Music Artists to Watch: Tinashé

I’ve recently had a new and upcoming artist highlighted to me, and so I thought that I’d present an introduction to his music to my blog readers, and see what ya’ll think…

His name is Tinashé, and apparently he’s on the cusp of making it big (he has an EP out on 1st March).

I have to say, I’ve had a listen to his stuff, and it is very different and very pleasant on the ear.

Have a listen to some of the tracks below, and feel free to start a discussion on the ‘comments’ section – be interested to see what everyone else thinks of this chap!

Saved (my favourite)

Mayday (acoustic)

Mr Presumption

For anyone interested in a bit of Tinaché’s backstory:

From Zimbabwe via Hackney – Tinashe.

We’ve resurrected Island Records legendary imprint Mango Records for him – the 80s imprint that specialised in African, Latin American and Caribbean music (it was the label that invented ‘world music’ in the UK and put out for example King Sunny Ade’s 1982 UK debut Juju Music or 1991’s seminal Big Cumbia compilation)

“I’ll always be an outsider,” says Tinashé. “I see the world differently because of where I’ve come from, but i see that as an advantage.

“A life of displacement,” is how the 25-year-old Zimbabwean modestly describes the zig-zagging journey that took him from his birthplace in the township of Harare, Zimbabwe, to Hackney via Essex and Camberwell to ultimately, a debut album that’s the perfect summary of his life thus far, not to mention his never-say-die outlook.

“I’m not harping on, it’s just the way that it was,” he says, describing the first decade of his life spent living in a solitary room with 9 relatives in Harare. His mother, fraught from the dangers of Zimbabwe’s increasingly volatile political landscape, fled to Camberwell, London in a bid to create a new life for her family.

Living in Highfield, the township where Robert Mugabe was born, is one thing, growing up there without your mother or father in a ‘house’ stacked with 9 other relatives with no electricity, reading by candlelight, was 5,042 miles from being ideal.

Tinashe writes supremely addictive pop songs, bearing a lightness of touch that produces music at once euphoric and life-affirming, music that’s equally evocative of a life shared between two vastly different continents and cultures.

Tinashé has been sharpening his live craft and stoking the fire with a handful of low-key acoustic performances at Lock Tavern (Young and Lost Club), Cobden Club, The Enterprise and Dingwalls. These are the first stops of what is set to be a magical journey.

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About Gari

Northern lad; living out in the Peak District and rediscovering life after having had a brain tumour.

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