Multi-award winning gospel musician Mathias Mhere says the copycat tag he carried in his early days when he ventured into music strengthened him to grow his career and become the musician he is today.Mhere was once branded Blessing Shumba’s copycat due to striking similarities in style and presentation on albums Anoita Minana and Nguva Yenyasha, which were both produced by Lyton Ngolomi.
The 28-year old pint-sized musician has, however, proved those who doubted his artistic prowess wrong through his chart-busters that have seen him winning awards.
Speaking to The Standard Style, Mhere said he worked hard and showed his creativity to prove he had a unique sound in the genre, attributing his success to God and his supportive fans.
“I have appreciated and known that criticism will always be there. I was once labelled a copycat, but that did not discourage me to keep on working hard as I remained focused since my mission is to spread the word of God through music,” Mhere said.
The Favour hitmaker is set to launch a 12 track-album titled Old Testament — his sixth — on March 4 at 7 Arts Theatre in Avondale, Harare supported by the granddad of gospel music, Mechanic Manyeruke, Fungisai Zvakavapano-Mashavave, Timothy Ngwenya, Reverend Chivaviro and Sebastian Magacha, among others.
He said the album on which he collaborated with prominent South Africa’s Joyous Celebration member Mkhululi Bhebhe on the song Vana VaJesu, looks at different facets of Christianity and he was optimistic that it would go a long way in promoting Christian values and morals.
“We are happy with our preparations ahead of our forthcoming album that looks at different facets of Christianity, with a number of praise and deep worship songs carrying messages of how man can develop his relationship with God,” he said.
Mhere has been promoting the album, sampling some of the new songs at live concerts, which has seen his fans falling in love with songs such as Error.
“The response we are getting from the fans on some of the songs is overwhelming. After the release, we will make sure our album reaches every corner of the country with a lot of concerts,” he said.
Some of the songs to be featured on the album are the title track Old Testament, Error, Vana VaJesu, Dhindindi Full Time, Chizoro, Judas Iscariot and Munyaradzi Wangu, among others.
Mhere burst into the music industry as a vocalist for a Gweru-based group Rock of Ages before moving to Harare in 2007.
In that same year he engaged the services of guitarist-cum producer Clive Mono Mukundu to produce his debut album Tinoda Nyasha which, however, failed to make it on the market.
It was his second album Anoita Minana which propelled him to stardom through sing-along songs like Favour, Vimba NaJehova, Areka and Chipostora.
With albums Tinoda Nyasha, Anoita Minana, Nguva YeNyasha, Glory to Glory and Double Double under his sleeve, the Gutu-bred musician believes he still has a long way to go in his career.
“I still have a lot to do in this gospel music industry that is filled with talent. I really appreciate everything that my fans have done for me,” he said.
|Copying Blessing Shumba Made Me Stronger - Mathias Mhere|