Many Rwandans who loved the 80 and 90’s folks reminisce well the lyrics like Inzoovu, Bene imana, Mbahoze nte, abatangana and others.

She is one of the composers of those tracks of the earliest days embroiled with the traditional element that was pure, ancient and melodic.

Her exceptional unique vocal blended with powerful lyrics lay a strong message of love and humanity. Florida was very active in the years of 70’s-1990’s. However, her tracks are still alive despite the modern trends.

Uweera’s musical inspiration grew some time back since 1960’s while in Burundi at the only 14 years of age.

At only 14 years that is when she started her musical career and by early 1963 Uweera had recorded her first songs like inzoovu, Iwaacu, Igitaramo, Bene ‘imana which she recorded in France to lack of recording houses locally at the time.

Also, the membership in the traditional troupes including Indashyikirwa, Amariza, Amagaju, Amasonga sharpened improved her since there were many vocalists in those troupe group

She recalls in 1959 when the reigning king in Rwanda urged the Rwandan refugees in Burundi in an official message to consider and conserve the integrity of original culture through the traditional folks.

“The king’s message increased the love of the traditional songs among the Rwandans living in Burundi,” she said.

Joining the traditional troupes for instance ‘Indashyikirwa and ‘Abaterambabazi’ ‘Umugabekazi ’ impacted her musical journey.

Shortly, after recording her first song ‘Abaterambabazi’ she started travelling from here and there as well building a reputation on a global scale.

In her memory lane, she remembers attending one of the prominent event, a cultural show in France and Belgium during the 1980’s on the invitation of other Rwandan folk singers like Muyango and Cecille Kayirebwa who were living in those countries.

“In this cultural conference I met other traditional singers coming all over the continents like Cameroon, Ethiopia, South Africa and many more others which boosted my connection,” she said.

‘While in Belgium I exploited the chance and recorded my first album called ‘Urumuri’ composed of songs; Urihehe se Mana Yangye, Ndaje shenge , Umwiza wangye,Rumanzi,Wirila, Bene Imana,Urukundo,Nimundeke Ngende,Urukundo, Izohambere.

“I can say that my career at the time sustained my financial needs especially from those international concerts where I managed to get some of my money which catered some of my household needs,” she added.

Advice to the young traditional singers

Uweera advises young Rwandans who want to pursue traditional songs either as soul singers or in troupes to shun away with copying and pirating, rather they should have to focus on their originalities and vocals.

The Express News

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