for it to grow.

Chirwa hinted that the label will flourish unlike other record labels when they continue networking with musicians, producers, videographers and the government.

The latest project by the record label is the release of a single titled ‘Set Me Free’ by Luminous featuring Pendo, the single was released on Monday. 

Bruno Mars and Kendrick Lamar stole the show, and most of the awards, at the 2018 Grammys.

Mars provided the night's big upset, taking the album of the year trophy that most critics assumed would go to Lamar's rap tour de force, Damn.

In the end, voters found Mars's crowd-pleasing R&B more palatable, while Lamar dominated the rap categories.

Alessia Cara won best new artist - making her the only female artist to win a major prize.

Stars like Lady Gaga, Kesha, Lorde and SZA were overlooked, with only 17 awards (out of a total of 86) going to women or female-fronted bands.

The imbalance was particularly incongruous on a night that highlighted the #TimesUp and #MeToo campaigns.

Most performers arrived for the show wearing a white rose to symbolise their support for the movements, which tackle sexual harassment and inequality.

Grammys 2018

Album of the year: Bruno Mars - 24K Magic

Record of the year: Bruno Mars - 24K Magic

Song of the year: Bruno Mars - That's What I Like

Best new artist: Alessia Cara

Best pop album: Ed Sheeran - ÷ (Divide)

Best rock album: The War On Drugs - A Deeper Understanding

Best R&B album: Bruno Mars - 24k Magic

Best rap album: Kendrick Lamar - Damn

Hip Hop artist Chavura is expected to appear before court on Teusday to answer charges of producing obscene matters which is against section 179 of Malawi's penal code.

Chavura, whose real name is Mwiza Chavura, will appear before the Lilongwe Magistrates Court.

In December last year, Chavura released a song titled Nzakupanga Rape which ignited debate, with many people condemning it.

Organisations, the public and some artists described the song as a mockery to the modesty of a woman and that it was propagating sexual violence, specifically rape.

The artist admitted that the song was inappropriate and apologized to people.

He was arrested in Blantyre on Friday and he was later, on the same day transferred to Lilongwe for interrogation.

South African jazz legend Hugh Ramopolo Masekela has died, aged 78.

Masekela lost his battle with prostate cancer, for which he had been treated since 2008.

In October, he cancelled a scheduled performance at the Hugh Masekela Heritage Festival in Rockville, Soweto to dedicate himself to battling the disease and called on all men to go for regular cancer check-ups.

Masekela was born on 4 April1939 in Witbank. As a child, he began playing the piano, but a movie about jazz cornetist Bix Beiderbecke, Young Man with a Horn, inspired him to shift his musical allegiances.

Anti-apartheid activist Father Trevor Huddleston helped Masekela to acquire a trumpet and ensured he received tuition, resulting in his rapidly joining South Africa’s first youth orchestra, the Huddleston Jazz Band.

In the late 50s, Masekela joined up with Dollar Brand (later known as Abdullah Ibrahim), Kippie Moeketsi, Jonas Gwangwa, Johnny Gertze and alternately Early Mabuza or Makaya Ntshoko on drums, to form The Jazz Epistles, who regularly performed at the Odin Theatre in Sophiatown.

In 1959, Masekela joined the cast of Todd Matshikiza's "all-African jazz opera" King Kong. The musical, which also helped launch the career of Miriam Makeba, received permission to perform in London in 1961.

With the Sharpeville massacre in mind and with jazz being seen as an expression of resistance, performances and broadcasts in South Africa were severely restricted. Masekela took the opportunity, along with many other members of the cast, to remain in England, effectively going into exile, and enrolled at the London Guildhall School of Music, later moving to the Manhattan School of Music in New York.

Here he befriended musician and political activist Harry Belafonte, and his music increasingly began reflecting the harsh realities of repression and discrimination back home.

Masekela married Miriam Makeba in 1964, but the couple divorced in 1966.

Masekela had success in the United States with a pop-jazz tune, "Up, Up and Away", in 1967.

He performed at the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival, alongside Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin, before releasing Grazing in the Grass in 1968, which reached number one on the pop and R&B charts.

In 1970, he toured Guinea with Miriam Makeba and met Nigerian AfroBeat musician Fela Kuti and the Ghanian band Hedzoleh Soundz.

This led to his breakthrough album "Introducing Hedzoleh Soundz", one of the most highly regarded Afro-jazz albums of the decade.

In 1974, Masekela released his album I Am Not Afraid, which included Stimela (Coal Train), a song that became synonymous with his performances for decades to come.

Masekela performed on recordings by the Byrds, made an album in 1978 with trumpeter and bandleader Herb Alpert, and later collaborated with Paul Simon.

Women’s rights activists are demanding  the Malawi Censorship Board to wake up and start acting on artistic material considered obscene by the public.

The call comes after Mwiza Chavura, a local hip hop artist, released a song which they believe is glorifying rape.

The rapper who goes by the stage name Chavura released the song, titled Ndizakupanga Rape, in which he sings about a woman refusing to be in a relationship with a man, who then contemplates raping her.

Over the past week, social media has been flooded with mixed views on the song by artist Chavura.

Some have criticized the artist while others believe he is being judged unfairly.

Several organisations, including his fellow artists have condemned the song saying it is promoting bad behaviour in the society.

According to the Women’s Legal Resources Centre (WOLERC) and the non-governmental organisation, Gender Coordination Network, the song does not deserve to be in the public domain and should be banned.

These organisations and the public have called on the Malawi Censorship Board to act on the matter immediately.

Speaking to Capital FM, WOLREC’s Communications Manager Dumase Zgambo Mapemba wants the song to be banned.

“That song was not supposed to be in the public domain in the first place because it is encouraging rape and it is bad especially for the youth as it is a rap song which is young people listen to a lot,” Mapemba said. 

Apart from the mastermind, the public also blames the websites that had the song available for download.

One of those is Malawi Music.com which has since issued a public apology.

The country has however seen a lot of songs similar to this particular one, but there has never been such a reaction.

In the 21st century, where rights are of absolute significance, how can artists exercise their right to expression, without crossing boundaries of social acceptability?

A renowned radio personality Joy Nathu is of the view that artists should concentrate on the lyrical content when composing songs.

In an interview with Capital FM, Chavura has apologized to the nation even though he feels he has been misunderstood.

“The song was not meant to degrade women in any way. I am taking full responsibility for the song.

The song has two parts and the second part of it condemns rape while the first part gives a picture of a rapists’ mind,” Chavura explained,

Rape is not only a crime but also an inhumane act that often leaves the victim mentally scarred.

Most people who have commented on social media believe the song is demeaning to women and girls, more so those who have ever fallen victim to rape or any form of sexual abuse.

The country’s censorship board is expected to release a statement, in reaction to the developments.

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