REFRESHING SOUNDS - The New Dancehall Force Called High Drive ZW

 By Takudzwa Kadzura and Tawanda Chari 

Dancehall music stormed the local music scene and a heavy influx of young artists made the genre formidable. In the last 7 years, a lot has transpired in dancehall including the historical Bhanditi and Conquering rivalry which many ascribe as the moment Zim Dancehall scaled its peak. 

Mc Texx and Dj Mambo 

Unlike other genres, dancehall immediately became the genre of choice in most high density suburbs with Mbare being the capital. The success is as a result of varying factors depending on how you look at it but the presence of DJ’s and MC’s is a pivotal aspect that holds the game intact. Try to recall how much the DJ mesmerized the dancefloor at your first night out and up to this day, African spinners in the names Black Supremacy and Judgement Yard are celebrated sounds that will always be remembered for laying the foundation.

Toasting is a style of lyrical chanting which — in Dancehall music and reggae — involves a deejay talking over a riddim ("rhythm"). The art of chanting over a rhythm is a bit ancient now and it was, maybe still faintly found in some African-based musical traditions. This traditional became quite popular in Jamaica in the early 1970s.

Although evolved to emcees chanting over actual songs now plus a Deejay on the turn tables, that tradition brought us Kenyan Black Supremacy Sounds, Zimbabwean sound masters, Judgement  Yard, it is that same tradition that has brought us High Drive Zimbabwe.

Mcee Texx and Dj Mambo the King are a force to be reckoned with. Not only are they extremely talented and entertaining, they're also very creative. Their new High drive FM YouTube channel is a platform for up and coming artists to get their careers boosted.

“The roots are strong and the foundation very firm” exclaims Vakudzei Tekere of the moniker Mcee Texx, a 21-year-old co-founder of High Drive Zw with his loyal fellow Dj Mambo. Managing to establish a sound that aims at spreading positive vibes through dancehall music is a fascinating story that brought back nostalgic memories of legends in the names of Gary B, Templeman and Etherton Beenie. The birth of High Drive Zw symbolizes the organic and genuine growth of dancehall through its ability to incorporate youngsters. We have witnessed the rise of countless youngsters in the genre but a full sound is a stretch we could never expect.

The team so far dropped Njema album mix, Zimdancehall Flashback Top 25 Countdown from the years 2009-2014, Meditation and the recent Rejected. Dj Mambo with flexible hands is one disk jockey you can comfortably trust with the deck because he is versatile when it comes to music genres. Their catchy slogan "infinity hype n sound" speaks volumes of ambition that goes beyond mixing songs. 

High Drive is organically powered by the fact that the two are Journalism and Mass Media students and to communicate themes and trends through dancehall is a commendable endeavor.

Speaking to ZimSphere, Mc Texx revealed, "This is just the beginning and despite lockdown restrictions we have managed to complete most of the work we will be releasing in 2020." 

He also explained using themes as their marketing gap and ambitions to take off where Judgment Yard has left since Etherton is his biggest inspiration. The music craze duo is hirable for functions that need entertainment, in life. 

The latest mixtape Rejected focuses on hits that have a deep message about heartbreaks and relationship regrets.

For the tapes by High Drive Zw, get them on this Audiomack link. 

For other tapes and artist interviews/interactions, find High Drive FM on their YouTube channel. 

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