Oliver Mtukudzi: Wonai (Elite)

 |   |  <1 min read

Oliver Mtukudzi: Chara Chimwe
Oliver Mtukudzi: Wonai (Elite)

Known as "Tuku" after the style of music he created, singer-guitarist Mtukudzi from Zimbabwe battles the usual problem that musicians from Africa face: if Peter Gabriel isn't behind you or you don't have a Womad slot then basically nobody gives a shit.

Ah well, here he is for a discerning Elsewhere audience.

Mtukudzi has recorded about 50 albums (which places him in the Bob Dylan category) and his Putumayo compilation "The Tuku Years" got a very nice mention by me in the Herald about four years ago.

Some might remember him rocking the Auckland Town Hall at a Womad almost a decade ago.

Mtukudzi does try to woo an audience more used to Western pop and rock -- but those efforts (here on the over-produced and English-language schmaltzy The Third World Cries Every Day) are often numbingly ordinary and MOR.

He is at his best when he simply gets it on Tuku-style. Which -- that Third World track being the ignominous exception -- is what he does here.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

GLOBAL RADIO: A round-up of recent world music releases

GLOBAL RADIO: A round-up of recent world music releases

Because Elsewhere is one of the few mainstream websites which has no problem writing about world music in the same space as pop, rock, jazz, reggae and whatever, we have been increasingly inundated... > Read more

The Malawi Mouse Boys: He is #1 (Southbound)

The Malawi Mouse Boys: He is #1 (Southbound)

Their name alone sends you to You Tube to find out more about the Malawi Mouse Boys . . . and indeed that is exactly what they are. They sell mice kebabs on the roadside as a kind of... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Gary US Bonds: From a Buick 6 (1981)

Gary US Bonds: From a Buick 6 (1981)

Because he was just a great rock'n'soul, one-off belter in that dead air between Elvis-in-the-army and the Beatles-on-Ed Sullivan, there was no reason to think Gary Bonds would have had any second... > Read more

Otis Rush: All Your Love (1958)

Otis Rush: All Your Love (1958)

One of Eric Clapton's most definitive and distinctive early statements was his cover of this song by the great Otis Rush, which appeared on the John Mayall Blues Breakers album of '65. You can... > Read more