In as far as music is concerned; Malawi has shown signs of progress.
However, this progress has seen most artists compromising the traditional touch as they have opted for the more popular global beat.
Regardless, the few Malawians that have tried to fuse in the traditional touch in their music are facing more hurdles than anticipated.
But, undaunted by the perceived bottlenecks that one faces in flaunting traditional music, beat maker and singer Gift Anguleti, who calls himself Mbuya, has emerged to fill the gap with the intention of putting traditional music on the map.
Anguleti, who studied music in Zimbabwe and holds a Grade 4 Music Theory Certificate from the Royal School of Music in the United Kingdom, says his love for music, especially traditional music developed while in school.
“I used to play in what we used to call Percussion Band. I was good at drumming. My career started when I was first introduced to music lessons which included voice and traditionally made musical instruments at a primary school in Zimbabwe,” he said.
Anguleti, who has been on the music scene for a couple of years, has managed to develop a music genre that he calls sena jiti jive where the main instrument is the mangolongondo which is commonly known as ulimba.
“I use this instrument which gives me a masekese melody and makes my music sound unique. I sing most of my music in Sena with a fusion of some Shona vibes,” explains Anguleti.
In 2006, he released his first album which, he claims, sold 40 000 copies in Australia and the UK.
“This motivated me to do more of traditional songs having seen that my music was loved outside the country. Following this, I was invited to Australia at a festival,” explained Anguleti.
Like musicians who venture into the music industry for the long haul, Anguleti plans to take traditional music a step further. He says he plans on opening a music school.
“I wish not only to lobby for the introduction of music lessons in theory and practice but also to be examinable with a recognised examining board in primary as well as secondary schools,” he explains his case.
Anguleti has recently released his second album Akutsanzaya. The 10-track album, which is currently on the market, dwells on maintaining a sense of hope in life and the importance of trusting God.
Anguleti works at St Andrew’s International High School in the Music Department as an audio visual coordinator.