Robert Chindamba Banda who is popularly identified as Roberto is a Zambian singer, songwriter, producer, Zambia’s Radio Q FM presenter, scriptwriter and qualified computer programmer born in Chipata, Zambia in a musical family of nine. He produces music for himself as well as other artists at Brathahood Music where he is the CEO. His elder brother David Banda, whose stage name is General Ozzy, is also a professional musician (Collin,2018). Roberto developed an interest in music while still young due to the fact that both his parents were active musicians.
He was inspired by his brother, General Ozzy who is a rapper, to kick off his musical journey in 1996 as a rapper. However, he, later on, switched to RnB and Afro-pop music genres after getting inspiration from Usher’s song ‘My Way’. He lived in South Africa for some time, where he wrote songs and worked with popular South African artists such as Buso, Thebe and Boom Shaka. This gave him the confidence to begin his music career, and he recorded his first song at a studio owned by a member of Boom Shaka known as, Junior Sokhela.
In 2004, he produced a hip hop compilation named The Take-Off and it featured a couple of artists across Africa. In 2007, Roberto released an instant hit called ‘Operator’ which opened his doors to fame. He then dropped an album dubbed Roberto. He released his second album known as ‘Akasuba’ in 2009, which consisted of hits songs such as ‘Akasuba’, ‘Save our Love’ and ‘Don’t Say You Do’. In 2012, he released what is considered his most successful album, ‘My Name is…’. It consisted of hits such as ‘Good Woman’, ‘Love You More’, ‘Chawama’ and ‘Salaula’. In 2015, he released ‘Amanullah’ which became a mega-hit in most parts of Africa, making it the title for his next album.
He released his fifth studio album in 2017 which he titled Superstar, a name his late sister used to call him. On this album, he featured international artists; Mohombi from Belgium, Patoranking and Dammy Krane from Nigeria, Vanessa Mdee from Tanzania and Brathahood Crew and Joy Rox from Zambia. His other songs include; ‘She be Nice’ featuring Kenyan Gabu, ‘Contolola’ featuring Patoranking, ‘Vitamin U’ featuring Vanessa Mdee, ‘Beautiful’, ‘So Laka’, ‘African Woman’, ‘All Night Long’, ‘Am Gon Lover Her’, ‘Mailo’ (Tomorrow), ‘Took You’, ‘No One But You’, ‘Mvela Mushe’ ‘In Your Heart’, ‘Chitenge’, ‘Sembe Wenze Ndine’ among others.
He toured Uganda and Burundi alongside Ugandan music duo, Radio and Weasel after his song ‘Into You’ earned him Uganda’s most prestigious music awards, HiPipo Awards in 2018, as the Best Song in Southern Africa. He also performed on the same stage with American Grammy Award Winner, Eve, at the Doc Jubber Hockey Field Stadium in Windhoek, Namibia. He has also toured The United Kingdom, Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana and Zimbabwe.
Awards and Nominations
Besides HiPipo Awards in Uganda, he has been nominated and won the Zambian Music Awards a couple of times. He was also nominated for AFRIMMA Awards in 2016.