By Marcfarlane Mbewe
Veteran musician, Billy Kaunda, has over the years demonstrated to young people in the industry that he is a dreamer as he is clear on what he wants to achieve. This is according to Wonderful Mkhutche, author of the award-winning singer’s autobiography due early next month.
Titled ‘Hills and Valleys’, the life story comes months after Billy turned back to his Christian roots in ‘Hymns’ which happens to be the parliamentarian’s 13th studio album in an illustrious career dating back to the late 90s.
Without wanting to be preemptive, Wonderful has exclusively told zambuye.com that the title ‘Hills and Valleys’ was derived from the fact that the book is “telling the life story of Billy Kaunda from the perspective that it has been an up and down journey.”
He added, “This is in his life as a person, a musician and politician, as well.”
On the journey to November’s release of the autobiography, Wonderful said spending time with the former cabinet minister was, in his words, “wonderful”.
“I came to know him that he is open, humble and an intelligent individual. He is good at telling stories and likes laughing a lot. We were also working with his two brothers, Obingtone and Dexter. These two have been a great part of the journey,” explained the young theologian, social analyst and philosopher.
Wonderful, who also authored Lucius Banda’s life history, has further stated that he has drawn comparisons from the two towering musicians in the sense that both stars are great having dominated the golden times of Malawi music. This is aside the fact that they faced extreme challenges to achieve their current status.
He, however, was quick to mention that differences exist in their life story as Billy’s is generally about his life while with Lucius it is “more on his music and politics.”
Looking into the future, Wonderful harbours ambitions to write a book that assesses the Tonse Alliance presidency which is headed by the international church minister and former Malawi Assemblies of God longest serving leader, Dr Lazarus Chakwera. It is Wonderful’s strong opinion that Malawi needs a critical analysis on the presidency to “make sure we gauge where we are heading to as a county.”
Asked by zambuye.com why he fancies writing on public figures, Wonderful, who represented Malawi’s Mzuzu University at the 2010 Zain Africa Challenge in Uganda, responded, “Stories of our great men and women have to be told. There are a lot of misconceptions on them as celebrities and individuals.”
Meanwhile, literary fans across Malawi and beyond are looking forward to a wonderful read when Billy Kaunda’s ‘Hills and Valleys’ autobiography comes out on 3 November.