Wahengo Refines Shambo 40 Seconds Ago

After long absence from the Namibian stage, Jackson Wahengo was back on stage, but this time as a solo act, to launch his debut album, Akutu Hewa.

The album is not a long departure from his previous work while performing as guitarist with his brothers in the Mighty Dread band. It is an album of Shambo music genre only the shambo music on this album has been refined to express the growth of Wahengo – or Mbwayakalola as he is known – as an artist.

The tracks, such as Kalomoh, which is originally a song by legendary folk singer, the late Kwela, remains discernible to the original song. Yet the blend is groovy and reflects the global influences on Wahengo’s music career, to an extent that many in the Warehouse Theatre took to the floor to dance.

The entire album is, as Wahengo’s public relation machinery churned out prior to the album launch, “a horde of influences performed in compositions full of layers and detail that in a groovy way come together as one, reflecting experience and depth.”

Folk singers of the late 1970s such as Nanghilinashima, Kwela, Buti Simoni have their songs coming out clearly in the albums, along with other poetic lyrics. Jackson Wahengo is Namibian and has been based in Geneva, Switzerland since 2008. His story, however, begins in Ndola, Zambia, where he was born as an exile-Namibian in 1978. He spent his childhood years in Angola and Congo (Brazzaville) until Namibia gained independence in 1990. He grew up in a musical family with an early passion for song and harmony, guided by the freedom songs he sung for his country in the refugee camps of Angola.

He started strumming the guitar as a teenager and later schooled as a jazz guitarist, honing his skills at the University of Cape Town. Jackson has played with numerous bands in Namibia and South Africa and at a number of prominent festivals, including the well-renowned Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.

Source : New Era