Mbira: Spirit Of The People (ca. 1990)

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1 min read

“On holiday weekends Zimbabwe’s urban people stream home to their rural areas. These family reunions are cultural revivals. The city is a workplace not a spiritual home.”

This program presents the music of Zimbabwe, often associated with the sound of the mbira – a traditional instrument resembling a small, hand-held xylophone. In this stirring program, we hear traditional folk songs, songs used to send secret messages during the country’s long war for independence, and chants sung by today’s farmers to celebrate the nation’s goals. A renowned pop musician explains why he has returned to his African musical roots, and illustrates how he incorporates the sound of the mbira into his music.

Featuring performances by Thomas Mapfumo, Oliver Mtukudzi, Jairos Jiri Sunshine Band, Katyo Mbira Band, Msana Choir, Comrade Chinx, Beulah Diego and Nyakuchena Milk Band. Film footage depicting historical events is interwoven throughout the program.

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