Malawi prisoners do the unheard of

15 February 2016
The Zomba Prison Band will find out in the next few hours if they will be the first Malawians to ever win a Grammy award!

One of the biggest nights in music is almost upon us but for a select group of Malawi inmates, the 16th of February will be an extra special evening.

Back in 2013, Ian Brennan, with a small group of his colleagues, entered the Zomba maximum security prison to work on a project that was unheard of in the South Eastern nation. He had plans to record an album sung and performed in its entirety by members of the prison population.

After defying the odds and working in less than ideal conditions, Brennan and the Zomba Prison Band completed the 'I Have No Everything Here' album. But the story doesn't end there. When the nominees for the illustrious Grammy awards were announced, there alongside the likes of Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Angelique Kidjo, Gilberto Gil and Anoushka Shankar, was the Zomba Prison Band's album. The first time Malawian musicians have ever been nominated!

Now the big evening is almost here and fingers, as well as toes are crossed for the inmates to make more history despite them not being able to attend the award show in person.

Win or lose though, there is no denying the positive impact the Zomba Prison Band's nomination has had not only on those who believed that good can seldom come out of a place like a prison but also for the prisoners themselves, many who are serving life sentences, that they can still do powerful things despite their situation.

The Grammy's will air on the 16th of Febraury at 03:00 on Channel O, DStv channel 320.

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