FROM songs that touched on the rich history of the club to tunes that denigrate opponents, Bosso songs composed over the years are a reflection of the mood of the supporters at any given time, says the man who has seen it all in over 50 years.
Few people understand Highlanders songs or war cries, as he likes to call them, like Ndumiso Gumede.
Perhaps as a witty show-off to the new generation of Highlanders supporters that they have no grasp of the old Bosso war cries, Gumede — being the man who loves a good dance — stood up and asked a small crowd to join him in song.
The setting was the Highlanders clubhouse and the event, a celebration of the lives of Bosso players that have passed on.
Gumede opens the singing session with an old Bosso war cry and it’s not surprising that only a handful of the old guard that includes Lawrence “Lofty” Phiri” Douglas “British” Mloyi, Netsai “Super” Moyo, Josiah Nxumalo, Marko Ndlovu and even invited guest Gibson Homela join in.
The younger generation of Bosso supporters in attendance marvel at the older generation as they break into song and dance.
For the next four songs Gumede deliberately chooses tunes that were most famous in the 1970s and 80s and it’s evident from the looks of the old guard as they sing that a sense of nostalgia has hit them, taking them as far back as more than 40 years ago.
Later Gumede joins B-Metro Sport for a chat and we can’t help but ask how Bosso songs have evolved over the years.
And he takes us through an impromptu history lesson.
“Bosso songs, or war cries as I like to call them, that were composed in the 1970s and 80s mostly centred on the rich history of the club, where the club came from, its founding fathers and that sort of history.
“One of the songs that we sang just now talks about Highlanders being iqembu likaMatshobana loMzilikazi and it’s important to note that these songs were composed by the supporters themselves and made famous by the supporters,” said Gumede.
The former Highlanders chief executive officer, who has a rich history with Zimbabwean football, said some of the songs were a reflection of how Bosso supporters felt about their team at the time the tunes were composed.
“Take for instance the song Kayisoze ibulawe, it’s evident supporters felt the team was under attack from outside forces to destroy it but their message was that Bosso is a strong institution that will always stand the test of time,” he said.
Coming to the new generation of songs that denigrate opponents and are somewhat viewed as offensive, Gumede is of the opinion that supporters will always express their feelings through songs at Barbourfields Stadium.
“Offensive or not, today’s songs will always be a reminder of what the new generation of Bosso fans feel about their team and the prevailing situations that confront them on a daily basis,” he added.
Earlier in the day, former Bosso players had embarked on a tour of graves of departed teammates such as Mercedes Sibanda, Titus Majola, Adam Ndlovu, Bekithemba Nkiwane and others to pay their respects.