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'Broadcast One' - Dandelion Radio's 1st compilation album

For June we have 30 hours of new shows - including an exclusive session

Artist Info

The Four Brothers

The Four Brothers
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Led by singing drummer Marshall Munhumumwe, The Four Brothers came together in 1977 out of the ashes of the Great Sounds, and eventually became one of Zimbabwe's most popular musical acts. Munhumumwe, their chief composer as well as a drummer, began his career with The Great Sounds and Black Jack. He then joined Tineyi Chikupo's Mverechena Band, releasing one single in 1976. Soon after, Marshall left the band, bringing Alec Chipaika, Edward Zulu, and Never Mutare with him to form The Four Brothers. In fact, Marshall was Thomas Mapfumo's uncle - he credits Mapfumo for teaching him how to play guitar and drums, as well as inspiring him to become a musician. Releasing hits such as Zvamanya Tongai Zimbabwe, Pamusoroi Komuredhi, and Makorokoto in 1980, the band found great success and paved the way for many more hits to come.

The success of The Four Brothers came from the fact that they blended the chimurenga styles of Mapfumo and Sithole with rhumba from at home and abroad. Their fast paced, highly danceable music features not only the rapid-fire guitar we have come to expect from Zimbabwean compositions, but excellent harmonies as well. The Four Brothers have released many albums, including two greatest hits compilations. In 1988 they joined the ranks of touring Zimbabweans as they played shows in the UK.

Their popularity continued in Zimbabwe when, in 1997, Munhumumwe suffered a stroke and had to quit playing. The Four Brothers continued to tour without him, including a 1998 UK visit, but haven't been able to achieve their former success. Munhumumwe died in 2001. The band has since been rocked by deaths, as Munhumumwe replacements Albert Ruwizhi and Robium Chauraya have both died.

Things are looking a bit rosier for the Four Brothers. Their lastest album, Zvehama, reached the top ten in Zimbabwe after its release. The combination of extensive touring and high-profile collaborations with artists such as Oliver Mtukudzi, Thomas Mapfumo, and Alick Macheso has brought the band back into the spotlight.

The addition of a new drummer/vocalist, James Nyamandi from the Makombe Brothers, has also injected new life into the Brothers career. A new album is expected for the Christmas season. Original members Alex Chipaika, Frank Sibanda, and Never Mutare will join up with the band upon their return form touring in Japan with Clive Malunga's band. However, upon Nyamandi's departure, allegations of copyright infractions and song stealing against Nyamandi's Makombe Brother's band have been forwarded by Munhumumwe's son.

Besides Thomas Mapfumo and Oliver Mtukudzi, The Four Brothers are possibly Zimbabwe's most internationally successful group. Their first greatest hits album, Makorokoto, is available for order at nearly every major record outlet and is included on many "Best Of..." lists of African albums.

The Four Brothers make appearances on many Zimbabwean compilations including the Zimbabwe Frontline series, where they collaborate with singer Patrick Mkwamba. They also recorded an album with Mkwamba, Tonosangana Ikeko, in 1990. The band has also recorded with Jairos Jiri Band frontman Paul Matavire.

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