By Kundai Marunya
What started out as a slow night with Sulumani Chimbetu performing before an almost empty Harare International Conference Centre (HICC) ended up as a crowning moment for NAMA award winning musician ExQ (real name Enock Munhenga).
As the venue started filling up ExQ took to the stage and delivered a stellar performance that earned him a spot amongst the best performers of the night.
Backed by a live band courtesy of the Military Touch Movement (MTM), the musician belted hits including “Tsvigiri” and “Msikanzwa” to the delight of the crowd.
He justified why even after the era of the urban grooves movement he remains relevant and vibrant, even more than many Zimdancehall musicians.
Meanwhile, Patoranking refused to be among the many international acts that are often outclassed by locals.
Clad in a gold and black attire, the musician gave a polished performance that justified the US$15 many Hararians parted ways with to see him on stage, even in these times of austerity.
He paid tribute to late music superstar Oliver Mtukudzi singing Tuku’s early hit “Tozeza Baba”.
He was not the only musician to pay tribute to Tuku, with Jah Prayzah dressing his band all-black, and kicking off his show with Tuku’s song.
Back to Patoranking: Though many thronged the event only expecting hits like “My Woman My Everything” and “This Kinda Love”, the musician had a few other rhumba and soukous hits to thrill Zimbabwean revellers.
He delivered a top drawer performance as many Zimbabweans paid him to do.
Winky D was at his usual best, ending his fans’ six months hunger for his live shows after he took a sabbatical. He could have easily been the star of the night if ExQ had not done the unexpected.
He nearly brought the house down when he belted out his hit “Mugarden” with Gemma Griffins.
Winky’s performance was, however, not sufficient to upstage Nigerian star Patotanking whose reggae dancehall songs still ring in many people’s subconscious long after the show.
Other musicians who put up commendable performances were Jah Signal, Chimbetu, Jah Prayzah and Shabak The Band.
It was truly an show to remember.