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Farai and the Forest Dawn reveal their top 10 musical inspirations

24/08/2016 00:00:00
by Tidi Kwidini
Zimbabwe-born lead singer Farai Muvuti

FARAI and the Forest Dawn are the exciting, multi-talented quintet that has emerged in the last couple of years, winning the hearts of fans who have fallen in love with their captivating melodic sounds, laced with a touch of Africa.

Comprised of Zimbabwe-born lead singer Farai Muvuti, guitarists Ailsa Shaw (Bass) and Charles Roper (Lead), keys player Jack Lonergan and drummer Tino Dube, the band have proved, for the last three years, that they are a force to be reckoned with.

In 2013, barely six months together as a band, they took the plunge and entered one of London’s biggest pop/rock competitions, Be on the Scene - Battle of the Bands, storming to victory mainly on their own compositions.

The band initially introduced themselves to the world through a handful of cover versions of Motown classics, and it was evident from the rich vocals and band arrangement that they were here to stay.

“They say home is where the heart is, and that is how we started in terms of sound, adding a touch of pop, jazz and African beats,” said Muvuti.

“We are all big fans of Motown as well, and we wanted our music to have an element of that and current pop themes.”

“We also wanted to infuse our sound with a touch of who we all are and show our appreciation of where we come from and what has influenced us,” Muvuti added.

The band has gone on to release a few singles, including All I Had and Beautiful, which have received rave reviews to date.

They have recently dropped their much-anticipated new single and music video, Til Death Do Us Part which is already creating a magnetic buzz on social media platforms and the music scene.

The feel-good love track, produced by Jonathan Morris (J-Fills) follows on from their successful hit Beautiful, released late last year.

And as the band prepare to embark on their Come Up Season (CUSP) Campaign, which is a series of concerts dubbed as the first artist-owned, independent platform for artists by artists, we caught up with lead vocalist Farai Muvuti to find out what band’s, and or solo artists inspire and influence their music.


The first CUSP event is scheduled to take place on the 25th of August at the O2 Academy in Angel, Islington. The Come Up Season campaign will run throughout 2016 with additional dates to be announced later on in the year at O2 venues up and down the UK.

Tickets are still available. For more information, please visit: www.faraiandtheforestdawn.com.

FFD’s top 10 bands and soloists of all time


Love their simple melodies and high powered bridges, an example is Fix you


The way they merge pop with an indie vibe is truly electric and they have a powerful live presentation. One of our favourite tracks is Learn to love Again.


Their timeless music makes them a force to be reckoned with and they have heavy production sets on stage. The Album, Songs of Innocence was an epic example of that.


4.Bruno Mars

He really allows his personality to come out through his vocals which I believe truly makes him stand out. His band oozes swagger that's unmatched. Uptown funk definitely brings out his personality.


5.Ed Sheeran

I think his song writing skills and tone make him a timeless act. One of the songs that really stands out for me is Thinking Out Loud

6.Arctic Monkeys

I love the way these guys reinvent themselves constantly especially on the track Do I Wanna Know


7.KAISER Chiefs

Their unrivalled energy and ability to transform themselves into an ‘orders day’ who are incredible, especially on Animal and, perhaps their first single I predict a Riot.


8.Oliver Mtukudzi

What can I not say about the man, his got a lot of soul in his words and powerful melody that sticks in your very heart for a lifetime. So many songs to pick as well.


9. James Bay

His Blues sound is timeless and rich melodies plus, his song-writing skills are something that we always admire. Ailsa actually did a cover of his "Let it go". We are absolute fans.

10. Thomas Mapfumo and The Black Spirits.

Very few people know that the song "Shumba" inspired the rhythm to our first single All I had. The man's sound is so rich with rhythm and ties me to the blossom of my being. The sound of Git music, which is a traditional Shona sound from Mashonaland East, Zimbabwe, carries a lot of folk and spirit in it, if I am not mistaken.


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