SUPERSTAR Thomas Mapfumo has launched an astonishing attack on dancehall star, Winky D, saying listening to him makes his heart “bleed”.
Not one to mince his words, Mapfumo said the ‘Musarova Bigman’ star may be enjoying chart success for now, but his music would not last.
“I listen a lot to what the likes of Winky D are singing and my heart bleeds. People like Winky D are destroying Zimbabwean music,” the United States-based Mapfumo said, speaking in South Africa where he performed to 4,000 fans with Oliver Mtukudzi last weekend.
“What he sings is not our music. He can enjoy the success now, but that kind of music does not last.
“Tuku and myself would not have made it musically if we had done stuff like that. Only Winky D’s friends and relatives will buy that kind of music. He must be original to survive in music,” he added in comments published by the NewsDay newspaper.
The shock attack will dismay Winky D’s fans while opening a major debate about the future of Zimbabwean music.
Mapfumo is critical of western influences creeping into Zimbabwean music, and he feels young musicians are trying to sing other people’s music in foreign accents – but they will never be as good, he argues.
Mapfumo, who turns 66 on July 2, left Zimbabwe in 2000 saying he feared for his life after criticising the government.
His criticism of President Robert Mugabe has not abetted, but Mapfumo insists he wants to return home soon.
“I think of home daily but I can’t come back as yet because the situation is not right for me. But I will be back,” he said.
“What I miss most about home are the people ... the ordinary people inspire me. When I come back home the first thing that I will do is visit the ghettos. I always have the ghetto people in my heart.”