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Oliver Mtukudzi
Oliver Mtukudzi

Annual NYC world music festival globalFEST, whose name was recently borrowed for a much bigger one-off event in Central Park, have announced the lineup for their 2013 festival which will go down on all three stages at Webster Hall on January 13. The lineup, now complete, includes A Tribe Called Red (Canada), Christine Salem (Reunion), Fatoumata Diawara (Mali), Kayhan Kalhor and Erdal Erzincan (Iran/Turkey), La Santa Cecilia (Los Angeles, US), La Shica (Spain), Lo'Jo (France), Martha Redbone Roots Project (USA), Mucca Pazza (Chicago, US), Parno Graszt (Hungary), Stephane Wrembel and his Band (New York, US).. Tickets for the festival are on sale now.

NY Times reports that the organizers have also added Oliver Mtukudzi, "one of Zimbabwe's leading songwriters who created a signature sound out of several African styles," as a headliner for the event. The Times writes:

A veteran singer who began his career in 1977 in the band Wagon Wheels, Mr. Mtukudzi, 60, blends styles from across southern Africa and beyond without loosing the modal threads of Zimbabwean roots music. He possesses a deep, gutsy voice and writes about the daily struggles of people in his homeland, accompanying himself with hypnotic guitar lines.

Unlike his old Wagon Wheels bandmate Thomas Mapfumo, Mr. Mtukudzi tends to shy away from direct political commentary about the Mugabe regime. Still, some of his songs have been interpreted as allegorical protests. In "Ndakuvara," some saw the story about an ox hurting a farmer as a condemnation of political violence. And his single "Wasakara,' which means "You're Getting Old," has been seen by many in Zimbabwe as a plea for Robert Mugabe to retire. Bonnie Raitt, who has recorded his songs, has likened his "raw, imploring vocals" to Otis Redding and Toots Hibbert.

You can check out an Oliver Mtukudzi video below.

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