SULUMAN Chimbetu tours the United Kingdom at the end of this month for inaugural shows under his recently-registered production and promotion company, Dendera Entertainment.
The three-show tour will be supported by the “Dancehall Doctor”, Freeman, with whom Sulu has had successful performances in the past in that part of the world.
“This is our first time to work as our own brand and without side promoters,” said UK-based Steven “Papa Stavo” Chimbetu who is one of the Dendera Entertainment Directors.
“There has been increasing demand for our music, particularly from Zimbabweans resident here.
“So we said, why not give them the chance to celebrate the life and works of the founder of the genre (the late Simon) during this month of August when those at home are also in the middle of honouring all our heroes?
“(Simon) died in the month of August, so you could also say that the UK tour is two-fold.”
The other two are Zivanai Matsvetu and Suluman himself.
The senior Chimbetu passed on in August 2005 aged 49, and was declared a liberation war hero. He was interred at Chinhoyi Provincial Heros Acre.
A song-writer of note, Simon released 21 albums during a career that began with the album Mwana Wedangwe in 1983 to 10 Million Pounds Reward which he recorded the year he passed on.
“Expectedly, Sulu will also sample songs from his forthcoming album which is coming out at a time to be advised soon, and on the itinerary, we have a town that has not been included before on previous tours,” said Papa Stavo.
According to Steve, the Dendera Kings depart Harare on the 27th and will kick-start their act at the Dunstable Leisure Centre in Luton on Friday, August 29.
The following evening, they rock the Club Platinum in Coventry, before rounding off with a family show at the Aug Sol House in Manchester on Sunday, August 3 which will also be the first time the ensemble reaches out to their fan base on that side of the UK.
“The visas are out for the entourage and we have ensured we have more spacious venues complete with tight security and secure parking for cars.
“As a new management company, we are also keen on promoting other players in the industry, moreso upcoming musicians so that they, too, have the chance to benefit from the exposure and carve names for themselves while benefitting financially,” said Steve.Advertisement
The decision by Chimbetu to establish his own company follows the route taken by other established musicians, among them Thomas Mapfumo with his Chimurenga Music Label and Oliver Mutukudzi who has the Tuku Music brand.
While no comment could personally be obtained from him at the time of going to press, he probably reckons it is high time he becomes his own man after many years of leaning on promoters.