After missing a year without an album, Lucius Banda is in South Africa on a mission that will see his 17th album Time fine-tuned with the backing of The Slaves, the band that backed the slain reggae star Lucky Dube.
Speaking to The Nation this week, Banda said locally, the album is complete, but he will also work with South Africa’s The Slaves to mix it in their studio.
“Here in Malawi, the album has been produced by Ralph Ching’amba. But [the late] Lucky Dube’s producer Davie Seagal and Erik Paliani will also work on it for the purpose of quality,” said Banda.
He said The Slaves will feature in his three reggae songs Missing Lucky Dube (a tribute to Dube), Tell her I Love Her and Carry On.
Apart from reggae songs, the album also comprises two house songs, two traditional songs, three slow numbers, gospel songs as well as urban songs.
“It’s an album for everybody. As times are changing, I have also thought of making it a multi-genre album to appeal to all people. For instance, I have done a hip-hop song TsekeTseke to appeal to the youth,” he said.
About collaborations, Banda said: “I discussed with Professor [a South African house artist] at the Sand Music Festival last year for a possible collaboration, which he accepted. I will be in touch with him in South Africa so he features in one of the songs. I also hope to work with South African icon Hugh Masekela.”
As is expected of him with his tendency of delving into the political malaise besetting the country as the previous trend has shown through songs such as Cease Fire, Yahweh, Life, among others, the self-acclaimed soldier said: “Time addresses that. However, I prefer to call them ‘current affairs songs’ rather than ‘political songs’ as most people call them because they address current issues. In fact, Time comments on situations as they are on the ground.”
Banda also said he did not release an album last year because of busy schedule. The celebrated artist said he spent much of his time organising the Sand Music Festival than working on an album.
“It has been by public demand that I release this album, and I assure my fans that it will be out by March or April,” said Banda.
Renowned entertainment promoter Jai Banda has since described Banda’s gesture of collaborating with international artists as beneficial to the country and to himself as a musician.
“Collaborating with such famous people is a plus to the Malawi music industry because it will not only make him known globally but also promote Malawian music,” said Banda.