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ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

South African Saliency: Reza Khota, Carlo Mombelli, Andrew Lilley, and Mandisi Dyantyis

Read "South African Saliency: Reza Khota, Carlo Mombelli, Andrew Lilley, and Mandisi Dyantyis" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

As sure as the sun will shine on Chapman's Peak and the winds will sweep over Table Mountain, South Africa will continue to flourish and birth new music worthy of worldwide attention. The West may typically pay little to no mind to South African jazz and the artists who shape it, but that has yet to ...

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

Dan Bilawsky's Best Releases of 2018

Read "Dan Bilawsky's Best Releases of 2018" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Every little bit of the year 2018 will soon take form as memory--first recent, then distant--but the fine music gifted to us in those twelve months will be forever present, living on in ears, hearts and minds. I had the pleasure of hearing north of 400 albums this past year, and I had the privilege of ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Nicky Schrire: Permission to Be Yourself

Read "Nicky Schrire: Permission to Be Yourself" reviewed by Seton Hawkins



To follow the recordings of Cape Town-based vocalist and composer Nicky Schrire is to watch an artist evolve right in front of your eyes. With her 2012 debut Freedom Flight, Schrire demonstrated a supple soprano vocal technique and a knack for intelligent arrangements of unusual repertoire choices. Following it up the next year with ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Mabuta: Welcome To This World

Read "Welcome To This World" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

If the eyes are the windows to the soul and a portal opening to reality and closing on dreams, then the eyelids can be seen as the gatekeepers to such worlds. Mabuta--a genre-merging band taking its name from the Japanese word for eyelid--has a keen understanding of that concept. Shane Cooper, the mastermind behind this group, ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Thandi Ntuli: On Exile

Read "Thandi Ntuli: On Exile" reviewed by Seton Hawkins



South African pianist, composer, and vocalist Thandi Ntuli entered 2018 not with a bang, but with a thermonuclear blast. At the close of 2017, she had been selected as the recipient of the 2018 Standard Bank Young Artist Award in Jazz, anointing her as the latest figure in an incredible lineage of South African ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Mandla Mlangeni: Born to Be

Read "Mandla Mlangeni: Born to Be" reviewed by Seton Hawkins

Mandla Mlangeni has been engaged. The South African trumpeter, composer, and bandleader oversees three groups, notably the Amandla Freedom Ensemble and the Tune Recreation Committee. Additionally, his works are marked by an intense effort to explore and connect with social discourse in the country today. Indeed, from the Tune Recreation Committee's naming nod to South Africa's ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Bokani Dyer: African Piano

Read "Bokani Dyer: African Piano" reviewed by Seton Hawkins

Throughout this decade, pianist, composer, and bandleader Bokani Dyer has stood as one of the most formidable and creative keyboard talents in South Africa today. Raised in a musical family--his father is the legendary saxophonist Steve Dyer--Bokani Dyer quickly demonstrated an extraordinary musical vision and identity of his own. Indeed, albums of his, notably Emancipate the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Bokani Dyer Trio: Neo Native

Read "Neo Native" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

In pianist Bokani Dyer's Neo Native we find a pact between the ideals of advancement and atavism. This rising star on the South African scene and international stage merges modernistic language with traditional streams with this malleable trio, creating a unique signature that's both indebted to his homeland's history and free of clichés.

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ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Lwanda Gogwana: Tradition and Innovation

Read "Lwanda Gogwana: Tradition and Innovation" reviewed by Seton Hawkins

When South African trumpet virtuoso Lwanda Gogwana released his second album Uhadi Synth (Lwanda Gogwana Music Group, 2016) last year, he reinforced his position not only as one of South Africa's truly exceptional horn talents, but also as one of its most probing and insightful artists and composers.

The title of the album itself--the ...

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

Dan Bilawsky's Best Releases of 2016

Read "Dan Bilawsky's Best Releases of 2016" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Another year is almost in the books. And while there were many things to fret about in 2016, a lack of good music wasn't one of them. A quick look back at the year reminds us that jazz legends remain strong, rising stars continue to rapidly ascend, newcomers are making their presence felt, and the dearly ...