From Jazztown to Makhanda
The sounds of award-winning jazz from South Africa’s musical past and present head to Makhanda (formerly Grahamstown) this 27 June – 7 July for the 32nd edition of the celebrated Standard Bank Jazz Festival.
Bombshelter Beast is one of Marcus Wyatt’s latest projects – unconventional, skillful and wonderfully entertaining. This star-studded ensemble combines old-school Kwaito with House, Drum n’ Bass, Dancehall, Dub, Ska, Balkan, Boeremusiek, Hip Hop, Ghoema, Rock, and sneaky bits of Jazz – all laced together with singing, rapping and live improvisations. And please don’t try to put the chairs back – we want to you to dance!
Marcus Wyatt (trumpet), Pule (MC), Deone Song (voice), Mihi Matshingana (voice), Sisonke Xonti (sax), Janus van der Merwe (sax), Justin Sasman (trombone, accordion), Murray Buitendag (trombone), Alex Hitzeroth (sousaphone), Michael Bester (guitar), Romy Brauteseth (bass), Riaan van Rensburg (drums)
Thursday 27 June 20:30
Coco Zhao & Huang Juanji
Renowned Cape Town acoustic duo, Facing South – guitarist David Ledbetter and vocalist Amanda Tiffin – teams up with visiting Brazilian maestro pianist/accordionist Guilherme Ribeiro and internationally acclaimed Dutch bassist Hein van de Geyn to present cross-cultural, acoustic magic. The quartet performs a selection of original material with a cross-cultural flavour, with compositions and collaborations from all members of the ensemble. The music is featured on their upcoming album release, recorded in Cape Town.
Amanda Tiffin (voice), Guilherme Ribeiro (accordion - BR), David Ledbetter (guitar), Hein van de Geyn (bass)
Friday 28 June 19:00
Funk Big Band
Ladysmith Black Mambazo
With 5 Grammy awards and 16 Grammy nominations since 1988, Ladysmith Black Mambazo is South Africa’s premier musical group, having released more than 65 albums since their 1970 recording debut.
The a cappella group combines isicathamiya with traditional Zulu dance and their international success offers a powerful message about the importance of honouring one’s culture. Their collaboration with Paul Simon in 1985 launched them onto the global stage and they have collaborated with a fascinating mix of musicians since, including Dolly Parton, Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder.
Mdletshe Mazibuko, Mpindela Mazibuko, Msizi Shabalala, Thulani Shabalala, Thamsanqa Shabalala, Mfanafuthi Dlamini, Sibongiseni Shabalala, Sabelo Mthembu and Pius Shezi
Guy Butler Theatre, Monument
Saturday 6 July 14:00
Mabuta Shane Cooper
“Mabuta” is Japanese for “eyelid” – “If you want to enter the dream world,” explains bandleader Shane Cooper, “first you have to close your eyes. I want our music to allow you to enter the dream world.”
The SBYA and SAMA award-winning bassist and composer describes the project as a blend of his two long-time musical passions of jazz and electronic music, with a smidgeon of World Music. Mabuta is undoubtedly one of the freshest and most innovative sounds featured in the South African contemporary jazz scene today.
Shane Cooper (bass), Sisonke Xonti (sax), Robin Fassie-Kock (trumpet), Reza Khota (guitar), Bokani Dyer (piano), Marlon Witbooi (drums)
Sunday 30 June 17:00
Mandisi Dyantyis began playing the trumpet at an early age. Whilst studying at UCT he was selected for the Standard Bank National Youth Big Band in 2003 and 2004 and the Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Band in 2005. He returns to perform in Makhanda for the first time in 14 years – a matured, versatile musician who is also a composer, arranger, educator and producer, not only in Jazz but also western classical and African indigenous music.
Mandisi Dyantyis (voice, trumpet), Buddy Wells (sax), Blake Hellaby (piano), Stephen de Souza (bass), Lumanyano Mzi (drums)
Saturday 29 June 17:00
Mandla Mlangeni Amandla Freedom Ensemble
Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz 2019 Mandla Mlangeni’s second SBYA performance explores a different side to his music – he intends it to be an “odyssey of musical meditation and healing; a journey into the less travelled where sonic realms are constantly in flux.” Mlangeni uses his peers as the foundation of the group, but then asks three musical elders to join him for inspiration in drawing from the past to reach a new present.
Mandla Mlangeni (trumpet), Nhlanhla Mahlangu (sax), Simon Manana (sax), Ariel Zamonsky (bass), Gontse Makhene (perc), Siphiwe Shiburi (drums) + Salim Washington (sax) & Andile Yenana (piano) & Louis Moholo-Moholo (drums)
Thursday 4 July 20:30
Mandla Mlangeni Tune Recreation Committee
Mandla Mlangeni is this year’s Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz. Mandla’s three central interests are clear – a deep interest in his African heritage; a passionate musical inquisitiveness; and a strong political awareness. These three sources of stimulation have led him through explorations of avant garde African jazz to his own fascinating compositions. Mlangeni has an ability to harness the great musicians around him and a passion to continue driving forward. He is keeping alive the old sounds of South Africa and moving them into a new space around the world.
Mandla Mlangeni (trumpet), Mark Fransman (sax), Afrika Mkhize (piano), Reza Khota (guitar), Nicholas Williams (bass), Clement Benny (drums)
Friday 28 June 17:00
SA Norwegian Youth Band
The Jazz Festival opens with musical and social activist Salim Washington.His latest works are inspired by the idea of Sankofa, the mythical Ghanaian bird that has come to represent the return of the African diaspora.Washington performs original compositions and homages to other revolutionary composers, with a jazz style that aims to “contemplate the state of life and culture in South Africa, while supporting pan-African consciousness”. For this special ensemble, he brings together musicians with a Durban background whom he feels share his sentiments about music and life.
Salim Washington (sax), Phumlani Mtiti (sax), Sakhile Simani (trumpet), Afrika Mkhize (piano), Dalisu Ndlazi (bass), Ayanda Sikade (drums), Zoe Masuku (voice)
Thursday 27 June 17:00
Standard Bank National Schools’ Big Band
Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Band
The Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Band presents a selection of the top young jazz musicians in the country between the ages of 19 and 25 years.This year the band is under the musical direction of renowned South African pianist Afrika Mkhize, the Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz for 2012, who has worked with leading musicians in the country and has begun to produce some of the most interesting compositions and arrangements available.
Monday 1 July 20:30
Too Many Zooz
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