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Winky D honours late drummer with first international award

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REGGAE-DANCEHALL sensation Winky D has paid homage to the late drummer Delroy Maripakwenda (pictured) after winning his first-ever International Reggae & World Music Award at a virtual ceremony held recently in Jamaica.

JONATHAN MBIRIYAMVEKA
Maripakwenda, who died last year due to a heart problem, played drums for Winky D’s backing group, Vigilance Band.

Winky D, also known as the Gafa President, won the Best African/Dancehall Entertainer Award ahead of the firm favourites, namely Ghanaians Shatta Wale and Stonebwoy, Nigerian Patoranking and fellow countryman Buffalo Souljah who was representing South Africa in the category.

The award was Winky D’s first major recognition from Jamaica, the cradle of reggae-dancehall music and it proved how much Zimbabwean reggae-dancehall has come of age.

In his acceptance speech, Winky D vowed to remain levelheaded in his career and thanked fans, whom he fondly calls Gafas.

The Ragga Musambo singer tweeted: “Your votes have counted! This accolade will not push me onto an ego trip, far from it: It makes me realise that l should always appreciate the simple details of life.
There is no act without an audience, as such l am forever indebted to all the Gafas and Gafaresses who sacrifice their time and hard-earned money to attend my shows.” 

The 38-year-old star also mentioned the late talented drummer Maripakwena aka Scara for his efforts during his live performances.

“For me, it’s a compromised act without good instrumentalists, so allow me to take time to big up the Vigital Band and, more importantly, honour the late uniquely talented ‘Scara the Drummer’. Hearty appreciation also goes to those who believed in my music from the day l started preaching the ordeal of the ghetto youths when it was still unfashionable to talk reality. I will admit the love we exchanged during live shows, l also can’t wait for a return to normalcy.”

According to the organisers of the awards, votes were based on music released between January 2020 and December 2020.

And also considered were the social relevance of the materials, originality and sales, the scope of local and national impact, quality of performances and stage appearances.

Winky D has over the years upstaged some international acts whenever they perform live in Zimbabwe.
He is loved not just for sellout shows but also polished performances.

His music identifies with the poor, the downtrodden, the ghetto masses who struggle with everyday challenges in a country where disposable incomes have been massively eroded, public infrastructure has collapsed, water and sanitation services are poor, while hunger and disease terrorise the population.

Winky D is one of the top three musicians in Zimbabwe, commanding up to 538 000 followers on his Facebook page and 115 000 subscribers on YouTube.

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