Gonora Sounds is a family band that has been busking on the streets of Zimbabwe since 2004. Entertaining thousands of commuters with their street beat dubbed Gonora Sounds by regular revellers. The band is led by blind singer/songwriter Daniel Gonora, a wizard on the guitar with his drumming protege son Isaac on drums. In recent years, the band has extended to include seasoned musicians such as Nelson “Mr Longman” Mutanda on lead guitar and Malizani Mbewe on bass. Daniel and Isaac’s street performances have garnered millions of views online, and a growing international fanbase.
The father and son duo feature in multi award winning documentary ‘You Can’t Hide From The Truth” which tells their story. For more than two decades, Daniel has pieced together a living for himself and his family, a disabled man playing for the world’s most beleaguered currency’s pocket change. He is one of the few remaining members of Zimbabwe supergroup Jairos Jiri Band, a group that tragically fell apart as successive members passed away since their heyday on the early 90s.
Gonora Sounds debut full length album Hard Times Never Kill is produced by Zimbabwean music luminary Bothwell Nyamondera and American Producer David Aglow. The duo incorporated seasoned musicians’ bassist Malizani Mbewe and Lead Guitarist Nelson “Mr Longman” Mutanda, as well as Sehlaphi Mtombeni and Isabel Piyo on backing vocals. It is about survival and beating the odds, straight from the streets of Harare. It showcases Daniel Gonora’s full breadth as a guitarist, vocalist, composer, and songwriter.
More recently, Gonora Sounds have collaborated with American Jazz Legend Pharoah Sanders, as well as several international musicians on the Fernando Arno produced “What Love”. British duo, The Busy Twist have recently remixed the band’s song Rwendo Rweupenyu into the ‘Journey of Life Remix”.
Following their first trip to Europe in 2022, the band are ready for more opportunities beyond their native Zimbabwe, and keen to look at further shows in the UK and Europe in 2024, with 2, 4 and 6 member band options available.
“Between drums, vocals and guitars, it’s (Kusaziva Kufa) a syncopated marvel that shifts to an even higher gear halfway through” – The New York Times
“Gonora Sounds take on the (sungura) style is somewhat more rugged than most. Isaac’s drumming is a downpour of rolls and patters, while his father’s guitar drips cascades of fireflies” – The Wire Magazine
“This is music resounding in joy and hope, born from real life experience” – Backseat Mafia