Gospel legend switches off microphone

Manyeruke officially announced his retirement on Monday during a Press conference at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe in Harare.

One of Zimbabwe’s pioneers of gospel music, Machanic Manyeruke, has decided to switch off his microphone and retire from music production.

Although he has called it quits, the legendary musician affectionately known as Baba Manyeruke will only be available for “special” events as and when needed.

Manyeruke officially announced his retirement on Monday during a Press conference at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe in Harare.

Born on August 16, 1942, in Chiwundura Village, Gweru, Manyeruke started his music career between 1956/7 when he was still a student at St Patrick’s.

Before he ventured into the gospel genre, Manyeruke was a secular music singer and recorded his debut single in 1969, and, four years later recorded an album with the The Four Brothers.

In 1984, he released his first album Zakewu backed by The Puritans after having gone through a rough patch with record companies and producers who were reluctant to produce gospel albums, opting for Chimurenga songs and albums.

From 1984, Manyeruke began releasing more successful albums and by 2000, he had reached 20 albums. In 2011, he released his 25th album.

As a way of celebrating the legendary singer and also to give him a befitting honour, a dinner has been scheduled for November 10 at Marina Casino Conference Centre, at Longcheng Plaza in Belvedere, Harare.

Among those expected to grace the farewell celebrations are government representatives, musicians, arts managers and church leaders, among others.

On the same night, there will also be Manyeruke’s biography launch.

“I am a farmer, I will not be just sitting in Chiwundura where my farm is, doing nothing. God has kept me strong. I am not retiring for good,” he noted.

To honour his fans, Manyeruke said he will release a nine track-album titled Mwari Taurai on the day of his retirement dinner.

“I have an album I prepared as a goodbye to my fans. Songs on the album include Ndiani Anoregerera and Mwari Mandisiirei,” he noted.

Manyeruke attributed his long life to God and encouraged young people to desist from drugs, especially mutoriro (crystal meth) which might lead to mental illnesses and other harmful actions that can also shorten their lifespan.

He said people must know that a good life comes from God.

“Eat healthy, do not take too much sugar. Young people are getting way too old before the actual age,” he said.

Meanwhile, Manyeruke was last week honoured with a Lifetime Award by Bright City Church in the United Kingdom.

Manyeruke’s rich discography include Mwari IsheWazvose, Makorokoto, Ndeyeiko Nyaya, Muchandiziva Here, Ndinamatire, Ndaiti Ndazorora, Ari MandiriJesuand Tichatevera, among others.

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