Growing up he listened to a chunk of music he parents had different tastes playing Simion Chimbetu, Steve Makoni, Zig Zag Band, etc on the vinyl his love for music was birthed with a solid foundation from the golden age of Zimbabwean music dynasty. Fresh from releasing his album Crass Roots we took some to get to know and understand the raising hip hop artist Dimitri.
MM : Given a chance to introduce your self to Zimbabwe , how best can you do it:
Dimitri & The Scarecrow is a musical concept incorporating rap, poetry, singing and music production as a means to negotiate the human terrain. Developed in 2008 by Dimitri D. Kwenda from a song titled Scarecrow, the idea first emerged in 2012 on the Book Cafe’s open mic night. It was furthered by a merging with the Rock band Acid Tears. The title is a juxtaposition of Artist (Dimitri) and surrounding factors which affect everyday people (the proverbial Scarecrow)
MM: If you can to share with your name and chronological background :
you mean where I am from? Dimitri D. Kwenda, from an area called Njanja, after crossing the Save River, past Hwedza. (Near Chivhu)
Muyera Moyo, vana Sinyoro. Yes Mizchif (RIP) is my cousin.
MM: How did you choose to do music?
After a frustrating stint trying to plug into society, I had a friend advise me to get involved in what I truly was passionate about. The Universe would conspire to make things work out as long as I worked towards my goals diligently and sincerely.
MM : What makes you a different artist:
The way I approach my subject matter. The lyrical content has always been flagged as a strong suit and my unique take on production. My voice in it’s variations along with musical concepts.
MM :Which genre suits you best:
MM:What’s the difference between your first and last song:
The sonic range in terms of instrumentation, arrangement and content.
MM :How have you grown:
MM: Living in a foreign land, what’s the advantages and disadvantages:
▪an expansion in audience
▪exposure to alternative culture
▪organic growth unhindered as strongly by finances as the Zimbabwean economy
▪experiences where freedom of speech can be practiced with lesser fear
▪more room for experiment because I encounter different styles of art
▪a massive disconnect from the Zimbabwean reality
▪an inability to cultivate a solid Zimbabwean following due to travel constraints
MM: Local musical influences:
Simon Chimbetu: his ability to write on a poetic extreme is cognizant of how expressively rich Zimbabwean languages can be when weilded by a gifted poet.
Thomas Mapfumo: a very independent and strong character with unwavering focus. He embodies the spirit of revolution through self believe and conviction.
Mizchif: Being from the same family yet not having ridden in each other’s musical waves helped nurture individuality. Hechichamunorwa Kwenda had a very relaxed manner of conveying his presence through a microphone. He made plenty of artists believe in the possibility of a Zimbabwean artist in a Hip-Hop age, could break through.
The Book Café: though not an artist, this platform nurtured and facilitated my own direction as an artist. Thomas Brickhill, Hector Mugani are always a special mention.
Biko MC: The forgotten lyrical genius. Biko always made it alright to be completely left field of everyone else. He has an unmatched pen game and the mind of an original.