Braveman Chizvino Mwanza, best known as “Baba Harare” is one of the most prominent musicians in the nation of Zimbabwe....
Braveman Chizvino Mwanza, best known as “Baba Harare” is one of the most prominent musicians in the nation of Zimbabwe. His latest album, “Zimbabwean Giant” is symbolic of the vast success the talented musician has achieved. Baba Harare has also established quite the name for himself in the Southern African region. His love for the creative arts and playing the guitar culminated in him becoming the highly touted star he is today. The Hype Magazine’s Life & Style correspondent, Charles Myambo (CM) had an interview with Baba Harare (BH). Below are some excerpts from the interview.
CM: Let’s start with the name “Baba Harare”. How did you come up with such a unique yet relatable stage name?
BH: There are many stories around my name. The truth is I did not name myself. I was named by Jah Prayzah as a joke. He used to mock my love for Harare the city and how I was fascinated with Harare the city and its culture. I originally came from a very small town. The name symbolizes my love of the big city
CM: When was your passion for music ignited and what steps did you take to make your passion a reality?
BH: I am a performance arts lover. I have always dabbled in music and theater from the age of 9. Singing in the church choir. I made a decision to do street theater, just before I started my A levels. The plan was for me to pursue my studies to university level. I spoke to my parents and made a decision to pursue theater. In the theater circuits that’s when I learnt to play guitar and joined my first Sungura outfit. The rest is history
CM: You have sold out countless venues in Zimbabwe. Are there any particular memorable performances of yours that you’d care to highlight?
BH: My most memorable gig is very recent ( 4/11/22) the launch of my 7th studio album. The launch was sold out and the atmosphere was electric
CM: How significant have been the changes in your lifestyle since you became famous and relatively wealthy?
BH: I am famous but not wealthy. The harsh economic climate in Zimbabwe has an adverse impact on our ability to make money as artists. The music industry in Zim is practically non-existent. There are no regulations on how we operate and piracy is also rife. Our fans cannot afford to buy our music legitimately so they revert to buying off the black market
CM: How would you describe the power of collaboration in the industry and what are some of your favorite collaborations that you did with other artists?
BH: Collaborations especially when you have a genuine respect for each other’s work is amazing and is always a success. My latest album Zimbabwean Giant is a true testament of that. I collaborated with 5 Zimbabwean contemporary artists and one artist from Zambia. The album is currently charting from number 1-7 on YouTube’s Zimbabwe top 100. I think one of the reasons for such an astounding success is I have tapped into my collaborators diverse fanbase
CM: Achieving greatness tends to be very difficult. Could you highlight some of the sacrifices you needed to make on your way to the top?
BH: For me the biggest sacrifice is my privacy. I am a very solemn person and love my own space. I miss being obscure and unrecognizable.
CM: With 2023 fast approaching, what are your short term and long term plans for next year?
BH: My short term plan for 2023 is to take a break before I start the Zimbabwean Giant tour. Long term I want to work on a musical.
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