He has spent over a decade trying to restyle his music, band and dressing after Jamaican reggae legend Peter Tosh. Now, Limbani Banda says he cannot bear a surname that is all over Malawi’s politics.
In an effort to penetrate the international music market, the reggae artist has dumped his real name for Lambanie Dube. Yet, the surname resembles that of South Africa’s fallen top-seller Lucky Dube, an admitted admirer of Tosh’s music.
The Zomba-based dreadlocked musician said he has shredded his clan name because it is political and would not attract international audience.
This may be a subtle reference to founding president Hastings Kamuzu Banda who ruled Malawi for 31 years as well as the incumbent Joyce Banda.
Yet, the Chisoni Nkumatenda singer thinks the rebranding is a timely boost to his ninth album Africa Revolution to be released early next year.
The upcoming release is being recorded at Ralph Records and Greener Arts Studios.
“Banda is a political name and this would not help to sell my music beyond the borders. I want my forthcoming album to be big on the international stage, but I felt my old name would be a setback,” he said.
The musician said he decided to adopt the name Dube because the late South African reggae icon was also one of his idols.
“My father died when I was young and I was getting the fatherly advice through music of Lucky Dube and Peter Tosh. Just like the two, I would like to become a big star on the global stage,” he said.
His previous albums include Chains and Shackles, World Crisis and Umodzi ndi Mphamvu. He has renamed his band from Word, Sound and Power to Sound Slaves. The former was stolen straight from Tosh’s group while the latter is framed around Lucky Dube’s Slaves.