Rewind , Pause , Play with Metaphysics

For those who don’t know you, how best can you introduce yourself? 

Name’s Metaphysics. I am a good guy, a rapper, producer, film maker. I am just an all round artist, entrepreneur, theologian. I love the study of the mystical arts. I draw to the principles of just trying to expand knowledge and get wiser with time. 

Being born to a white father and black mother, how was it being caught in-between two cultures? 

Being brought up in two different cultures was very apparent especially in Zimbabwe in the pre independence and post-independence. I had to grow up in the coloured community that is Acadia. There was a lot if segregation then. After kindergarten I moved to the hood, Kambuzuma. My parents couldn’t live together due to their differences. But after independence everything fell into place because of the newly found integration.

Who introduced you to music? 

I would say through the community. My mom was into discos and clubs back then and we would have the nicest records and music around. My dad played an instrument so there was always music in the house. I found hip hop on my own. I sort of gravitated towards it at a very young age. 

You went on the radio as a young man, was Radio 1 the Urban radio at that time? 

Yes, I had a radio show called Young Zimbabwe on Radio 1 which was not a cool station at the time. It was an informative station. It was not urban but my show would promote anything new and hop to a young Zimbabwean audience. 

You formed the first hip-hop group and then the star-studded Peace of Ebony. How did you handpick these guys? 

I formed a group called Peace of Ebony and it was all by luck. We got to meet each other at Cosa College and then we met Chiwoniso Maraire at Chicken Inn in the city. So we decided to put together Peace of Ebony. We were lucky to work with Keith Verkason who at the time was working with Ilanga, Cde Chinx. He was very established and a great producer who brought us up to speed. So o would say it was pretty much luck.

There was an attempt to sign you to the American labels. What went wrong? 

We were actually going to be signed to Island Records at the time. So it was just poor management and poor decisions. We were too young to understand what was going on. So I would SA youthfulness and not having proper representation. Anyway we went to find other ways and other labels. 

Going solo, the dynamics of production and distribution how did you manage that? 

I managed out of necessity. Coming from Zimbabwe, you pretty have to do everything on your own. Those mechanisms don’t exist so we had to create them. We had to learn to produce and distribute our own music and we had to learn to manage all that on our own. 

The 90s walk us through the urban scene? 

In the 90’s the urban scene in Zimbabwe was very vibrant because we had people coming from all over the world returning back home. There was a really great sensation of finally being open to the world. It was really nice and vibrant. 

What was there then, that is lacking now in the Urban culture? 

Opportunity is lacking. Zim still had great infrastructure, great mechanisms that you could explore. But right now, the opportunity for the kids in terms of capital, support, labels and infrastructure doesn’t exist anymore. But I think the ghetto youths are finding their way especially with Zimdancehall and the technology. So I think it evens out and balances out

What have you seen in Germany in terms of artistic development which we can benefit here? 

In Germany, there is just opportunity in terms of network. There is actual functioning record labels, there is a whole industry, studios and equipment is made here. Germany supports the artists. There are movements that are beneficial to the artists, collection societies that actually work and the radio stations are on a mass. So fro an artist there are a lot of things that are beneficial that in Zimbabwe I think we just lack because the infrastructure’s just isn’t there.

Working with Buju Bunton and Beanie, how did that come into being? 

Buju Bunton came to my house to record a dubplate because right next to where I live there is one of the best Reggae and Dancehall club in Germany and they usually host most of the top artists. I have interviewed the likes of Buju, Capleton and basically everyone who has been at that spot. So when Buju came to my place to record, I managed to get a feature from him, same with Mr Vegas and other reggae artists and hip hop artists that have come through.

Has the term Zim Hip Hop pegged us back? 

I don’t think the term Zim hip hop has pegged us up because here we have German hip hop or Spanish hip hop or French hip hop. So I don’t think that makes a difference. I just think that the Zim hip hop community is just too small to make any significant impact. I would rather you say African hip hop because that broadens the spectrum at the point. 

Gandanga Music, how can you impact our local industry? 

I am still trying to figure that out. I built a studio back home but since I am not on site as much as I would love to be, it’s difficult to get projects up and running. But definitely Gandanga is there for the people. It’s there to make things happen but I am just waiting for the right time. 

Policies that can benefit the arts industry which one do you suggest? 

I think right now in Zimbabwe it would be really good to open up for promoters to bring in international artists. It’s good for international relations. I thin Kirsty Coventry has not done much for the arts since she was appointed minister of sports, recreation and arts. I think we have very tough laws for the artists in terms of trying to promote Zimbabwe. I think a lot of policies need to be revisited  and readapted to our current state of affairs.

Advice to the upcoming acts?

My advice is keep at it. Believe in yourself. Use the technology available. Font let anybody tell you it can’t be done. It’s up to you, the energy and commitment that you ate willing to put behind this thing is what in turn with reward you. So don’t give up on things that don’t seem to be going your way immediately. Some things are just a process of time. Work on your craft always.

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