As a way of recognising and promote local talent, MultiChoice Malawi on Tuesday night donated two acoustic guitars to Zomba Prison Project following their nomination in the Best World Music Album category at the Grammys Awards.
Speaking at Blantyre’s Ryalls Hotel during a special dinner to honour the band, MultiChoice Malawi marketing manager Chimwemwe Nyirenda said Zomba Prison Project has exposed local talent globally.
“To us, this is not a mean achievement because it is the first time for a Malawian artist or band to be nominated for such a global music competition,” said Nyirenda.
The Zomba Prison project has broken the record for being the first local artist to be nominated for the Grammys Awards for their album I Have No Everything Here.
Although they lost to eventual winner, iconic Benin singer Angelique Kidjo, the band has been celebrated for raising the profile of Malawi music.
Nyirenda said the nomination of the music grouping is a big lesson for Malawi as it exposes hidden talent which the world yearns.
“This is a lesson for Malawi to what type of music can put the country on the global map. We are not saying artists should begin to sing like Zomba Prison Project, but rather strive to come up with authentic sound that will shake the world in terms of creativity,” said Nyirenda.
Apart from the donation of the acoustic guitars, MultiChoice Malawi also presented a certificate of excellence to Zomba Prison Project and donated DStv equipment as well as free subscription to the band.
On his part, Inspector Thomas Binamo, the band leader for the Zomba Prison Project, said they were honoured by the recognition.
“As a band, we were not expecting this and did not know what the Grammy Awards were until we first read in the The Nation newspaper. And tonight we are equally surprised to be treated to this glamorous event which simply speaks volumes of the local music,” said Binamo.
Malawi Prison Services (MPS) has committed its continued support to Zomba Music Project, which was set up for reformatory purposes.
Smart Maliro, who is MPS public relations officer, said: “As Malawi Prisons Services, we are grateful to MultiChoice and Malawians for this gesture which has simply encouraged us to do more. You may also wish to know that the Zomba Music Project has the blessing of the top bosses who value and take the initiative as a weapon to transform inmates at Zomba Central Prison.”
The special dinner and screening of the Grammy Awards was attended by people from different sectors such as arts, media, business and the corporate world.n