Chile One’s album evokes mixed emotions

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ZAMBIAN music sensation Obed Bwalya Chileshe, popularly known as Chile One Mr Zambia, slid into 2024 with a 22-track album, ‘Boy from Chililand,’ drawing diverse reactions among Zambian music enthusiasts.

In its initial 24 hours, the album garnered an impressive 2 million Boomplay demonstrating its immediate impact.

Hailing from Chililabombwe, Chile One’s creation is different from the typical ‘kopala’ style, of speaker bursting songs offering a tranquil and melodic experience suitable for leisurely drives, wine evenings, or a serene weekend, catering especially to mature audiences.

The album delves into a spectrum of social issues such as love, relationships, struggles, poverty, success, God, gratitude, and dedication.

The standout track, ‘Nayo Nayo,’ featuring Tiana, unfolds a poignant narrative of a young couple navigating the challenges and triumphs of love.

Despite the noteworthy numbers, the album has faced criticism, with social media figure Sean Tembo rating its initial six songs a 3/10.

In contrast, dedicated fans express their astonishment, finding it challenging to even pinpoint a favorite track.

Social media platforms, notably TikTok, have embraced the storm coming with the album, as users are creating content featuring its soundtracks.

Chile One rose to prominence in 2021 with the hit song ‘Fwebakuchaume,’ which garnered multiple awards in the 2022 Kwacha Music Awards (5) and the 2022 Diamond Personality Awards(2).

Since then, the artist has consistently delivered quality music, maintaining a strong presence in the industry.

The track ‘Headlines,’ featuring Vinchezo, has gained attention for its revealing narrative about Chile One’s journey in the music industry, showcasing his versatility as both a singer and rapper.

Despite a quiet 2023, Chile One surprised fans with the release of ‘Boy from Chililand,’ a masterpiece announced in December 2023 through his Facebook page.

The album’s traditional roots and alignment with Zambian rhythm make it a family-friendly and positive creation, earning it a deserving 9/10 rating from this writer.

Moving away from the contemporary trends, of sexism, vulgarity, insulting innuendos, ‘Boy from Chililand’ harks back to a time when Zambian music served the dual purpose of educating and entertaining.

Chile One’s work carries the spirit of past legends like PK Chishala, reaffirming the timeless essence of Zambian music.

By Buumba Mwitumwa

Kalemba, January 3, 2024

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