Thursday, May 23, 2013

Macheso sent his daughter to study in China and is failing to pay his band members & 3 members have decided to leave him

Popular sungura musician Alick Macheso has been deserted by three long-serving key  members of his band, Jonas Kasamba, Obert Gomba and Donald Gogo, over a longstanding salary dispute.
Macheso has been enjoying a rise in his profile which saw him being appointed Zimbabwe Red Cross humanitarian ambassador.
The trio has been a vital cog in Macheso’s engineroom and it is yet to be seen if he can still shine without them. At Chitungwiza Aquatic Complex, where only three out of the 10 band members turned up for rehearsals yesterday afternoon, Macheso downplayed the matter and said: “Don’t ask me about these guys. I don’t even know from which bar Kasamba is drinking today. Ini ndichangoramba ndichikuya mimhanzi,’’ he said, banging the door behind him.
Kasamba is a chanter, while Gomba is drummer with Gogo being the lead/rhythmist.
Although there are fears that the band might collapse, the sungura maestro is not new to such mishap. Just last year, popular dancer Franco “Slomo” Dhaka, backing vocalist Elton Muropa and guitarist Noel Nyazanda left Macheso to join Suluman Chimbetu’s Orchestra Dendera Kings.
Nyazanda, however, later changed his decision and rejoined Macheso.  According to one band member who spoke on condition of anonymity, problems started a few months back when allowances and appearance fees were inexplicably chopped by more than half.
“We were shocked to have our salaries cut almost by 50 percent. We tried to talk to the management about our grievances but it was all in vain.
“Quite honestly, things are not going on well within the group and the only thing we could do was to leave the group,” he said.
Another band member acknowledged that all was not well within the group but was evasive when pressed if he was with the Orchestra Mberikwazvo.
“I am currently out of town attending to personal issues but what I can assure you is that things are not well within the group. Morale is at its lowest and there seems to be no room for reconciliation,” he said, hanging up the phone.
Inside sources said the band members’ grievances emanate from the fact that Macheso sent his daughter to study overseas while band members are living in poverty. Macheso’s daughter, Sharon, is believed to have gone to China to further her studies.
Band manager William Tsandukwa said although he had heard about the desertion, he was yet to ascertain the actual details.
“Ndangonzwa nerumour kuti pane vanhu vafunga zvavafunga asi ini handisati ndabata chokwadi. Kana iri nyaya yemari kana kwenyu kuHerald, haifi yakakwana,” he said.

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