Gregory Gondwe, Malawi Best Blogger 2014

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

When Chaponda enlists Nkasa

If Joseph Nkasa was sent by minister of agriculture,irrigation and water development George Chaponda to douse fires currently burning down his political career, then his decision to take the offer has aggravated his dying musical vocation.
Conversely, if Joseph Nkasa decided to make money by singing about Chaponda’s predicament without his acquiescence then he needs to immeasurably apologize to the politician because this has done him more harm than good.   
To keep you in the loop, Joseph Nkasa, the once upon a time befitting ‘Phungu’ has produced a song that intends to spruce up the image of Chaponda who has been embroidered in maize transactions that has been bedeviled by claims of corruption.
In the song Nkasa equates Chaponda to Joseph, one of the 12 sons of the Biblical Isaac who became a defacto ruler in Egypt after being sold there by his brothers due to his closeness to their father.
He further claims that Chaponda is paying for his mercifulness to help the hunger-stricken and that people are trying to make him lose ‘his ministry’.
Nkasa declares in the song that the stones that have been thrown at Chaponda with will accumulate to his advantage as he will use it to build a house which will make him the landlord.
In all this the meaning is that Chaponda will use the ridicule currently peddled about his involvement in the maize saga to become the leader of this country.
Anyway, my intentions are not to get the meaning out of this song but to describe the artist Nkasa who has been dubbed as the master lyricist who ingeniously uses metaphors and innuendos to craft his songs.
Of course Nkasa came on the musical scene in the late 90 but it was in the early-to-mid 2000 that he hogged the limelight with the production of his ‘WayendaWapenga’ toils.
When he materialized again with an album that had tracks like ‘Zosayina-sayina’ the acceptance of lyrical packed songs was overwhelming that apart from huge sales in 2003 he got over K1 million in Mechanical, Public Performance and Broadcasting Royalties from the Copyright Society of Malawi (Cosoma).

This was a huge amount of money at the time and it made him go bananas as he went of spending spree buying property including cars without thinking of how best to manage his resources.

By the time he got another cheque from Cosoma in 2009 which was close to K600 thousand, he had still not learnt a lesson on how best to manage resources.

To show that that his popularity has waned, in the December 29, 2009 Cosomapay out, it was Lawrence Mbenjere who set a new record when he became the first musician to cart home money in excess of over K2.5 million in royalties.

Nkasa’s hunt for money has led him to many places including begging and even performing with Zembani and Alleluya Bands. But all this has not brought as much money as he wants.

In between though, he almost hit gold when he started toying with politicians in earnest.

He did a track for President Bingu wa Mutharika called ‘Mose wa lero’ which helped lift his stature as a presidential candidate making Mutharika the first to achieve an over 70 percent landslide victory.

Nkasa has always claimed never to have received ‘enough’ money with the hit single. But this remains disputable because he has now gone to bed with different politicians for the sake of money.

Nkasa composed a song for the then parliamentary Speaker Chimunthu Banda when he stood for DPP Presidency, but it emerged that it was not successful at all as Chimunthu tumbled miserably.

After the Chimunthu debacle he went into an agreement with PPM’s Mark Katsonga who allegedly paid K7 million for political songs, jingles and live performances all to discredit Joyce Banda government and prop up the name of PPM’s torch bearer.

In fact media reports indicate that Nkasa signed an MOU with Katsonga to produce a five-track album – among the tracks, ‘Kulirakwa a Mphawi’, ‘Wanunkha Malawi’, ‘OpaniYehova’ – at a cost of K1,074,000.00; five promotional jingles at K500,000 and hold 93 live performances to a tune of K5,580,000 coming to a total of K7, 154, 000.

While the effectiveness of this project had not even materialised, Nkasa joined the PP ranks and did a track for Joyce Banda whom he had discredited in the other tracks.

The JB track which was first heard on her Ufulu Radio and state owned MBC presents a litany of development achievements of the President and why she would be voted to retain power.

While I can neither accuse Nkasa for his lack of ethical sense nor the politicians for taking any routes to seek vain glory, one thing that is clearly standing out is that Joseph Nkasa does not believe in what he sings.

It is therefore very difficult for Malawians to even believe in whatever messages his tracks contain, otherwise his message remains a mockery to voters. Imagine if one listens to both the Katsonga tracks and the JB song, would they really make a position based on Nkasa’s position?

No wonder Nkasa has not succeeded as a musician even when he attempted to establish his Zosayina Band because he is into musical prostitution that knows no morals. With such dearth of any guiding principles looking into one’s career, one cannot prosper in any discipline.

To prove my point, if the CSOs that are baying for Chaponda’s blood only gave Nkasa money to do a song against Chaponda, he will do exactly that unashamedly.


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