When singer Maddox Ssemanda Ssematimba’s Namagembe music video hit social network channels last week, fans went into a frenzy. Finally, he had released a music video.
The technicalities and semantics of the video production can be a conversation for another day. One of Uganda’s most-gifted artistes is getting his brand in check and his presence on stage has silenced critics that not all rumour mill is gospel truth.
The dreadlocked star was on stage at Club Amnesia last Friday in an oldies night dubbed ‘Ekikadde’ where he rocked the house. Fans could not have enough of him. His music is mellow and richly packaged in a manner that it leaves a lasting impression, which it has upheld for a couple of years now.
Maddox’s is proof that it is not how many songs an artiste can release to make a mark but rather the quality of music that can stand the test of time. Watching him perform evoked memories of a long list of songs that have lost places on music charts.
He performed songs such as Namagembe, Omuyimbi, Irene to which the crowd sang along. Lovers in the house could not hold back. They embraced and slowly moved to the rhythm as they used the love songs to re-assure one another of their deeply-felt emotions and feelings.
Then he bowed out, smiling from the corners of his lips to devouring revellers and fans. It was about 2am in the night.
Maddox Ssemanda Sematimba started singing in 1999. He had not been on stage in nearly six years when he headlined the 2015 Bayimba International Festival. Sematimba’s music tells about love, unity, social justice, peace and everyday issues in songs such as Irene, Tukolagane, Omwami N’omukyala, Kampala, Come Let’s Rock. In the same songs, the feel-good factor comes out strongly. If you have seen him perform, you will appreciate the psyche he puts in his delivery and presence that naturally pulls an emotional chord with the audience, thanks to his good guitar skills and commanding lyrics.