Tsam gears up for maiden overseas gigs

Sagarias Tsam

Namibian traditional and blues singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Sagarias Tsam could not contain his excitement when talking to The Namibian recently about two upcoming gigs in Sion, Switzerland.

Born and raised on farm Keyser Boerdery Trust (Hiebes-Ost) outside Tsumeb, Tsam attended Ondundu Primary School at Mynplaas settlement on the outskirts of Tsumeb.

The self-taught acoustic guitarist will first stage a solo performance at the Redida Cultural Week Music Festival on 29 August, and is due to perform with his band on 31 August.

“This is definitely history in the making because I will be the first Namibian artist to grace the Redida international stage. This is a very exciting moment for me and I am wholeheartedly looking forward to showcase my God-given talent on foreign soil.

“Going overseas officially is a whole new experience for me, although I have been strumming my guitar at top events in front of massive crowds in South Africa. This is honestly the opportunity of a lifetime for me to sell my music to the world,” Tsam said.

Now based at Swakopmund, the gifted singer still maintains his day job at the legendary Young Ones Music Shop, where he met Mike Lichtman, who is based in Switzerland.

“I have to thank Mike for playing a pivotal role in facilitating my Swiss gigs. Who could have imagined that a farm boy from Tsumeb would one day board a plane, fly over the continent and oceans to go perform at a high profile festival like Redida?

“I am overwhelmed and my level of excitement is indescribable. I can’t thank my friend Mike enough and I am seriously hoping that the Swiss people will embrace me and like my music,” Tsam said.

According to Tsam, he approached the event organisers last year and was accepted to be part of this year’s line-up, alongside his four-member band.

The Sion regional integration office and its partners stage the Redida Cultural Music Festival, which is designed to promote the integration of Swiss citizens and foreigners in a spirit of openness and solidarity.

Through his music, Tsam embodies the resilience and creativity of his Namibian roots which is reminiscent of the transformative power of music to connect and inspire.

Although he started doing music in 2021, Tsam remains relatively unknown in his country of birth, as he is largely exposed to the South African music scene where he is a prominent performer at music festivals like the Oesterfees, Riaan Smit Live, Woordfees and Liefde by die Nam.

He is also billed to perform at Vegkop Stadium in South Africa for the second time on 21 September.

Ironically, Tsam, who also rocked the Madisa Festival, Indie Music Festival and Camp Rock stages, has never featured at the Windhoek Jazz Festival, as he did not get enough votes to secure a spot at the recent event, headlined by South African international star Jonathan Butler.

Now armed with one album ‘Nama He Ta Ge Ha’, which was released in 2021, and a single ‘Wat Ons Nodig Het’ which he dropped in 2023, Tsam looks absolutely poised to win over Swiss festival revellers with his exceptional playing skills.

Tsam, who mainly sings in his native Hei //Hom language, has also released popular hits such as ‘Nama He Ta Geha’, ‘//Haeb Ge A !Nuburo’, ‘Da //Amero-Tse’ and ‘Habidure-Hina’.

Stay informed with The Namibian – your source for credible journalism. Get in-depth reporting and opinions for only N$85 a month. Invest in journalism, invest in democracy –
Subscribe Now!

Latest News