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Tongai Moyo

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Tongai Moyo
Tongai Moyo, Zimbabwean Musician
Tongai Moyo
Born (1968-03-12)March 12, 1968
Kwekwe
Died October 15, 2011(2011-10-15) (aged 43) (death date then birth date)
Harare
Cause of death cancer
Resting place Kwekwe
Residence Zimbabwe
Occupation
  • Vocalist
  • Songwriter
  • Guitarist
Organization Utakataka Express
Known for Sungura Music
Home town Kwekwe
Successor Peter Moyo
Spouse(s) Miniehle Mukweli
Children Peter Moyo

Tongai Moyo was an award winning popular legendary Sungura icon, who was best known for his flamboyant lifestyle. Moyo became popular in the early 1990s after releasing smash hits such as 'Samanyemba' and 'Mudzimu weshiri' with his band Utakataka Express.

Background

Moyo was born on the 12th of March in 1968 in Kwekwe. He passed away on 15 October 2011. He was married to Miniehle Mukweli and had six children namely Natasha, Nicole, Obert (Tongai Jnr), Tanaka and Nyasha and Peter Moyo.[1]

Music career

The talented musician started his career in 1988 in his home-town Kwekwe. To honor his craft, the 'Muchinamuhombe' singer, played in numerous bands and eventually joined Shirichena Jazz Band as a session musician, and helped the band to release two albums and a single. The most popular was "Ndoita Zvangu Ndega" which was released in 1991 Moyo was virtually known by then. He went on to create his own band the Utakataka Express after which he released his first solo album, 'Vimbo' in 1996. The album earned Moyo a name in the music industry, which was dominated by the likes of Nicholas Zakaria and Alick Macheso who sang the same genre. Since then, he never looked back and went on to relese 14 albums to his credit.[2] The album "Naye" saw Dhewa hogging the limelight with his chart topper "Nemumvura Mese" which earned him two Zimbabwe Music Awards (ZIMA). At the time of his death, Moyo had just released his 14th album 'Toita basa'.

International Tours

Dhewa travelled the length and breadth of the world giving his music fans a musical therapy. He toured the United Kingdom, USA, Botswana and South Africa at times in the company of Oliver Mtukudzi and Alick Macheso.

Discography

  • Mudzimu Weshiri (2001)
  • Samayemba (2002)
  • Chingwa (2003)
  • Naye (2005) [3]
  • Pakanaka Dhewa (2006)

Awards

He won several Zimbabwe Music Awards (ZIMA) and National Arts Merit Awards NAMA). His hit song 'Naye' clinched two ZIMA awards in 2005.

Controversy

The man was never short of controversy. In 2003, he courted the public ire, after he proceeded with his maiden UK tour yet he had received news of the death of his father. The Igwe defendd himself saying he needed to work for the money that the UK promoter had given him which had all gone towards his father's medication. Five years down the line, Dhewa was at it again when in 2008 reportedly said Macheso was no match for him because he was uneducated. This created a war of words and bitter rivalry that would not end despite efforts by several promoters to bring them together through joint shows.[4]

HIV Claims

He was once rumoured to be HIV positive as his health deteriorated. He was forced to undergo a public HIV test to kill off rumours that he was in fact battling the illness. The singer is said to have tested negative for the HIV virus according to the journalist who accompanied him.[5]

Emotional Send Off

Moyo died at the age of 43 on after succumbing to Hodgkin’s lymphoma. His popularity was evident even at his burial as over 15 000 people packed into Mbizo Stadium in Kwekwe to pay their last respects to him. An estimated 10 000 also graced the funeral. The funeral turned to be a celebration of his life as musicians took to stage to perfom. Somandla Ndebele, Macheso, Leonard Zhakata, Tedius Matsito and Chase Skuza performed at the burial. They did a rendition of the song “Zvinoita Murudo”. Monica Chikasha performed her “Sele” dance routine, which was a common feature at Dhewa’s live shows.[6]

Tongai Moyo's Battle with Cancer
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References

  1. When is daddy coming back? Tongai Moyo's children keep asking mum, 'My Zimbabwe', Published: 15 Nov 2011, Retrieved: 2 Apr 2014
  2. Kudakwashe Gwabanayi The late Tongai ‘Dhewa’ Moyo in pictures, 'Nehanda Radio', Published: 16 Oct 2011, Retrieved: 2 Apr 2014
  3. TONGAI MOYO & UTAKATAKA EXPRESS. Discography, 'Sternmusic', Retrieved: 2 Apr 2014
  4. Tongai Moyo dances in his own funeral, 'Herald', Published: 17 Oct 2011 , Retrieved 2 Apr 2014
  5. Music legend Tongai Moyo dies, 'Nehanda Radio', Published: 16 Oct 2011, Retrieved: 2 Apr 2014
  6. Tongai Moyo funeral and burial pictures, Publishd:19 Oct 2011, Retrieved:2 Apr 2014