My door is open: King Tazvida

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Chazezesa Challengers frontman King Tazvida yesterday dismissed claims by the group’s former members that he shut the door on them, saying he was willing to work with whoever was interested in reviving the band and the Simple Music of Kanindo Origin (Smoko) that made his late uncle Fanuel “System” Tazvida a household name in the country.

This was after former band member Leeroy Lunga, told NewsDay Life & Style last week that the Tazvidas were not keen on working with him and other former band members because of family misunderstandings. Lunga said he and former band members Obert Gomba and Lucky Mumiriki had the blueprint of the original sound improvised by System.

Gomba is now based in South Africa while Mumiriki is no longer active in music.

The 32-year-old Chazezesa Challengers lead vocalist and composer, King — a son to the late System’s sister, but who was raised by the Tazvidas — said differences and divisions started after the death of Peter in 2002 when he was only 15.

“The situation in Chazezesa Challengers was very good, but divisions started soon after the death of Peter (Tazvida, who had taken over after System’s death). The senior band members failed to unite,” he said.

“I have tried my best to reach out to the surviving members of the band, but what happens is they don’t keep their promises and as a result I end up working with whatever I have at my disposal for the good of Smoko music. As the situation stands I have no problem with them at all. I now await them maybe to come with a willing heart.”

The band at one time tried to unite in 2017, but the reunification failed due to deep-seated differences after a promoter Johannes Marisa had tried to bring them together.

King said he appreciated the need to unite the band for the good of Smoko fans.

“I am very much aware that Leeroy Lunga and Lucky Mumiriki, whose expertise is very important, are needed because they are the ones who can bring out the original sound of Smoko. The band at one time reunited, but they all lost love following the coming in of Isaac (another of System’s younger brothers), but I don’t know why?” King said.

King currently has two albums — Moto Tokuchidzira and Zimbe Remoto featuring Isaac — under his belt, but said he relied on hired instruments as the whereabouts of those used by his brothers were unknown.

A new-look Chazezesa Challengers now has Joseph Malovers and Eddie Mukwasini (bass guitar), Simbarashe Mtombeni (rhythm guitar), Innocent Sakala (lead guitar) and William Sate (drums) while King does lead vocals backed by Phineas Galick and Tawanda.

Chazezesa Challengers were once a force to reckon with in the sungura circles during the days of System and Peter.