Dennis the Menace

By Julie Erusa

Photos by Glamour Studios

Many of us have grown up seeing Dennis the Menace a.k.a Dennis Mawanda presenting African Rhythms.  Well here is another side of him. He is a musician and he has been for a long time apparently.

Dennis grew up with the Afrigo band and he also plays percussions and therefore he has knowledge of percussion instruments.

Back in school, Denis used to write a few songs but his awakening was at St. Balikubembe, he thereby ventured into drama. In 1997, Dennis the Menace joined that Sabrina’s Pub Music Academy (he was on of the core crew) and the Pub has kept Karaoke alive and it’s responsible for the success of many artists from Chameleone, Maurice Kirya, Krayzie Native, Juliana Kanyomozi, Iryn Namubiru…(the list goes on).  Dennis goes on to say that Karaoke helped him to mature. 

He recorded a song with Shanks Vi Videe, Iryn Namubiru, Joe Tabula who had a band in Ndeeba.  Most of these guys are big now because they continued with their music careers, but with him and Parental influences he had to first do by his parents wish. So he went forward and studied music.

He considered the Blood Brothers as his best live band.  An he continues to say that with the following he has his full band; Data on the bass guitar, Alex or Isaac Zimbe on the drums, Simbwa or Godfrey Lubwama or Jude on the Key Board and lastly Edmond and Gordon on the Rhythm Guitar. 

He thus put a coma (not a full stop) to his music career and promised he would thus venture into that part of entertainment sometime in life again.  Dennis thus entered Radio and TV; he gave radio a break and stuck to TV till he decided to go back to Music.

At the moment he has a single called If that is out playing on all the radio stations, It was produced at Maestro Sounds. He wrote the song himself.  It has a setting of a Restaurant where there is a couple that portrays the image that they are very much in love yet the guy is cheating.  A fight breaks out.  The boy was not fair to the girl who had been there for her and after getting some money he cheats on her.  That is why he says “jangu kuwumuze” shoulder to cry on.

The problems faced include; accepting him for what he is and he continues to say that shooting a video is not easy since he is a perfectionist.

He gives credit to Timothy of Sanyu FM, Angello Ezama of Monitor, Moses Matovu, Frank Mbalire and Mukalazi and Maestro Sounds

The advice he gives the upcoming artists is to learn to be tolerant and patient.

Dennis the Menance performing at the PAMA Kampala Launch

Click here to listen to If Dr Proppa