When two creative minds in the names of Blessings Nqo Nkomo and Jonathan Wines combined it resulted in a fusion of imbube and Western folk music.
The idea was a way of coming up with a distinguished kind of musical act, but for that to come to fruition, a band had to be formed as a way of justifying their collaboration and the Izethekeli Band was formed in December 2017.
For the ship to manoeuvre smoothly, a third part had to join the band and Roben Mlauzi also known as Mamozi was the right candidate to join Izethekeli, a name which loosely translates to visitors.
From his base in Austria, Blessings Nqo Nkomo said creative similarities between him and Wines led to the establishment of Izethekeli.
“Izethekeli Band was founded by myself and Jonathan Wises in December 2017 after being introduced through friends at an African festival held annually in Vienna Austria during August 2017.
“After both of us shared similar ideas for future projects and alike interests musically, we decided to meet officially and discuss what kind of developments we could work on together. After a small jam session and throwing some ideas around, Izethekeli Band was formed.
“Along the way, Roben Mlauzi soon joined us and the three of us became the face of the band.
“The name Izethekeli was derived from the fact that we are all visitors on this earth and the vision behind this band was to proudly showcase our rich cultural heritage to the world as Zimbabweans and most of all to bring all people together through a message of peace and hope,” said Nkomo.
Apart from Nkomo, Wines and Mlauzi, Izethekeli has a backing of four instrumentalists from different parts of Austria with another member coming from Burkina Faso, making the band have a completely diverse and contrasted backline. “We are backed by four well-seasoned musicians playing bass guitar, rhythm guitar, drums and percussion.
“In total the band is officially a seven-piece group but occasionally, we sometimes invite another great guitarist who comes from Congo.
“We decided to have different people from different backgrounds because our music is a mixture of western folk music and Imbube which is the main structure our lyrics are built from.
“As a multi-ethnic group, joining forces together has made us find common ground and we have been able to perform our music without any difficulties,” said Nkomo.
This year, the group has released two singles titled Your Sugar and Think About the Children and they are available on all streaming platforms.
Apart from that, Izethekeli is working on an album while performing at events, festivals and theatres.
They are also invited to perform at the Kasumama African Festival whose stage has been graced by many world-renowned musicians like Ladysmith Black Mambazo, the late Oliver Mtukudzi, Hugh Masekela and Jeys Marabini.