Rhumba music might have lost its popularity in Malawi, but for Akitivi real name Mike Yasini, the genre still has a future.
Despite the confidence, the artist had to taste the waters with a release of singles and says the future is promising. Akitivi launched his music career in 2015.
He became an overnight sensation with the release of Cha Abambo which features veteran dancer Oliver Akimu in its video.
The track’s title is shared with a popular local puff snack.
Subsequent singles, Ndilira Nthawi Yoyamba and Pulambala have been enjoying airtime on local radios stations. Titled Pulambala, the debut album hit the airwaves last week.
“I am happy that the album is doing well since its release. It has been playing on most radio stations and the response is motivating,” he said.
Akitivi, who has collaborated with both local and foreign artists, says this has given the debut diversity. Artists featuring in the album include Lulu, Martse, Wendy Harawa and Zambia’s star GJB of the Kandolo fame.
GJB features in Akadzakudalitsa and rapper Martse is featured in Ndapata while Lulu’s voice is found in Christina. Other songs are Ndineneletu and Ndilira.
Akitivi signed with Mathumela Music Company owned by Lulu.
In a separate interview, Lulu said the album has the potential to do well.
“My simple analysis of the album is that he is new in the industry, but his compositions have depth. What I like more about him is that he has taken his own style. When you choose to be different, chances to make it become high,” he said.
Akitivi says he is inspired by the likes of Khoffi Olamide, Pepe Kale or Empire Bakuba, who have made it big with the genre.