Alcohol addiction has affected the ordinary and famous alike with devastating consequences for several entertainers worldwide.
Local celebrities are not immune to the scourge; with promising Sungura musician Paradzai Mesi admitting that the love of the beer bottle has turned his life upside down.
Paradzai Mesi might be known for being a talented sungura musician behind hits such as “Tiri Huruva” and “Masimba Towedzera”, but the musician has also risen to notoriety for alcohol abuse, a habit which has negatively affected his career.
Last week the “Pahukama” hitmaker hogged the limelight for the wrong reasons, after he was arrested and charged with theft for stealing groceries from a tuckshop in Glendale.
A visit by the ZBC News to his Kiaora Farm home in Glendale, opened a can of worms, with the man who seems to have exchanged his guitar and microphone for a beer bottle, attributing the recent unfortunate incident to drunkenness.
“I was very drunk and it was late. I met some guys who said they wanted to take me home. They took me to the complainant’s home and lied to me that we had arrived at my residence. I slept on the floor and the next morning I woke up surrounded by a lot of people. I was accused of stealing from the shop but I don’t know what really transpired since I was drunk. The shop owner has however withdrawn the charges,” he said.
Born in 1972 in Mazowe District, Mesi assumed the reigns at Njerama Boys in 2000, three years after the band was formed.
They released an album “Zviripachena” which propelled them to stardom.
Mesi became a household name, writing his own success story with several properties to his name.
However, in the late 2000s, Mesi fell from grace forcing him to relocate to a farm in Glendale.
Noone summed up his downfall better than his neighbours who have seen light turning into darkness right before their eyes.
“Mesi is gifted but it seems he continues to struggle with his drinking problem which is ruining his career. However, we will not give up on him until he rediscovers what made him the household name he is up to this day,” said a neighbour.
His son Willis, who is also part of Njerama Boys, also described his father as a drunken master whose penchant for illicit brews is impacting negatively his music career.
“He spends most of his time drunk with his favourite brew Ranger. My father is so talented that if it wasn’t first his love for beer, he could be a very successful musician,” he said,
His manager Andy Alfred is also a worried man.
“We are trying to rehabilitate him because beer is affecting his career. The man is super talented but his excess love for beer is destroying his career. However, we are doing our best to ensure that his career is revived. This weekend we are having a show in Chitungwiza and I encourage our fans to come and support the man,” said Alfred.
The musician has however not given up as he reckons his best days are yet to come if he gets the necessary support.
As ironic as it might sound, Mesi who is adamant the brown bottle isn’t doing his career any harm, urges young artists to desist from alcohol abuse.
“I would like to urge young artists to desist from alcohol abuse. It is not good for them.”
The musician who was part of the recently held Independence Gala, seems to be determined to revive his music career since he is set to release an album in June, which will be preceded by a single.
Mesi is also set to perform at Club Joy Centre in Chitungwiza this Friday.- ZBC News