NEWS | MUSIC
Bizzare! Beyond belief!
By Anderson Manning’s Gowa
Locally inspired by himself, and on the global pitch moved by the incarcerated murder convict, on a life imprisonment dosage, Don Dada Adijah Palmer aka Vybz Kartel whom he regards as a music god, pops out the Hutu Empire kingpin, Prudent Armzy.
The only marked difference between Vybz and Armzy is that the latter is muscular, heavily built-up like some heavy weight pugilist ready to defeat a fierce opponent in the very few seconds of a 12 round title bout.
Born Thocco Banda, a professional journalist-cum-dancehall musician whose musical journey exploded on lighter note, just a year to the millennium, in 1999 while recording on radio cassettes.
By then, the hard-hitting dancehall kingpin with positive lyrical composition about life did not really know music.
“I just had the capability of dropping crazy rap bars”, Speaks out Armzy with strong dancehall like gestures.
In 2010, it is when he made a big jump into serious dancehall lyrical composition under the tutelage of Vybz Kartel, not physically but “dancehallically”.
His music prowess was catapulted further when he went to Kings Foundation School. Here, a whole dormitory could bust into a quantum musical feat as “a majority of our hostel lads could do freestyles with water bucket beats after prep,” he recalls.
The likes of the Malawian RnB czar, Kell Kay, were there at Kings sharing musical moments with Captain Armzy.
The expedition into music did not end at Kings. Armzy made further strides at Rose Garden where “I also used to write lyrics & sale them to guys. We recorded our first track titled “Tatopa” on Anger management riddim at Step up records. Tatopa became an anthem at Rose Garden and far beyond.” Says the soft spoken yet tough Armzy.
After kissing the Hip-hop world for a major part of his flight into music goodbye, Armzy thought of jumping into Dancehall; a not so popular genre (by then) but as usual, determination and focus reigned supreme.
His journey into the dancehall genre was not all that rosy as his friends emptied some nasty insults on him for abandoning hip-hop “come on niggaz, he won’t make it up, that marks his musical death. Dropping hip-hop for dancehall is the last nail on Armzy’s casket” his fellows dissed him in their circles.
Only to make a “follow the leader adage” into Armzy’s new found land later. What a kingpin!
Armzy, who is currently the Managing Director of Prudent Promotions, a marketing and advertising company stationed in Blantyre, and Zomba says, “My wish to stamp foot on the dancehall stage was towed further on my stay in the capital of northern Malawi, Mzuzu”.
Adds he, “It is in Mzuzu where I recorded a lot of songs like Mzanga, gado, kathwani, badmind, nah laugh, shake and several other dancehall hits which became household tunes around the city and beyond.
And you know wha?t I was the first dancehall artist to work with the now famous DJ Kenlo. I also shot videos of the same songs which were regularly played on MBC-Tv & other TV stations,” narrates Armzy with great conviction and an authoritative husky voice.
Unrealistic as it may seem to haters and doubters, the ever pushy Armzy is hell prepared to amaze and mesmerize M-dubs with a tantalizing dancehall project.
He is about to fish out a 50 track album. Yes! 50 tracks of inspiring dancehall tick-tackers with positive lyrical content of a determined ghetto youth.
“My plans are to release a 50 track album and a DVD. All the songs are ready; they are just awaiting mastering,” reveals he.
That is not all. “Back in 2016, I was geared to release a 20 track album with all the songs and artwork ready but it was hindered by a producer that I trusted to do the mastering because of bad mind, man,” says Armzy, head-on to face the 50 track release challenge.
As a matter of flinging the ambitious project into motion, Armzy has fished out a music video titled “Give Thanks” which was shot by Mafioso and the audio was done by the Zomba based electromagnetic producer, Postnegative, the Undibelekele mwana don.
Sniffing into what “Giving Thanks” is all about, Armzy articulates “it’s an inspirational song aimed at motivating people to always give thanks for life despite all the problems they encounter because life is so precious.
It also encourages hard work and bemoans greediness by most bosses who maltreat their hardworking employees. Give Thanks also encourages people to stand up for the truth no matter the circumstance because only the truth shall set one free.”
Armzy further augments that “my main focus now is music videos because they push a lot, especially with the mushrooming of digital satellites and Television stations”.
Currently signed under City Electronics which is the home of quality affordable electronics in Zomba, Armzy is planning to do a country wide tour, besides performing as a regular artist for Vogue club in Zomba City.
With an immense experience having worked with producers like Postnegative, Jay-Jay C, Raidnation, DJ Kenlo, Twiggy, Blak mofiaz, Dreh, Step up records, Audio fix, and numerous other notable producers on M-Dubs, Armzy is bound for greater good.
The dancehall killer, is, by all means geared to success. Now, as M-Dubz awaits the historical release of the 50-track album, Armzy has a word or two to fellow urban music artists locally, “Know that music is a game, so you must play to win. Stay focused and believe in your talent. Let no man underrate you. The differences in our faces is also the difference in the multiplicities of talents that Jah-Jah bestowed in us. We can’t be equal. No way man,” he advises.