For man it takes a father’s death to step out of his shadow. But for Tongai Moyo’s son, Peter who is 23 the time is now. Peter has proved to be perfect replacement to lead Utakataka Express whenever his father cannot take to the stage. Dhewa is fighting against cancer.
Last weekend the young man led the band on a tour of Botswana when his father, who is battling cancer, was hospitalised for a brain tumour.
For Dhewa this might be a reason to smile as it will afford him time to rest as he battles his health condition.
In an interview with NewsDay Peter vowed to stand by his father.
He said he was solidly behind his father and the band and would always be there even in Dhewa’s absence.
“My father has never said anything about me taking over, but I will always be there for him as his son. Right now he is fit so I do not think there is anything to worry about,” reassured Peter.
For Zimbabwean music fans Dhewa’s situation might be reminiscent of Simon Chopper Chimbetu when he was incarcerated and had to leave his brother Briam in control.
Although the leader was not around the band continued with shows and was never dormant.
This can, however, be juxtaposed with the recent scenario where the late Cephas Mashakada’s band was inactive during his time of illness.
Maybe he had faith that he would recover and be back in action. Yet unfortunately that was not to be.
It was only after Mashakada’s demise that the world and the band itself realised that Shemu Mashonganyika aka Chibage or Mapudege, could fit into the gap that the burly singer left.
Peter said he could now perfectly play the lead and rhythm guitars on most of his father’s songs.
From an observer’s view, this could be the best development that has happened to Dhewa this year.
Everyone will agree the man needs to rest. The work load he has been taking in recent months has been too heavy for his condition.
But the steadfast musician has alternated between the hospital bed and the stage in an amazing way.
Just after recovering from last weekend’s condition, the musician has announced that he will go on stage this weekend.
Tonight he stages a show with Sulumani Chimbetu at City Sports Bar in the city centre and his fans are probably eager to see how the musician will perform a few days after his condition was described as critical.