THE ALIEN Winky D un­packs GafaFuti

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Gender/worldwide - Bruce Ndlovu

Ever since he started the long jour­ney to ce­ment his name on the Zim­bab­wean mu­sic scene, Winky D has used a num­ber of aliases.

If one could alter their birth cer­tifi­cates and put names of their choice on that pre­cious pa­per, Winky D’s doc­u­ment would be a mess.

Born Wal­lace Chiru­miko in 1983, the chanter has at var­i­ous points been known as Wicked DJ, The Don, The Big­man, Messi weReg­gae, The Ninja Pres­i­dent and more re­cently he has been known as the lead­ing pro­po­nent of his self de­fined Gafa Life­style.

It is a life­style which Zim­bab­weans are still putting to­gether piece by piece, with each re­lease shining the light on the minute com­part­ments that make up the life of the man whose voice has pe­ri­od­i­cally de­liv­ered heaven over crisp beats and in­stru­ments over the last few years.

Over the last half decade or so, Winky D has dom­i­nated the charts, been in­volved in squab­bles with com­peti­tors, won the grudg­ing praise of the harsh­est of crit­ics and em­bar­rassed for­eign acts when they thought they could boss the stage on his turf.

But what hap­pens when a per­former has seem­ingly done it all? What hap­pens when a per­former has run through so many iden­ti­ties that even his fans might have a hard time iden­ti­fy­ing which ver­sion of him they like the most?

Is it Big­man, the fool­hardy bed­room ma­rauder who had a girl plead­ing with her fa­ther not to ex­act vi­o­lence on him? Or is it Messi WeReg­gae, who was seem­ingly able to be­wil­der both fan and foe by chis­elling out hits from ev­ery melody that jumped into the smithy that is his fer­tile mind.

While it is un­clear whether his con­veyor belt of iden­ti­ties on earth has run out, it is ev­i­dent that Winky D has de­cided to change tact. Bet­ter yet, he has de­cided to change plan­ets.

De­but­ing his new al­bum, Gafa Futi, on ZiFM Stereo on Thurs­day night, the Kam­buzuma born chanter made an ap­pear­ance in studio dis­guised in an alien suit that wouldn’t have looked out of place on the set of Hol­ly­wood Sci-Fi flick.

But this was not Star Wars, it was Winky in studio to de­crypt mes­sages from his al­bum.

The Ninja Pres­i­dent is gone and Winky has shapeshifted into a form that does not be­long to this planet. The suit was ef­fec­tive par­tic­u­larly for ra­dio lis­ten­ers as his voice, muf­fled by his rub­ber suit, gave the ef­fect that the chanter was in­ter­act­ing with his in­ter­view­ers from some­where in outer space.

Amid spo­radic chants of Ex­tra Ter­res­trial, Winky pointed out that the pre­miere of the al­bum was not by mere co­in­ci­dence, as the nu­mer­i­cal date of the al­bum’s de­but, 6-10-2016, gave you the same date when turned back­wards.

Such un­flinch­ing at­ten­tion to minute de­tail, he pointed out, showed that while he is trapped on earth phys­i­cally, his mind and thoughts re­side in far­away cos­mos.

“The imag­i­na­tion is from be­yond earth. As a hu­man be­ing, you can­not think like that. So to­day is a spe­cial day. We’re launch­ing a spe­cial al­bum,” he said.

Af­ter the run­away suc­cess of the Gafa Life Kicks Tape, Winky pointed out that there was pres­sure on him, an artiste who did not want his craft to stag­nate, to repli­cate the songs that had ruled playlists over the fes­tive sea­son last year.

“When you do some­thing, peo­ple al­ways say do it again. Like last year around this time, ev­ery­one was in Gafa mood. I felt that peo­ple were re­quest­ing the Gafa mood again and so I said no prob­lem, Gafa Futi. So it’s Gafa Futi, ex­tra ter­res­trial,” he said.

The chanter went on to ex­plain why, armed only with his lyrics, he had rode Oskid’s pro­duc­tion straight out of the planet on his lat­est ef­fort.

“The med­i­ta­tion is from be­yond hu­man imag­i­na­tion. As a hu­man be­ing, you can’t think like that. Ev­ery­thing is from be­yond the cir­cum­fer­ence of earth.

“For in­stance, Winky D along­side Oliver Mtukudzi. I’ve seen peo­ple cry­ing in front of me. But you don’t know what’s touch­ing in the song. They’re fre­quen­cies that are there that you’ll never see. Fre­quen­cies that are trig­ger­ing emo­tions. So I Winky D, as the ex­tra ter­res­trial, have come to twist those fre­quen­cies into words.”

Over the last few years Winky, who trans­verses the length and breadth of the coun­try with his band in tow, has strived for mu­si­cal growth as he seeks to ban­ish the stereo­type that young mu­si­cians are clue­less with­out the com­put­ers and ma­chines from which they make their hits.

While he has al­luded to the fact that his voice, which he twists and bends to craft ir­re­sistible melodies and verses, is an in­stru­ment on its own, on Thurs­day he ac­knowl­edged that the mu­si­cal back­drop pro­vided by the likes of Oskid would make an im­pact on its own.

“Even if I re­move the lyrics and you’re left with the in­stru­men­ta­tion and the back­ing vo­cals, it’ll trig­ger the emo­tions be­cause the fre­quen­cies are still in ex­is­tence. What I was merely do­ing was putting the fre­quency into words that you can un­der­stand.”

Winky also took the op­por­tu­nity to point out that while his mind might have taken res­i­dence in outer space, he was still aware of the plight and strug­gles of the much lamented ghetto youths. Word had reached the ex­tra ter­res­trial chanter’s ear that ghetto cit­i­zens of his king­dom might be per­plexed by his al­bum sleeve, which is filled with cryptic dig­its.

“I have seen a lot of peo­ple talk­ing about the sleeve. They say the sleeve has num­bers and they say ghetto youths don’t un­der­stand these num­bers on there.

“Point of cor­rec­tion, the ghetto youths un­der­stand be­cause with the ghetto, we’ve physi­cists, doc­tors and lawyers. I wouldn’t take some­one who says ghetto youths won’t un­der­stand se­ri­ous be­cause that’s wrong. You can say the ma­jor­ity don’t un­der­stand and I will agree be­cause yes we are to­gether there,” he said.

While dur­ing the al­bum mak­ing process Winky D might have en­vi­sioned him­self in outer space, last week a prob­lem emerged on earth which no doubt de­manded his at­ten­tion. The night would not have been com­plete with­out men­tion of Winky’s on­go­ing feud with Oskid, a tiff that threat­ened the re­lease of the highly an­tic­i­pated al­bum and a part­ner­ship that has brought count­less hits in lit­tle over a year. Winky threw the cat among the pi­geons when he sug­gested he and Oskid never had the agree­ment the pro­ducer claimed they had.

“What­ever is hap­pen­ing now is what was agreed on the con­tract. To my sur­prise, he’s rush­ing to ra­dio, so­cial me­dia and news­pa­pers. If some­one breached a con­tract, you should take le­gal ac­tion be­cause that’s where you can get jus­tice.”

Winky D the Gafa in the studio

Winky D the Gafa flfl anked by ZiJudge­ment Yard hosts DJ Fl­e­vah and Ether­ton B

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