516

Various: African Guitar Kings

By

Sign in to view read count
Sheer Sound's new African Guitar Kings compilation features mostly original tunes by some of the most promising South African guitarists working today. From the opening African singing on the first track, "Common Dialogue," by Jimmy Dludlu, I was transported from my chilly homeland of England to the warmer climes of Africa. The harmonised vocals to Jimmy's guitar work really well on this original slow to mid-tempo piece.

Several other tracks offer a variety of interesting approaches. Musa Manzini's "Renaissance Song" blends bongos, female chorus singers, piano, a light mid-tempo Latin underlying rhythm... and, of course, Musa's unmistakable melodic bass. Then there is Blk Sonshine's "Born In A Taxi," which has the catchiest and most memorable chorus on this album: "Spend my time loving you." The tune was recorded on tour in California, and there is a definite combined African/West Coast American feel to this song.

Jonathon Butler's "I Found Myself In You" is another highlight. It really does remind me of Stevie Wonder recordings from the '70s. This track concentrates on his rich, powerful voice with an angry electric guitar and horn section, well in the background but not losing any of its effectiveness. Great stuff. Gito Baloi's tune "Hinkwafo" gave me a "by the sea" feel, just like George Duke's "Brazilian love affair" track did in the '80s, though this track is slower and more airy than the aforementioned hit.

There are no real down sides to this collection. Because it's a best of album, you can be sure that you are getting virtually nothing but the cream of South African guitar music... performed by masters of their craft in a smooth jazz style done the African way! If you don't know the seasoned artists on this album, then this makes a perfect springboard. It will have you searching the current and back catalogues looking for more. And if you do know them, then let this be a reminder of what a rich continent of jazz talent Africa really is.

Visit www.sheer.co.za and www.rerooted.com for more information.


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read I Believe In You CD/LP/Track Review I Believe In You
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 18, 2017
Read Morning Sun CD/LP/Track Review Morning Sun
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 18, 2017
Read The Conscience CD/LP/Track Review The Conscience
by John Sharpe
Published: August 18, 2017
Read Harlem CD/LP/Track Review Harlem
by James Nadal
Published: August 18, 2017
Read Open Book CD/LP/Track Review Open Book
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 17, 2017
Read Stolen Moments CD/LP/Track Review Stolen Moments
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 17, 2017
Read "Highsmith" CD/LP/Track Review Highsmith
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: July 7, 2017
Read "As It Should Be: Ballads 2" CD/LP/Track Review As It Should Be: Ballads 2
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 21, 2017
Read "TriAngular Bent" CD/LP/Track Review TriAngular Bent
by Dave Wayne
Published: September 22, 2016
Read "Viriditas" CD/LP/Track Review Viriditas
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 14, 2017
Read "3rio" CD/LP/Track Review 3rio
by Pascal-Denis Lussier
Published: May 1, 2017
Read "Prairie Burn" CD/LP/Track Review Prairie Burn
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: November 9, 2016

Sponsor: JANA PROJECT | LEARN MORE  

Support our sponsor

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.