By Ronnie Twinamasiko
“Thank you so much for coming. I did not expect this crowd. When you organise a show, you are immediately engulfed by worry because you don’t know whether people will come. Thank you. Thank you. I cannot thank you enough,” Judith Babirye is saying these words while I scuffle out of the Kampala Serena Hotel’s, Victoria hall.
She is overwhelmed. She is emotional. Clearly, she is moved. I dig that feeling. No one expects an artiste who has been off the radar for years to attract a vast crowd.
Serena is overflowing with revellers. And it proves that Judith is still loved. She has been missed. Having veered off the music streets to join politics, many thought she would never step on the music stage again.
No. She is still here. Her concert Mama Katonda Talimba has sent the signals. When she descended onto the stage, roars of delight exploded to welcome her.
Clad in a red winged glittering ensemble, Babirye opened the show with a performance of her latest songs, Ndikulinda, Katonda Talimba and a mix of old tracks. The energy wasn’t really there, except when she performed the big songs.
The show mostly attracted an honourable crowd, and among the notable figures that turned up include: Mama Fina, Mukasa Mbide, Kato Lubwama, Mary Karoro Okurut, Minister, Bakabulindi and Rebecca Kadaga who was the guest of honor.
No gathering of affluent folks is complete without splashing of cash. Mama Fina and Muhammad Nsereko flaunted 50k notes and launched into a brief battle of ‘who gives performers more money’
The emcee, Ruth Wanyana milked the opportunity by begging for money. She was given a number of notes by Mama Fina who, at some point when asked what she will be doing when Jesus returns said: “I will be giving to the unprivileged people.” She is a giver.
One of the major highlights of the night was when Kadaga joined the stage. She showcased her now cliché paka chini dance moves (Parliament should also make space for a dance studio because….)
Musicians Levixone, Joy Tendo, Kenneth music Pastor Wilson Bugembe and Rena Nalumansi were among those that performed.