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This chapter departs from the Mapfumo story to explore the world of mbira music and musicians, notably the life and music of Ephat Mujuru. A number of players of this traditional, hand-forged lamellophone describe how they became players. Accompanied by Mujuru, the author observes a bira ceremony, at which the instrument is used to attract the spirits of ancestors to possess a spirit medium. This context is contrasted with the secular use of mbira in Mapfumo’s music. The chapter concludes with a focus on how both sides of Zimbabwe’s liberation struggle tried to manipulate influential spirit mediums to their own advantage, ultimately with tragic consequences for the Mujuru family.

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