Declan Mackay: Creating Art & The Power of Community Support
For episode 7, I had the honour of having a conversation with musician Declan Mackay on the Mackayz. A proud Zimbabwean who has managed to carve out a niche for himself through music. To be completely honest, I was fascinated to hear about and share Declan’s journey as it offers a different story to the dominant narrative of white Zimbabwean men always being tied to farming... From our conversation, I learned about :
Supporting yourself through art
The power of a community supporting its artists
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Below is my favourite excerpt from our conversation:
Declan: “The musician community here is really good like that. It's like if you win. I don't know if that applies to the rest of the world. I think in the rest of the world, it's probably a lot more competitive. This came from Nash, from Flying Bantu. He said, if you win, I win. And he was just talking about the whole idea that if one of us wins, we all win, you know? And that's how it should be at the end of the day, like, especially in something like music.
Regarding some of the highs, there was a competition a couple of years back where we got into called Rocking the Daisies. Which was such a high and it's not that I want to live in the past but the beauty behind that was the rallying of 1000s of people to vote for you.
And the reason why that worked for us was not because they liked our music. It was because we were Zimbabwean. And you get to go and you're on a world stage playing on the same stage as Mac Miller and Hugh Masekela, it was unreal!
And I think just the support that came from Zimbabweans in the final round of voting was just a sheer poll on Facebook, And I think we got over 5000 votes, which was amazing. Apparently, some of my friends were telling me that they were calling each other saying WE won, what that represented was more than just us or our career”.