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Reflecting on identity and roots in Ishan’s Kure

Trust Mauyasva
Written by Trust Mauyasva

With its attainment of over a million YouTube views, “Kure” a hit offering by the young Ishan featuring Ti Gonzi has proved to be heavyweight contender for glory for the year 2019. The arrival of “Kure” was marked by interest and attention as the production was of great quality and the delivery by the duo was remarkable.
The audience was captivated by the easy sing along to chorus, the message within the lyrics of Ishan and of course the ever entertaining verse by Ti Gonzi. Everywhere at anytime the song has been a crowd favourite being requested non stop and perhaps becoming the most requested song on the local airwaves.
Beyond its quality and popularity, the song “Kure” carries a powerful message that could have been taken as a word from the wise old or maybe even the dearly departed.
Ishan opens up with a powerful rhetoric question that touches on identity and character. Identity in the song’s context predominantly depends on tradition and culture. Yet though with the evolving globe and cities becoming more metropolitan thereby cultures are intertwining and merging, one still maintains an identity through their culture.
One’s identity is quite more than a crest that marks their uniqueness from all they might be likened to or mistaken for. Therefore, a bare man without his own ways and culture mostly for the reason that he lost himself to please a world that he is unable to stand up to on the pedestal of his own identity is lost.
Such a canvas, painted by the well arranged poetic lyrics of Ishan seeks to spark recurring thought in one over their identity and the value of their culture. A conversation over this matter would no doubt be epic with the late Dr Vimbai Chivaura’s input as he was great man with profound enthusiasm over the issue of identity and culture.
The value of one looking back at where they have come from might remind the audience of one popular Shona proverb “Ziva kwaunobva kwaunoenda usiku” a basic reminder to always remember your roots where you have come from.
The importance of one’s roots especially in Africa has been a frequently emphasised issue that has characterised numerous African literary works. Iconic writer Dr Charles Mungoshi stressed on one’s need not to shun his culture and roots in “The Mountain” a short story from “Coming of the Dry Season”. Renowned writer had an almost similar idea as his work “Mission to Kala” focused on roots, heritage and basically remembering where you have come.
Visuals for “Kure” stand out and are in accord with the lyrics given the old Peugeot 404 model, the old bicycle and the attire the duo adorns. The video without the now popular flashy cars, watches and beautiful girls has still made a mark on the local music stage. The video’s rural setting does go a long way in re-enforcing the importance of remembering one’s roots.

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