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Mutare artists demand community radio stations, say snubbed by Diamond FM

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MUTARE: Local artists said the province needs community radio stations to serve their interests as local Zimpapers owned commercial station Diamond FM was not giving them an opportunity to showcase their talent.
Some local and upcoming musicians said since its inception in May 2016, the station has never played their music and instead is giving preference to established musicians from Harare.
The artist feel government should license community radio stations which they feel can give them an equal opportunity.
“Diamond FM is more of a commercial radio station than community. We feel government should free the airwaves and allow community radio station to come on board.
“At Diamond FM we don’t have a say but in a community radio station wewill have the opportunity to have our music played,” said one upcoming dancehall musician, Ras Bunny of Sakubva.
A local producer and singer from Omaka Studios, Joshua Matikiti said he submitted some works produced by his artists but none have seen the light of the day.
“We have not been given an opportunity and we feel the coming of community radio stations will bring a sigh of relief. Imagine in countries like South Africa there are quite a number of community stations and they can help to promote our music,” said Matikiti.
Another singer and producer Marlon Chikoto from Zimunya said he submitted his works and only a few were played.
Other musicians feel the Dance hall show was being dominated by Harare and foreign-based musicians at the expense of local talent.
“Diamond is a provincial radio station and we feel our issues should be exhausted first then we look for content outside the province,” said Clive Sango, a dancehall musician from Sakubva high density area.
Zimpapers Group Public Relations Manager, Beatrice Tonhodzayi said there is a standard criterion used when selecting music played on the station.
“We cannot afford to play all the music submitted to the station. We select music that gives the station value.
“As a station our aim is to programme quality programming so we have to stick to quality so that remain relevant to our audience,” she said.
Tonhodzayi added that music will be selected according to set criteria that includes lyrical content, mixing, mastering and suitability.Advertisement

Turning to Dancehall Deca top 10, she said they included the international dancehall artists as to boost their listenership.
“The show was attracting much listenership after running it for three weeks so we took a decision to fuse local dancehall with international flavor. Radio programme sustainability is determined by listeners, advertisers and other stakeholders,” she said.