Rusike Brothers
Rusike Brothers
Background information
Years active1970s - 1990s

The Rusike Brothers were a legendary Zimbabwean music group who popularised disco music in the 1980s. The group rose to national stardom with the hit 'Saturday Night' which became a number one hit. The group is best known the famous "Ngwerengwere Sadza" advert, which showed on ZTV in the 1980s and early 1990s.


The group consisted of five siblings Tawanda, Phillip, Abby, Collin and Kelly. They were born to Janet and Abiathar Rusike. The latter was a son of a Methodist reverend, Matthew Rusike who founded the Matthew Rusike Children’s Home in Harare. The siblings grew up in Zambia before independence.

Music career

The siblings were born in a musical family were their mother Janet was a member of the Methodist church choir. Their father was a member of the Boogie Woogie Songs Stars, a township outfit that played in the early 60s. To add to that their cousin Brian Rusike was also a talented musician who left a mark in the music industry. Hailing from this background, the Rusike Brothers started singing at school. They were part of the school choir were they took part in musical competitions in the 1970s. The group was formed in 1978 in Lusaka, Zambia. At that time the outfit consisted of three, Tawanda, Phillip and Abby, aged between 3 and 12. They later became five when their twin brothers Collin and Kelly joined them. The popular siblings did their first recording was Saturday Night in 1980. The song was a massive hit not only in Zimbabwe but in the whole region.[1] The single opened opportunities for the group that saw them sharing the stage with US musician Taj Mahal during his Zambian tour. The popular outfit returned home in 1980 signed a recording deal with Steve Roskilly and Martin Norris of the Shed Studios in Harare. Under this label, they went on to release another single 'Heartache'.

In mid 80s Andy Brown, Temba Gumbo and Victor Duarte joined the group that toured the country. Their star continued to shine and they wrote, talented Rozalla Miller's hits 'Party Nights' and 'Forever'. The group then recorded their first album 'Rhythm of our Hearts' in 1988. The album carried songs in English, Shona, Zulu and Swahili. The popular song on the album was 'Cecilia'. The latter featured on the then Radio 3 now PowerFM's Hitpick for 12 weeks.[2] The band have not released anything new for ages as the members are distant. They are only three members left as Kelly went to become a member of the Jazz Invitation while Colin went overseas.


The bothers were one of the first zimbabwean musicians to get endorsements that saw them feature in advertisements. They featured in the 'Merlin Towels' advet in 1986 and the popular 'Ngwerewere' (1991).[3]

International Tours

The group wrote their own piece of history by being one of the first to perform outside the country. They embarked on a tour of the United Kingdom in 1992 playing in popular clubs and halls. They also worked with European record labels such as Red Bus Studios.



Rusdike Brothers in a Ngwerewere product advert


  1. Wonder Guchu, [ Rusike Brothers pacesetters], 'Intimate with Zim Musicians', Published: 22 Jan 2012, Retrieved: 16 Apr 2014
  2. Fred Zindi, Where is Colin Rusike?, 'Kwayedza', Published: 6 Jun 2011, Retrieved: 16 Apr 2014
  3. Zimbo Jam Network , Rusike Daughter Carries the Music Forward, 'Zimbo Jam', Published:3 Apr, Retrieved: 16 Apr 2014