Reggae artist Lambani Dube is expected to hoist the Malawi flag high in a rare appearance at the 15th edition of the international reggae music festival, Mali Festi Reggae.
The artist in an interview confirmed that he will make his maiden appearance at the festival which will be held at the National Museum in Bamako, Mali. The event is expected to open on February 29.
“I will leave the country today for Mali and I am looking forward to this event.
“Like I indicated that this year I want to do great things musically and put Malawi on the map. It will be great to learn from artists from other countries at this event,” he said.
Lambani appears to have set his music career on a revival path after staying away from the limelight for long. Last month, he unveiled a new album Political Influence and a DVD compilation None But Jah.
He said he got the opportunity to perform at the festival through Empress Marie who connected him with the organisers of the event:
“I want to push hard musically this year. In August, I will make another appearance in Germany at a similar event,” said Lambani.
The Mali Festi Reggae will take place under the theme Survival inspired by legendary reggae artist Bob Marley’s song Survival and will be used to reflect on the current status of Mali as a country and the whole sub-region.
A local Malian publication Bamada.Net quoted one of the organisers radio host Mammy commenting on the theme of the festival: “Having started this festival in February, the month of Bob Marley’s birth, it would have been abnormal not to celebrate his 15th birthday.
“This choice is a combination of circumstances, the current situation of our country affects all sectors. It is, therefore, not easy to organise a festival without financial resources.”
Apart from the music performances, the event also has on its programme a musical conference, art exhibition and a documentary. Other countries to be represented are Senegal, Ivory Coast, United States of America and Belgium, among others.
The Mali Festi initiative was born from the celebration of Bob Marley’s 60th birthday in February 2005 organised by the Bob Marley-Rita Marley Foundation in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in collaboration with the African Union, the World Bank and Unicef.
Since then, the organisers adopted the date in the Malian cultural calendar to allow everyone to better understand the rasta philosophy through reggae music.