BY WINSTONE ANTONIO

FORMER Chibuku Road to Fame competition finalist and Afro gospel singer, Simbarashe Chikomo, is set to end his 10-year hibernation with the release of his third album titled Step by Step to be launched next month.

The new eight-track offering will be launched online in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic, which has seen the government impose a lockdown barring public gatherings such as music events.

The Kariba-based singer and The Afro Peace band frontman had starved his fans for almost 10 years due to financial problems with his last release being his second album Chikonzero in 2010.

The forthcoming album, Step by Step, carries social commentary derived from themes centred on people’s day-to-day lives.

Chikomo engaged the services of popular music producer Charles Ayibek of Big Sound Studios on the new offering.

In an interview with NewsDay Life & Style yesterday, Chikomo said he was optimistic that his forthcoming production would bring back his glory days in the music industry.

“I am hoping for a different story with this forthcoming album Step by Step, as I believe it has the ingredients to catapult me to greater heights and having learnt from previous blunders I will be making all necessary adjustments in terms of marketing the album with the help of my manager, Gift Benjamin,” he said.

“I will release the song Chengeta Moyo first as an appetiser to the album release. This is a love song in which I am encouraging couples, married people to respect love as a sacred thing before God. Relationships between couples must be well-guarded to avoid cheating that might lead to their collapse.”

Chikomo said he was open to partnerships as he is looking for financial support to shot videos of the album so that people could enjoy his music in the comforts of their homes in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, adding that he got financial assistance from fellow musician Obert Mazivisa for the album production.

Before the COVID-19 outbreak, Chikomo said they had managed to take their music to Mashonaland West province through several live shows where he shared the stage with renowned artistes including sungura maestro Alick Macheso, Progress Chipfumo, Andy Muridzo, gospel singers Blessing Shumba, Fungisai Zvakavapano-Mashavave and Charles and Olivia Charamba.

Chikomo recorded his debut album titled Thula Africa in 2005 at Gramma Records after he came second during the Chibuku Road to Fame competition. He took a five-year break as he made a return with his second album Chikonzero in 2010.
The two albums, however, fell short on marketing and as a result they did not do well.

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