Local artists to be joined by US mega stars for extravaganza
US mega-stars Brian McKnight and Joe Thomas will headline this year’s Stanbic Music Festival in Lusaka on October 5 and 6, 2018.
The two Grammy award-winning nominees will perform alongside local artists AfroPop rising star Kiki, the queen of Zambian R&B Salma Sky, gospel sensation Esther Chungu and the Zambian song bird, Wezi.
Now in its fifth year, the Stanbic Music Festival is one of the country’s biggest music event, and in keeping with the event’s tradition of moving forward and upward, this year’s showpiece is set to be bigger and better than the last.
Stanbic Bank Zambia Head of Public Relations Chanda Katongo said the music festival was a growing social event that not only displayed Zambia’s unique culture to the rest of the world but also gave local musicians a platform to grow their influence beyond the country’s borders.
“We always say that Zambia is our home and having been here for over 60 years, the Zambian spirit and culture are deeply embedded in Stanbic Bank’s sustainability strategy. We have helped drive the growth of many sectors of our economy including mining, energy, infrastructure, agriculture as well as arts, investing millions of dollars in the process.
“Zambians are a happy and friendly people. We love making new friends, we love our music and we certainly love to dance. What better way to celebrate all this and embrace the essence of our cultural diversity than a mega concert with a rich mix of great local and international talents from different genres and cultures.”
Brian McKnight is an American R&B singer-songwriter, producer, and musician; A multi-instrumentalist who plays eight instruments including piano, guitar, bass guitar, percussion, trombone, tuba, flugelhorn and trumpet. He has 16 Grammy Awards nominations for hits including Anytime, Love Is, and Win.
Joe Thomas is an American singer, songwriter and record producer, born in Columbus, Georgia, the son of Evangelist preachers and the man behind the platinum selling song, All That I Am.
“Our goal is to give the public something to look forward to each year in the most Zambian way we know how; which is good music, friendship, dance and an all-round good time. Social and cultural events like the Stanbic Music Festival bring people together and promote the spirit of oneness. They help us focus on what unites us even through our diversity – which is the spirit of Ubuntu,” said Ms Katongo.
The National Arts Council (NAC) and the Zambia Association of Musicans (ZAM) have endorsed the Stanbic Music Festival.
NAC director Adrian Maaka Chipindi said: “We are very grateful and excited for this festival. It’s an opportunity to create jobs for the sector. We also see it as a platform to enjoy and see some of the best artists in Zambia. Government supports this initiative and we hope that many more Zambians will support it.”
ZAM President Tivo Shikapwasha said: “We are very, very excited to be supporting this as ZAM. The Zambia Association of Musicians would like to commend Stanbic Bank for their continued efforts in bridging the gap between the world renown musicians and our extremely talented Zambian musicians.”
The Stanbic Music Festival has so far been headlined by internationally acclaimed artists like Hugh Masekela, Oliver Mtukudzi, Mi Casa, Earl Klugh, Zonke, UB40 and the iconic R&B group Boyz II Men just last year. The foreign acts always share the stage with some of Zambia’s best performers including K’milian, Wezi, Chef 187, Abel Chungu and many more.
Over 10,000 people attended the 2017 Stanbic Music Festival, with some fans travelling from as far as Uganda, Kenya, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe.