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Voice of Angel Worshippers releases debut album

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A youth gospel group Voice Of Angel Worshippers (voAw) recently released their debut album, Moment of Reconciliation. The gospel album boasts 12 tracks that share the message of Christ and encourages people to get closer to God regardless of the pain they are experiencing.

The founder and leader of the group, Ke romilwe ke Modimo – real name Babogedi Binang, who was born and raised in Gantsi, explained to Vibe that all the songs were personally composed by team members except one,which they adopted from one of the legendary gospel singers Mpho Motlhasedi, titled, ‘Ka o kile wa nna motho’.

“We looked at the theme of the album and found the song to fit for a moment of reconciliation, but we modernised it to the current age,” he said. He also said that they only have one song in English and the rest are in our native languages; in Herero, Kalanga, Setswana and Shekgalagari. In Botswana we sing South African languages so voAw says we also can sing in our own languages provided the lyrical content of it is right,” he said.

Binang further said that they are inspired by the faith they have in God. The group, formed in 2012, has 13 members who worship at different churches. They are currently doing church tours to raise awareness about the album and also recruit potential individuals to be part of the group.

Binang shared that the group participated in the Presidential Competitions last year and clinched position one but were later disqualified. “We were disqualified because of a copyright infringement. There were certain lyrics that the team used that one singer in South Africa sang and the expectation was that they should have taken the concent from them whether to use the lyrics or not but the team was not aware if the song existed,” he said.

Despite this setback, the group persisted with what they know best. Binang said that the grant they received from the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Culture Development through the department of Arts and Culture, would help them take their music to more people. “They funded us to the tune of P20 000 that we used for recording and the duplications of the CD,” he said.

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Making outstanding art through waste material

Keletso Thobega

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Following one’s vocational calling can be a tall order in a world that still believes that white-collar work is the only way to make a living. No one knows this better than 28-year-old Khumoyame

Addam Ndove, who is a police officer by profession and an artist by vocation. While he is committed to his work as a law enforcer he dedicates most of his free time to making art. Ndove runs a company called Craft-eyed Designs which specialises in upholstery designing, artistic furniture and décor ornaments, mostly made out of waste materials such as empty oil drums, tyres and pallets, among others. The Francistown born and raised lad tells Vibe that his artistic journey started with a passion he had for art and using recycled material to create distinct new pieces.

One day he got an idea to try out a few art works and he went out to collect raw material and got down to work. “I knew I was talented in hand craft but had never explored my potential. I was impressed with what I managed to do. My work was interesting and outstanding. I also received positive feedback from the public and realised that this was something I could do out of passion and to complement my earnings,” he says.

Ndove explains that Art is a way of expressing himself. “I enjoy art because that is how I communicate and share what is in my mind.” He points out that he is also a businessman so selling his craft was not too difficult as he has the acumen. He however notes that the biggest challenge he faces is that a large number of Batswana do not appreciate art and therefore do not recognise the value of his work. Other challenges he faces include lack of operational space and shortage of capital.

He says that shortage of raw materials limits him from unleashing his full creative potential. Ndove currently runs his company alone and juggles it with his day job. He hopes to one day get an investor to bolster his business so that he can employ other people and grow the enterprise. “I would like to get a spacious workshop and showroom, and also hire relevant employees.” But doing what he loves makes him content. “Bringing an idea to life makes me fulfilled. I always feel great when I see my finished products.”

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BOMU awards go on…

Keletso Thobega

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The 10th annual Botswana Musicians Union (BOMU) awards will be held on 26 January 2019 at GICC. Revellers should expect performances from Lister Boleseng, Nono Siile, Perion, Slizer, Matheke Letane and Kwaito Nation among others. Tickets are said to be already on sale through Webtickets.

The awards will also be broadcasts.
Over the past few weeks there has been confusion over whether the awards will go and this week Phemelo ‘Fresh Les’ Lesokwane officially confirmed that it is all systems go. Artists caused a stir this week on social media when they indicated that was confusion and miscommunication around the awards. But Lesokwane insists that there is nothing confusing going on as the interim committee had been planning the awards for a while now, and had even roped in sponsors.

He said that the awards had been organised since last week but they had to change the date due to a few glitches. Lesokwane says that they had opted for the people’s choice approach to awards. “We have given the public the power to decide who they want to vote for under the different categories. What happens is that when you vote you sms the category and name of the artist to 16565. We are then going to tally the votes when voting lines close on 23 January 2019.

We will then cut down the number of entries based on the number of votes. This will make the process easier for our judges, who will listen to the artists’ CDs and give them points.” He further said that having a high number of votes would not automatically mean that an artist makes it. “One might have many votes but with low quality music and we consider that. We are looking at quality
Lesokwane said that when former chairperson Pagson Ntsie was outsed, the awards were still open. “Registration is still on at BOMU office in Kgolagano at Main mall. Those who had registered can check their documentation.”

Last year BOMU was wrecked by infightings following a ruling that Pagson Ntsie is not the legitimate chairperson of the music body. The ruling was passed in August by the Registrar of Societies. The ruling came following investigations regarding adherence to the BOMU Constitution and corruption claims. Accusations of financial mismanagement and poor leadership also cropped up.

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