Oliver "Tuku" Mtukudzi
Mtukudzi began performing in 1977 when he joined the Wagon Wheels, a band that also featured Thomas Mapfumo. Their single Dzandimomotera went gold and Tuku's first album followed, which was also a major success. Mtukudzi is also a contributor to Mahube, Southern Africa's "supergroup".
With his husky voice, he has become the most recognised voice to emerge from Zimbabwe and onto the international scene and he has earned a devoted following across Africa and beyond. A member of Zimbabwe's KoreKore group, with Nzou Samanyanga as his totem, he sings in the nation's dominant Shona language along with Ndebele and English. He also incorporates elements of different musical traditions, giving his music a distinctive style, known to fans as Tuku Music. Mtukudzi has had a number of tours around the world. He has been on several tours in the UK, US and Canada to perform for large audiences.
He is the father of five children and has two grandchildren. Two of his children are also musicians. His son Sam Mtukudzi, a successful musician in his own right, died in a car accident in March 2010. Mtukudzi also has four sisters and one brother, who died.
HIV/AIDS rumours and HIV Awareness Campaign
In Zimbabwe there has been speculation that the artist is infected by HIV/AIDS, possibly due to the deaths of four band members from the disease and his involvement HIV awareness campaigns. His brother Robert died of HIV/AIDS in the 1980s, when information on the disease was still scarce. Mtukudzi says that he is the one of the earliest artists in Zimbabwe to be informed about HIV by WHO. However, Tuku has disclosed his HIV status during several interviews, dismissing the rumours as untrue. He remains an activist in HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns, and hopes to eliminate the stigma around the disease and infected individuals.
- 1978 Ndipeiwo Zano (re-released 2000)
- 1979 Chokwadi Chichabuda
- 1979 Muroi Ndiani?'
- 1980 Africa (re-released 2000)
- 1981 Shanje
- 1981 Pfambi
- 1982 Maungira
- 1982 Please Ndapota
- 1983 Nzara
- 1983 Oliver's Greatest Hits
- 1984 Hwema Handirase
- 1985 Mhaka
- 1986 Gona
- 1986 Zvauya Sei?
- 1987 Wawona
- 1988 Nyanga Yenzou
- 1988 Strange, Isn't It?
- 1988 Sugar Pie
- 1989 Grandpa Story
- 1990 Chikonzi
- 1990 Pss Pss Hallo!
- 1990 Shoko
- 1991 Mutorwa
- 1992 Rombe
- 1992 Rumbidzai Jehova
- 1992 Neria Soundtrack'
- 1993 Son of Africa
- 1994 Ziwere MuKobenhavn
- 1995 Was My Child
- 1996 Svovi yangu
- 1995 The Other Side: Live in Switzerland
- 1995 Ivai Navo
- 1997 Ndega Zvangu (re-released 2001)
- 1997 Chinhamwe
- 1998 Dzangu Dziye
- 1999 Tuku Music
- 2000 Paivepo
- 2001 Neria
- 2001 Bvuma (Tolerance)
- 2002 Shanda soundtrack
- 2002 Vhunze Moto
- 2003 Shanda (Alula Records)
- 2003 Tsivo (Revenge)
- 2004 Greatest Hits Tuku Years
- 2004 Mtukudzi Collection 1991–1997
- 2004 Mtukudzi Collection 1984–1991
- 2005 Nhava(Tolerance)
- 2006 Wonai
- 2007 Tsimba Itsoka
- 2008 Dairai (Believe)
- 2010 Rudaviro
- 2010 Kutsi Kwemoyo (compilation)
- 2011 Rudaviro
- 2011 "Abi'angu" (Duets of my time)
- 2012 "Sarawoga" Sarawoga laments the losses that the legend has had to endure in his life, not least the loss of life. Thus he has been left 'alone' in a sense, hence the title Sarawoga (left alone).
- Contributing artist
- 1996 The Rough Guide to the Music of Zimbabwe (World Music Network)
- 1999 Unwired: Acoustic Music from Around the World (World Music Network)
- 2000 Unwired: Africa (World Music Network)
- Jit (dir. Michael Raeburn, 1990)
- Neria (dir. Goodwin Mawuru, written by Tsitsi Dangarembga, 1993). Mtukudzi starred in the movie and made the soundtrack.
- Shanda (dir. John and Louise Riber, 2002, rev. 2004)
- Sarawoga, 2009, was written by Elias C. Machemedze, directed by Watson Chidzomba and produced by Oliver Mtukudzi, who also did the soundtrack for the film.
- 2012 Nzou NeMhuru Mudanga DVD, the live recording of a show, a theatrical performance which Tuku had with his son just weeks before his death.
- 1985–1988: One of The Best Selling Artists in Zimbabwe
- KORA Award for Best Arrangement in 2002, for Ndakuwara
- 2002: SAMA Finalist (Best Traditional/African Adult Contemporary DVD) Live at the Cape Town Jazz Festival
- National Arts Merit Awards (NAMA) in 2002 and 2004 for Best Group / Male vocalist
- KORA Award for Best African male artist and Lifetime Achievement Award in August 2003
- Reel Award Winner for Best African Language in 2003
- An honorary degree from the University of Zimbabwe in December 2003
- NAMA Award 2003: Best Group/Artist
- NAMA Award 2004: Best Group/Artist
- NAMA Award 2005: National Arts Personality of the Year
- NAMA Award 2006: Outstanding Album (NHAVA)
- 2006: ZIMA (Best Music Ringing Tone Handiro Dambudziko)
- 2006: ZIMA (Music Ambassador)
- NAMA Award 2007: Best Musician/Group
- 2007:Cultural Ambassador – Zimbabwe Tourism Association
- NAMA Award 2008: (Outstanding Musician)
- Honorary MSc (Fine Arts) Degree awarded by the Women's University in Africa in 2009.
- M-Net Best Soundtrack Award in 1992, for Neria
- 2010: MTN SAMA Awards recognised his son's achievements in music
- 2010: University of Zimbabwe (UZ) and The International Council of Africana Womanism (ICAW) Award: recognition of his luminary role in uplifting African women through his artistic work – music and a diversity of art forms – offered as community development at his arts academy at Pakare Paye in Norton.
- 2011: Titled Zimbabwe's first UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador for Eastern and Southern Africa
- 2011: Honoured by the Government of Italy with the prestigious Cavaliere of the Order of Merit Award in recognition of his work as an international musician. (The award is what the Knighthood is to England)
- Oliver Mtukudzi and the Black Spirits, Zimbabwe Music Guide.
- "Sam Mtukudzi dies in car crash". Newzimbabwe.com. 15 March 2010. Retrieved 30 June 2012.
- "Oliver Mtukudzi's son dies in car crash". Times LIVE. 15 March 2010. Retrieved 30 June 2012.
- "Superstar Tuku discloses HIV status". The Herald. 1 August 2012. Retrieved 17 May 2014.
- "Tuku debuts double album on UK tour". New ZImbabwe. 13 July 2010. Retrieved 2 August 2010.
- Review of Shanda movie at Dandamutande
- Mtukudzi, o expected for UK concerts, New Zimbabwe.com, 11 October 2006 
- Oliver Mtukudzi:Biography, Sheer Sound