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Charles Zawose

As the longtime accompanist and right-hand guy of his uncle, Dr. Hukwe Zawose, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Charles Zawose was a pivotal element of the family members whose music practically defined the wealthy creative customs of their indigenous Tanzania. Charles Zawose was created in Wakili, Tanzania on July 3, 1970 — while his personal family members toiled on the plantation, his uncle Hukwe gained worldwide renown alongside Dickson Mkwama and Lubeleje Chiute in the Grasp Music artists of Tanzania. Following the fatalities of Mkwama and Chiute, Hukwe handpicked Charles as his fresh collaborator and protégé — learning the ilimba (thumb piano) as well as the izeze (traditional fiddle) furthermore to adding vocal harmonies, Charles demonstrated the perfect counterpoint for his uncle’s larger-than-life on-stage theatrics and otherworldly five-octave tone of voice. Together these were staples at globe music celebrations, and in 2002 opened up for Peter Gabriel on his Developing Up globe tour — Hukwe and Charles also documented for Gabriel’s REAL LIFE label, with 2002’s Mkuki Wa Rocho heralding Charles’ debut like a songwriter on “Tumieni Ujuzi.” He also led his personal 14-piece group African Open fire. Pursuing Hukwe’s 2003 loss of life, Charles began focus on his debut single LP — the task remained uncompleted during his unexpected, AIDS-related loss of life on Oct 24, 2004.

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