AFRO-JAZZ sensation Pah Chihera and mbira princess Hope Masike have appealed for votes from their fans following their nominations in the 2016 Kora All Africa Music Awards scheduled to be held on March 20 in Namibia.
Pah Chihera was nominated in the Best Female Artiste Southern Africa category while Masike is vying for honours in the Best Traditional Female Artist category in what is regarded as Africa’s premier music event.
Although Pah Chihera sang her way into fame in the song Runonzi Rudo, which featured Prince Musarurwa, three years ago, it is the track, Musavadadire Varume, which has won her the Kora ticket.
She told NewsDay yesterday that she believed her fans will be pivotal in her quest for glory by voting for her.
Pah Chihera will be battle it out with Monea and Busiswa from South Africa, Elize Dentilinger from Namibia Bruna Tatiana from Angola and Lizha James from Mozambique.
Masike, on the other hand, will seek to outpace Abbey Lakew of Ethiopia, Namibia’s Erna Chimu, Sham Geshu from Eritrea, Cecil Kayirebwa of Rwanda and Dobet Gnabore of Ivory Coast with her song, Huyai Tinamate.
Masike said she felt honoured by her nomination and would be knocking on several doors in search of business partnerships, sponsorships, endorsements and brand ambassadorship deals as part of her campaign.
“We do not play music for awards, but when such recognition comes, it is a feather in the cap for where I have come as an artiste. I am proud to be a Zimbabwean at this time because the mbira is a distinctly Zimbabwean instrument and being its custodian on such a platform is wonderful,” Masike said.
The voting process opens from Monday and fans gunning for Masike have to sms Kora to +248984000 under a Kora code 58 while those backing Pah Chihera text Kora code 78 to the same number.
The late Tendai Mupfurutsa was the first Zimbabwean musician to be nominated for a Kora award in 1997 while Oliver Mtukudzi won it under the Best Arrangement category in 2002 for the song Ndakuvara while jazz crooner Tanga Wekwa Sando was also nominated in 2005.