They came, attended the summit, admired the country’s natural beauty, felt the warmth of the Africa, but in the end of it all, they were all conquered by the beautiful sounds of the south-east African endowed nation.
In this momentus period, beautiful memories were created. History has been made. And posterity has cemented its destiny.
A legend has been endorsed. Rightly, so.
The SADC Presidents and their respective delegations who came to Malawi for the summit will have two things etched two things on their minds – the trademark friendliness of of the Malawian people and Lulu’s stroke of music genius.
The delighted expressions on the Presidents’ faces when Malawi’s contemporary afro-jazz and R’n’B guitar wizard, Lulu, real name Lawrence Khwisa, hit the insane money notes as he aptly strutted the guitar dictated with coordinated discipline and a professional touch says it all.
That night, he was in a league of Hugh Masekera, Jimmy Dhudhu, Sankamota, Eric Paliani, Ishmael Latif, Jonathan Butler, Dave Koz and Earl Klugh among others.
Malawi’s Lazarus Chakwera, South Africa’s Cyril Ramaphosa, Mozambique’s, Felipe Jacninto Nyusi, Zimbabwe’s Emerson Mnangagwa, Andry Nirina Rajoelina of Madagasca, Felix Tshisekedi, of the DR Congo and Samia Suluhu Hassan of Tanzania and all and sundry appeared satisfied as Lulu cemented his place as Malawi’s most talented music royalty.
For a presidential dinner banquet, Lulu proved to be the ideal act for the occasion as he went all out with contemporary jazz and made the guitar do the talking to the audience.
His choice of music was interesting and he dished out his sumptuous hits with a fuse of jazz, afro-pop imbued touch class making everyone in attendance appreciate the gift of music that Malawi has to offer.
When Lulu picked up one of Malawi’s greatest song of all times, Chitukutuku, the Mwachenjera Darling creator permeated with utter confidence and in turn received great admiration from the visitors and the host president, Lazarus Chakwera and all citizens in the State House banquet Hall and outside it, watching on TV from home, oozed from home as his works of art invariably imbued with a sense of calmness, relaxation and ultimate serenity.
In an interview, the multi-instrumentalist, Lulu said: “I feel so honoured and very humbled to have been considered for that great service to my country, SADC and the entire African continent and the world.
“This can only be God and I will forever be grateful for giving me this talent and I know I am not the best but what I know is that I am blessed beyond measure. And, I would like to thank the government and the people of Malawi for trusting me to represent the country through music.”
If there was a doubt, or an iota of disbelief as to who is the best music live act in Malawi who could rise to the highest occasion if an international stage avails itself, that night, Lulu became the answer.
During that night, Lulu proved his worth as Malawi’s most consistent musician alongside his mentor and music godfather, Lucius Banda, for over two decades at the top level.
Social media has been awash with praises for the Balaka born self-taught music icon after his State House gallant performance.
Blantyre based Blessings Kanike said: “Lulu is like Lionel Messi, a natural talent. He does not need to do anything to be great because he was born great. That live performance was epic and an act of pride for all Malawians.
“Watching him play his guitar effortlessly before the presidents was one great highlight of the SADC summit for it is a special moment everyone including the leaders will forever cherish in all the days of their lives,” said Kanike.
Lulu is an undeniable icon and seeing him perform at a high-level audience comprising at least eight Presidents in one place completely transformed what many expected from a live performance, and now, the Tsogolo ndiliona hit maker has set a standard that no musician of this generation will ever reach.
An entry to Lulu’s SADC presidential dinner show or watching it on TV or social media didn’t grant the audience an admission to a mere concert, it was an admission to a great lifetime experience.
Journalist Dorothy Kachitsa said:” Lulu is pure class. He gave out the best performance out there and made us all proud.”
Lulu’s ground breaking presidential performance has changed the way people listen and receive music – Lulu is one musician who makes you listen to him with intent because when he plays the guitar and sing he truly bares his soul as he he begs you to accept him at his most vulnerable for get lost to heaven.
During the performance, with a very simple set, Lulu dressed simple but beautiful as he dotted a light-blue two-buttoned blazer emblazoned with a SADC logo, a black toxido panelled pair of trousers and a navy-blue plain T-shirt, a celebratory nod to his contemporary African heritage diced in modernity and a symbol of his power and success as a Malawian artist.
It is this Lulu SADC performance that has changed the game for live performances. It was simply a cultural reset as Lulu has made history by not only being the first Malawian musician to play for 8 presidents and high profile dignitaries in one night in which he also put on the best live performance our generation will ever know.
The performance was nothing short of a spectacle, musically charged and filled with power and emotion as Lulu paid paid tribute to African culture and Africanism through native traditional African beats that were a pleasure to the ear and pleasing to the heart.
Lulu leads a revolution of young African domination and paves the way for the other artists that follow as he is a force to be reckoned with and a force the world is in dire need of – a powerful, successful performer, guitarist, singer, songwriter, composer and producer, a young man who provides a platform for everyone.
Hate him or love him, Lulu is a force to be reckoned with and he certainly proved it in his live performance before eight Presidents and heads of state – and that performance has just pushed him to a horizon above and to the galaxies where other musicians will never reach in a lifetime.
Social media influencer and former journalist Davis Saddo but popularly known as Che Haji Folopensi said: “Lulu is a great talented musician and a complete artist. His SADC performance has just confirmed how big and talented an artist that he is.
At one time when asked to name Malawi’s best musician, the legendary music icon, Lucius Banda retorted: Lulu is by far the best musician in Malawi. He is ahead of our time.
“His music talent is way ahead of many of us, many people will appreciate his talent when we reach there.”
Lulu’s musical destiny, it appears, is cast in stone.
What a legend.
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