Despite the advancement of music technology, Sundelite has discovered that audio cassettes are hot cakes than compact discs (CDs).
"We sell over 100, 000 copies of cassettes per month as compared to 20,000 copies of CDs," Starneck Kulemero, manager of OG Issa's Afri Music Company, said.
The company, established in the 70s, is the country's main music distributor, with a branch in Lilongwe.
Why tapes than CDs?
"Tapes will stay forever unless something happens. Most people and musicians resort to tapes than CDs because the possibilities of duplicating a CD are very high. In short they are more prone to piracy than tapes," Kulemero said.
Any other reason?
"Most tapes fair well in rural areas where there is no technology.Most people in the rural areas who are our major buyers still have cassette players because they cannot afford to buy a CD player, while most people in urban areas prefer CDs because they are easy to duplicate as computers are almost in every homes," the manager said.
The company said it has a big market for tapes even in neighbouring countries such as Zambia and Mozambique.
"We even reversed our decision to buy a classic CD machine because we realised that there is no market for CDs in the country but only tapes," he said.
The power of tapes was collaborated by Citinati Music Centre in Limbe.
"Tapes sale as hot cakes, while CDs are slow," sales officer Ejah Pelekani Besamu, said.
"Tapes have proved to be people's favourite than CDs.We usually make a killing out of tapes than CDs. For instance, we have high demand for Fikisa tapes than the CDs," he said.
What are musicians saying?
One of Malawi's music icons Lucius Banda admitted on the current trend on the music market, attributing it to the high levels of poverty among Malawians.
"It is just unfortunate that due to high levels of poverty most people cannot afford to replace tapes with CDs. This failure to adopt the change speaks volumes on how poor we are as a nation," he said.
The 'Soldier' said that this also showed that Malawians are not ready to dig deeper into their pockets to buy CDs for the sake of quality.
"Most people, especially those driving cars, have also realised that it is better to use tapes because they are durable and can live up to 10 years than CDs which cannot even last five months," he said.
But the former lawmaker says: I still prefer CDs than tapes because they are more profitable.
"In every CD, I make a profit of K400 while in every tape I make a profit of K30. This means in every one CD, there are 12 cassettes," he said.
Cleric-cum-gospel artist Chimwemwe Mhango, who is also president of the Musicians Association of Malawi (Mam) concurred with Banda that the durability of CDs and absence of technology in most parts of the country are some of the reasons which have seen tapes still making impact on the music market.
"CDs crash easily and it is easy to lose it than a tape. For instance, I still keep the tape I produced in 1989 but the CD I produced three years ago is no where to be seen," he said.
Mhango said this development will pedal back the growth of the music industry as it will not be catching up with technological development.
"CDs have high quality sounds than tapes and if our fans are able to enjoy quality music then it is health to use CDs than tapes," he said.
He said unless the influx of technology reaches the rural area, CDs will start making impact on the music market.
"It depends on your target audience, if you sing for the rural masses then you should target tapes but if you target urban people, it is advisable to go for CDs because most of them don't keep those tape gadgets," he said.