Towards the end of last year, many people fell in love with Baba Harare’s hit “The Reason Why” and the song became a festive season anthem. Followers of the song liked the jiti beat that reminds many of yesteryear hits like David “Mr Bulk” Chiyangwa’s track “Mujinga Regomo” and “Murambinda” by Paul Mpofu. Jiti has a way of sending people wild on the dance floor.
While many Radio Zimbabwe listeners were disappointed that “The Reason Why” did not do well on the station’s end-of-year charts, jiti lovers had consolation in another song titled “Doris”.
“The Rason Why” was unexpectedly placed on number 44 of Radio Zimbabwe’s Coca-cola Top 50, but “Doris” made the jiti family happy as it came in on number 16.
Many people do not know the man behind the song.
The singer goes by the moniker Uncle Neshto and his real name is Stanley Nenge. His song “Doris” is off his album titled “Jit Vibration”.
The man says he fell in love with the beat because of the energy that the genre seems to inject into revellers whenever it is played.
“Jiti is one genre that pushes people to the dance floor. When people need serious dances, play them a jiti song and you will see what happens,” said Uncle Neshto.
“I did this release of jiti songs to make people dance their problems away. Jiti is all about having fun and I was glad to see how people lost themselves in the dance web at one of my shows in Mvuma. They went wild and that is what music for merrymaking should do to people.”
Other tracks on “Jit Vibration” are “Manhungetunge”, “John”, “Amina” and “Maindishainira”. On the album Uncle Neshto worked with elite producers Mono Mukundu and Knowledge Nkoma.
To enhance the jiti vibes, Uncle Neshto has collaborated with Freddy “Kapfupi” Manjalima on an upcoming song titled “Mwana Ndewani”.
Kapfupi once shook the showbiz scene with his jiti song titled “Chikwama” and his collaboration with Uncle Neshto is likely to be good.
“I was glad to work with talented producers that perfected my project. I know the music will slowly penetrate the market. Getting into top 20 of Radio Zimbabwe Top 50 was a good achievement for us. We want to market jiti music to other countries and safeguard the traditional beat.”
Uncle Neshto, who is based in the United Kingdom, said he wishes to take the beat to music followers of various backgrounds.
“Many foreigners have an appreciation of our traditional dances. I will work with a local traditional dance group based in the United Kingdom to market jiti to other races. Many people have an interest in our culture and music is the best vehicle to take our culture out there and promote tourism.”
Before turning to jiti, Uncle Neshto did a number of gospel albums that introduced him to the recording industry.
“I was born in a family of singers, but I never thought I would record my music. My father and mother were good singers at church. We used to practise at home and sing in church as a family. That is how my interest in music grew.
“My first time in studio was when I accompanied my cousin who was recording his album in Bulawayo. One day when I was at studio with him, he was upset that one of his backing vocalists had not turned up for the session.
“His producer Joe Maseko asked me to try a few lines on the microphone and that was how my recording career began. I replaced the missing backing vocalist and I was encouraged to also try my own music. That was the beginning of a career that has now turned into a pursuit of the jiti beat.”
With the guidance of experienced music manager Mathias Bangure, who is handling his local affairs, Uncle Neshto hopes to take jiti vibes to another level.
Source : The Herald