Book launch: ‘Making Music in Malawi’ by Dr John Lwanda

UK time 14:00 – 15:00 Malawi time 15:00 – 16:00
Location Edinburgh City Chambers / Zoom

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Insights into a lifetime of passion for music and scholarly research were shared on Monday 4th April when Dr John Chipembere Lwanda launched his latest book “Making Music in Malawi”.

Speaking from Zomba, Rev Prof Ken Ross who chaired the event (held both online and with participants gathered in-person in Edinburgh City Chambers), introduced Dr Lwanda as a “polymath”. Reviewer Ken Lipenga referred to Dr Lwanda’s book as: “…the closest that we have to an encyclopaedia of Malawian music” and Dr Lwanda as “possibly the top scholar of Malawian music”. Publisher, Muti Phoya praised John Lwanda’s “commitment to giving Malawian communities a voice…adding nuance…and one of the most driven scholars on Malawi”.

A medical doctor, writer, poet, researcher, social historian and music producer, John Lwanda spoke of and illustrated with musical extracts his deep relationship with and knowledge of music and friendship with leading musicians over the years. Musician, Davie Luhanga closed proceedings with an excellent live performance. A few copies of “Making Music in Malawi” are available from Pamtondo, 41 The Fairways, Bothwell, G71 8PB (lwanda2000@yahoo.co.uk) at the discounted launch price of £25.

Read John Lwanda’s article in The Scotsman newspaper about the new book.

The publisher, Muti Phoya, says: ‘Making Music in Malawi is a ground breaking contribution to the historical and sociocultural significance of sounds that make and remake Malawi. A culmination of many years of research, Lwanda covers a staggering range of indigenous and hybrid musical genres, from sikiri to hip hop. Lwanda’s analysis stretches between rural and urban Malawi and extends to the diaspora. He reaches into the precolonial past and projects into the future of music in Malawi. Lwanda roots his analysis in his academic training as a historian, but this text also demonstrates his personal commitment to producing and supporting Malawian music. This book serves as an archive and mixtape of the sounds of Malawi, from the precolonial period to the postcolonial moment’.