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Oliver Mtukudzi at Yoshi's San Francisco

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Oliver Mtukudzi & the Black SpiritsYoshi's Jazz Club San FranciscoJuly 21, 2013“Where we come from," the guitarist Oliver Mtukudzi tells the audience at Yoshi's in San Francisco, “music is like food. You can have it for breakfast, lunch and supper. Where we come from, you don't have to sing a song when you have nothing to say." He might well have added “Where we come from, music is a good time groove, but it also ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Oliver Mtukudzi: Tsimba Itsoka

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For better or worse, everyone leaves a mark on the world. That's the underlying theme of Oliver Mtukudzi's Tsimba Itsoka, which means “No foot, no footprint. Though only his second release since joining the Heads Up family in 2005, it's far from being a new thing for the Zimbabwe native. Nicknamed “Tuku by his fans, Mtukudzi has been a force for political and social change through music for more than thirty years. His early career included some ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Oliver Mtukudzi: Nhava

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It's been thirty years since Oliver “Tuku Mtukudzi released his debut single, and in that time the Zimbabwean superstar has managed to cement a very distinctive sound. Together with his Black Spirits band, Tuku has developed a fusion of traditional Shona music with other southern African idioms, colored by faint blues and country overtones, that somehow always seems uplifting, no matter how serious a message it may embody. Open ears around the world have caught on to his accessible sound, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Oliver Mtukudzi: Nhava

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The Heads Up Africa series has featured such artists as Hugh Masekela, Miriam Makeba, and Ladysmith Black Mambazo, there's nothing not to like about this music emerging from Southern Africa. This hit parade continues with Zimbabwean guitarist/vocalist Oliver Mtukudzi's Nhava. The album ("carrying bag in Shona) is a collection of advice, encouragement, and wisdom for travelers on a journey of life as they make their way through an often perilous world. “Every song on the album has something ...

AFRICAN JAZZ

Oliver Mtukudzi: Shanda

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He made the cover of Time magazine in March of 2003, and he's attracted a lot of listeners outside the following in his home country, but it's an unfortunate fact that most people haven't ever heard of Oliver Mtukudzi.

When John and Louise Riber decided to make a movie about the Zimbabwean pop star, they came upon the idea of a music video with a running documentary, and that's what ended up as Shanda. The key word there ...



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