Emmanuel Mari, a rising gospel music giant
By Byron Mutingwende
God loves people and so for Emmanuel Mari, the gospel musical journey started at an early age and from humble beginnings is set to scale greater heights.
Mari was born in Mutikizizi, under Chief Ziki’s area in Bikita on 8 April 1992. He did his primary education at Mutikizizi Primary and attended Kushingirira Secondary for high school.
“My music journey started before Crèche. At both primary and secondary schools, I was in the choir group. Soon after my A’ Level studies, I went to stay with my uncle, Zephenia Gomora in Mutare where I learned to play the keyboard and drums,” Mari said.
The young musician met his producer, Olin Anderson in Mutare and recorded Nguva Yatokwana, his first gospel single track, which has a South African music flavour.
“My favourite musician is Sipho Makabane. Nguva Yatokwana was my first opportunity to get into the music industry as an accomplished artist. After the first single track, I went on to record my first album in 2012 called Ndimi Nzira,” Mari said.
The gifted musician was prevented from releasing the album by financial constraints despite his attempt to look for employment in South Africa. He only managed to launch the album on 15 February 2016 at an event that attracted a legion of fans at the Prayer Centre and Deliverance Ministry Church in Mkoba, Gweru.
“The album is being played by popular radio stations like StarFM, Radio Zimbabwe, National FM and Ya FM. I have held successful shows in Masvingo, Mutare and Zvishavane, just to mention a few.”
The musician pays tribute to fellow gospel artist, Blessing Shumba, whom he has collaborated with at various shows. He bemoaned an increase in piracy for stalling the development of upcoming musicians.
He urged the Zimbabwe Music Rights Association (ZIMURA) to upscale its anti-piracy drive and impose deterrent measures against offenders. By the end of November 2017, Mari promised fans a new scorcher called “Winner” which encourages Christians to declare victory over all life situations.