There is no doubt that Larry Maluma’s career has been a long and tough one having left Zambia when he was about to reach near-stardom status and having to go and start all over again far from home. Larry was born in Zambia and relocated to Australia in 1985. He is an accomplished musician, composer and singer. He sings in English and his native languages including Nyanja, Bemba and Tonga languages adopting styles which he uses to blend his own unique brand of African Roots Reggae music. Larry records with some of the finest musicians in Australia. With many of the musicians regarded as Australia’s leading session musicians, the individual and collective brilliance of the musicians respectively assures a diverse sound which encompasses complex African rhythms, Roots reggae and luscious jazz funk horns.
The resulting unique sound put some of his songs at the top of the Zambian charts. One of his previous albums, Tusekelele (Let’s Celebrate) was hailed as one of the most impressive albums of 2009 and one of the most admirable albums to be associated with African music. Larry Maluma has so far released 12 albums and more than 15 music video clips which have been aired on the ABC television program, Rage, SBS, Channel 9 and many other TV and radio shows in Australia including Triple J, 3RRR, PBS FM, Triple R and in other countries including Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa.
Since arriving in Australia Larry has broaden the Australian perspective of African music. A recognised and popular music star in his native Zambia, Larry is a major contributor to the African roots and reggae scene in Australia.
He has headlined festivals such as Apollo Bay Music Festival, Bellingen Global Carnival and the Globe to Globe World Music Festival. He was also a special guest for Jimmy Cliff, Wailers and Angelique Kidjo to mention a few.
In January 2004, he was asked by two members of MMM International to assist with the Zambian project ‘The African Dream’, a project which assists underprivileged children in Zambia. He donated his songs which were compiled on the compilation ‘Larry Maluma – A Good Cause’. The compilation contains a mixture of songs sung in two of Zambia’s 72 languages, Bemba and Nyanja. The songs chosen are from five of Larry’s album releases. Half of the proceeds from the sale of the CD were channeled towards the “African Dream” project. Another song ‘Punzisani Aana’ (Teach the Children) taken from his 1993 album ‘Man & Woman’ is used in a couple of documentaries on children’s and adult’s blindness. His 12th album ‘Ulemu’ (Respect), ( The Zambian lost tapes ’84-’85) is actually his first album. It was recorded between 1984 and ’85 in Zambia and released in 2015, thirty years later. Some of his songs which were recorded in the early ‘90s are just starting to appear on compilation albums in USA and UK
In 2015, Larry Maluma was honoured with a Life Time Achievement Award
He is currently recording a new album.
‘Kalindawalo’, a Zambian traditional song from my 3rd album titled Hallelujah released in 1991 appears 27 years later on a Putumayo World Music album called ‘Kid’s African Party’. https://putumayokids.bandcamp.com/album/kids-african-party