The last few months have seen songbird Selmor Mtukudzi collaborating with some of the biggest names in Africa and the world music circles as the all-star girl empowerment ensemble song, Strong Girl, gains popularity.
However, the cherry on top for the Zimbabwean artiste was her collaboration with famed musician, philanthropist and U2 front-man Bono with whom she shared studio time in Nigeria last week.
The two were part of a group of all-star world and African musicians that worked on the remix of Strong Girl. Also working on the remix of the song were Nigerian superstars Da��banj and Banky W. The original song which is part of the a�?Poverty is Sexista�? campaign by the ONE Campaign, an advocacy organisation founded by Bono, featured Judith Sephuma (South Africa), Victoria
Kimani (Kenya), Vanessa Mdee (Tanzania), Arielle T (Gabon) and Waje (Nigeria) among other artistes. Nigerian Nollywood actress Omotola Jalade, popularly known as Sexy Omo was the star of the subsequent video.
In an interview, the Afro-jazz musician described the collaboration as a dream come true, saying that she had been honoured to have shared studio time with one of the most recognisable faces on the international musicA� scene.
a�?I never imagined I would find myself in the studio with someone like him and it is truly an honour to work with such a titan in the music world. Ita��s really hard to describe the experience, she said.
Selmor said although people might have their misconceptions of how Bono and other world renowned music figures behaved, she was pleasantly surprised by his easy-going nature.
a�?I think when you see him on TV or in videos you might think, as people usually do, that he is a pompous celebrity. When you meet him in person however you discover that he is the most down to earth person that you can ever meet,a�? she said.
The songbird also revealed that she had learnt a lesson in humbleness from the way that the musician conducted himself, as he did not treat some of his lesser known collaborators with disdain.
a�?We made music, went out, ate and drank together but he was very humble throughout the process. For me it was eye opening to see someone who is that big on the music scene being able to relate to everyone else. It showed that despite all the popularity he has not let fame get to his head,a�? she said.
Mtukudzi said the last few months had given her international profile a much needed boost, as she has been able to share ideas and work with some of the biggest artistes around the globe.
a�?Ita��s been a great ride and working with not only Bono, but the likes of Da��banj, who is considered one of the most bankable musicians in Africa has been a great boost for me,a�? she said.
She said despite the continental focus of the Strong Girl song, she was going to up the ante on her women empowerment efforts at home, where she is already working with a number of gender equality advocacy organisations.