Busi Ncube

Bulawayo, Zimbabwe
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Busi Ncube
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Bulawayo
Zimbabwe

Born on 15 June 1963, Busi Ncube is one of the founding members of an Afro-fusion band called Ilanga. Bulawayo, Zimbabwe is her hometown. She hails from a family who background cis characterized with music. In early 1960s, her father Sunday Ncube used to play the bass guitar. He was also a vocalist for a local jazz band. Her passion for music began when she was six. She and her other seven sisters were part of a church choir. They also participated in traditional dancing groups and other ceremonies.

This prompted her to learn how to play percussion and drums. She and her twin sister Sipathisiwe joined a music group called Ebony Sheik. In 1987, she went to visit her elder sister Doreen who lived in Harare. While in Harare, she joined Ilanga band. The group comprised of Don Gumbo, the late Andy Brown, Virgillio Ignacia, Gibson Nyoni, Charles Mangena and Keith Farquharson.

The group recorded their debut single ‘Thandiwe’. This was followed by ‘Song of Africa’ and ‘Botha’. In 1987, they recorded an album ‘Visions Foretold’. To date, Ilanga recorded three albums. The group disbanded and she has recorded thirteen albums with a backing band called Rain. In 2006, the band toured Norway and made an appearance at the Mela Festival. She has also done projects with other musicians. In 2006, she collaborated on an album ‘Hupenyu Kumusha/Life at Home’ (2006). The album featured several notable Zimbabwean musicians such as Chiwoniso Maraire, Roger Mbambo, Adam Chisvo and Mashasha.

She has toured the Czech Republic, Belgium, Slovakia, Germany, Norway and Sweden where she did a live CD recording. She has also shared the stage with international musicians namely Tracy Chapman, Bruce Springsteen, Miriam Makeba, Hugh Masekela, Youssou N’dou and Sting. She currently divides her time between Harare and Oslo, where she teaches and performs. She studied music at the Harare College of Music and has groomed Dudu Manhenga and many other musicians.

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