Yeukai Karengezeka Arts Correspondent
Popular gospel singer Reverend Togarepi Chivaviro is throwing a bash for his fans at the end of this month to celebrate his two decades in the music industry. The show is set for September 29 at the Anglican Gardens in the capital.
In an interview, Rev Chivaviro said he was elated about the historical event.
“I am happy at the same time feel so honoured to be celebrating 20 years of existence in the music industry. I thank God who has been inspiring my messages that are transforming many lives around the world,” he said.
Other artistes expected to perform on the day include Bethen Pasinawako,Baba Mechanic Manyeruke,Olinda Marowa and other upcoming artistes under the mentorship of Rev Chivaviro.
To date, the “Ebenezer” hit-maker has released 15 albums and eight DVD albums. The man of cloth retraces the journey which he said it was not like a straw in the park.
“My journey in this career was never easy but determination and perseverance led me to where I am today. My wife also played a major role of supporting me and giving me strength to press on,” he said.
Like any other musician he faced challenges that include recognition, piracy and lack of corporate support.
“I discovered that if you do not have that recognised ‘hit song’ it is very difficult to convince promoters, churches even the public to take you in for their programs. I almost contented myself in thinking I was destined to be just a hymns artist for my church until Ebenezer came in 2016.
“Even after the breakthrough, piracy came with a bang and we really had nothing to show for the huge success of the song in terms of sales. Even the other hits that came after have not been spared,” said Chivaviro.
He also lamented lack of sponsorship for gospel music locally unlike in South Africa and other developed countries. He said the music is shunned by promoters making it difficult for many artistes to hold shows.
His latest offering “Matishamisa Jireh” which is accompanied by a DVD is currently receiving heavy rotation on local radio stations and public gatherings with songs such as “Matishamisa”, “It’s Not Over” and “Hande Tinovaka” proving to be the favourites of many.
Although many of Chivaviro’s past efforts went largely unnoticed, it took the hit “Ebenezer” a collaborative project with Charles Charamba, Pastor Haisa, Noel Zembe, Mechanic Manyeruke and Kudzai Nyakudya to open the floodgates of success.