An Up-close Experience With McKnife's Talent

 By Tawanda Chari 

Born Tinashe Mubanga, McKnife is a Zimbabwean Hip-Hop Award winner, and one of the best producers out of Zimbabwe to produce music which can be consumed by ears on an international scale. McKnife is also a seasoned rapper and songwriter. The beauty of McKnife’s talent is his ability to produce his own beats, arrange, write, and master his own music material – an asset only a few artists in the world can muster. We got to him for an interview about his career in music.

Mcknife zimbabwe


ZimSphere: Who is McKnife? What’s your background?

McKnife: McKnife is a Zimbabwean music producer/rapper born and raised in the streets of Harare. Although he was a very energetic all-round athlete in his school days winning various awards ranging from cricket, football, volleyball, rugby, and several other sports he finally settled for music at a later stage in life.


ZimSphere: How have you developed your career - how and when did you start music? What made you decide that you should make music?

McKnife: I took music lessons back in high school and grew fond of music thereon. Although I started out as a rapper, I transitioned to the beat production and music production side.


ZimSphere: How would you describe the music that you typically create?

McKnife: When I started it was purely Hip Hop based but I have outgrown that and just create almost anything although I major in indigenous based sounds now. So even if its Hip Hop, you can still feel that African vibe to it.


ZimSphere: Who would you most like to collaborate with?

McKnife: At this present moment I wouldn't mind working with Burna Boy.


ZimSphere: What would you be doing right now if it was not for your music career?

McKnife: I would probably be stuck in an office somewhere on a 9-5. I was in a Sciences class back in high school, so I would like to believe had music not been an option, I would have definitely taken a career along those lines.


ZimSphere: Where have you performed? What are your favourite and least favourite venues?

McKnife: I have performed countless times with BOTY Africa finals back in 2012 probably being the most notable show on a continental level. I've also graced the 7Arts theatre in Avondale countless times and various shows and award shows in the country. I wouldn't say I have a least favourite venue as connecting with the people is what matters most.


ZimSphere: How do you feel the Internet has impacted the music business?

McKnife: The internet definitely had a huge impact on the show business as a whole both positively and negatively. I believe the internet has made it easier to market music especially for independent musicians but at the same time has shortened the life span of a song, EP or album as people move on so quick. Compared to the 90's and early 2000's music fades quick now because the market is flooded.


ZimSphere: If you could change anything about the Zimbabwean music industry, what would it be?

McKnife: I would say structures, music in Zimbabwe lacks proper structures and channels hence it's not as profitable as in other parts of the world.


ZimSphere: Any words for people that do not know who you are or your craft?

McKnife: Well, they can check it out for themselves, I believe the work should speak for itself. Follow @mcknife_zw across all social media platforms. Also follow my record label @hitmusicempire.

 Just to get to understand more.


ZimSphere: Should we expect a full-length project soon?

McKnife: Unfortunately, I retired from putting out music this year as I plan on focusing more on the production side of things. I feel I have offered the best of me so it's time I tried help the young ones out there that also have dreams. My final studio album THESIS is available across all major music stores which include Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal etc. You can also stream other projects I have worked in throughout the years I have been active on those same platforms.


ZimSphere: Your covid-19 message?

McKnife: Stay safe, we have lost so many good souls this year it would be tragic to lose more. Also, do not forget to pray.


The Hit Music Empire star recently released Kurauone (Grow Up and You Will See) with D - MIC an Afro pop sounding song about the hardships of adulthood, a growing mind, maturity and learning the realities of the world and everything it has to offer.

Get McKnife's music via this Youtube link.

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