Veteran Dar artiste passes on

11Jul 2020
The Guardian Reporter
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Veteran Dar artiste passes on

TANZANIA's dance music has one again been dealt a blow as veteran musician, Iqbal Varda, passed away in Dar es Salaam on June 26.

Varda, also a prominent poet, was a pioneer of renowned music group, Varda Arts, which enjoy great following in domestic music scene from 1980s right up to the 1990s.

Varda Arts Band leader, Aziz Varda, disclosed Iqbal had suffered acute jaundice. He passed away aged 73.

Aziz stated his brother's death turns out to be a big blow to Varda Arts Band given he was one of the top most musicians in the band, which was entirely made up of the Varda family members.

''His contribution to music in the country was immense, he served the countryvia his musical talent performing in countless charity shows for the less privileged the country,'' Aziz disclosed.

Aziz said Iqbal, as a result, won plenty of prizes. He pointed out that Iqbal was a pious person who always separated his income from his earning to spend in a good cause.

Aziz also stated that Iqbal was not addicted to either any type of drugs or drinks.

The Varda Arts Band leader noted as the eldest brother in the band, Iqbal always guided his younger brothers to fear God and show humility, compassion and give service to the society through the talent bestowed by God.

Aziz said Iqbal was barely seven years old when he won the top prize in the children singing competition at Mnazi Mmoja in Dar es Salaam during Eid celebration in June 1954.

''Since then he decided to turn into a musician and learned the art of playing such musical instruments like Harmonium and Tabla from the family's father,'' Aziz noted.

''The family's father and uncles too were notable musicians with their band known as Varda Brothers during the 1950s and 1960s.''

Aziz further said Iqbal inspired many youths of that era including his brothers who later on turned out to be prominent musicians in the 1980s.

He said they rose to prominence after Varda Arts had been formed and registered in 1980.

The group, he noted, is still active, performing at various hotels in the city.

Aziz disclosed Iqbal's phenomenal success is having been honoured to entertain 2000 Members of Parliament during the first party election at Kizota, Dodoma in 1985.

The band leader disclosed Iqbal's lifetime achievement is to have performed in the presence of the Father of the Nation Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere, the second President, Ali Hassan Mwinyi, the third President Benjamin William Mkapa, the fourth President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, and the former Organization of Africa Unity (OAU)'s Secretary General, Salim Ahmed Salim.

''Iqbal leaves behind a widow and daughters. One of his daughters has married in South Africa and the other lives with her spouse in Indonesia,'' Aziz stated.

IPP Limited, via the firm's official Innocent Njovu, offered its heart felt condolences to the family of the deceased and pray to God that He may grant His nearness.