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MUSICIAN Born:

Hugh Masekela

Hugh Masekela was a world-renowned flugelhornist, trumpeter, bandleader, composer, singer and defiant political voice who remained deeply connected at home, while his international career sparkled. He was born in the town of Witbank, South Africa in 1939. At the age of 14, the deeply respected advocator of equal rights in South Africa, Father Trevor Huddleston, provided Masekela with a trumpet and, soon after, the Huddleston Jazz Band was formed. Masekela began to hone his, now signature, Afro-Jazz sound in the late 1950s during a period of intense creative collaboration, most notably performing in the 1959 musical King Kong, written by Todd Matshikiza, and, soon thereafter, as a member of the now legendary South African group, the Jazz Epistles (featuring the classic line up of Kippie Moeketsi, Abdullah Ibrahim and Jonas Gwangwa). In 1960, at the age of 21 he left South Africa to begin what would be 30 years in exile from the land of his birth

Rejoice

Label: World Circuit
Released: 2020
Track listing: Robbers, Thugs and Muggers; Agbada Bougou; Coconut Jam; Never (Lagos Never Gonna Be the Same; Slow Bones; Jabulani (Rejoice, Here Comes Tony); Obama Shuffle Strut Blues; We've Landed.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Tony Allen & Hugh Masekela: Rejoice

Read "Rejoice" reviewed by Chris May

"Unfinished" is the kindest word to describe this album, recorded in 2010 and left on the shelf until its release was prompted after Hugh Masekela passed in 2018. It should have stayed on the shelf. The album consists of eight tracks of noodling by Masekela, accompanied by autopilot timekeeping from Tony Allen, who ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Benjamin Boone: Joy

Read "Joy" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Benjamin Boone's set with this band born and grown in Ghana is a genuine cross-cultural jazz Joy. The seeds of Joy were planted when composer-saxophonist Boone spent a year as a US Fulbright Scholar in Ghana in sabbatical from his professorship at California State University (Fresno), to study the country's music and musical traditions. ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Tony Allen, Hugh Masekela, Luciana Souza, Dave Douglas & Other New Releases

Read "Tony Allen, Hugh Masekela, Luciana Souza, Dave Douglas & Other New Releases" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

We may be in lock-down mode but oustading jazz releases keep coming out as if nothing were of the COVID and the social distancing, bringing us much needed relief. One more reason to pay tribute to today's artists and to encourage everyone to support the music scene by purchasing music directly from the musicians and labels ...

Innervisions, Improvisations and Other Jazz Fevers

Read "Innervisions, Improvisations and Other Jazz Fevers" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Lili Añel Better Days Winding Way Records 2019 Singer-songwriter Lili Añel and Better Days sound cut straight out of the northeast US. It's more than the geographic location of Añel's birth (Spanish Harlem, “El Barrio," in New York) or raised (South Bronx), and it's more than ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Jazz From South Africa - Hugh Masakela, Abdullah Ibrahim, Johnny Dyani (1960 - 1978)

Read "Jazz From South Africa - Hugh Masakela, Abdullah Ibrahim, Johnny Dyani (1960 - 1978)" reviewed by Russell Perry

The brutal repression of the subversive mixed-race jazz subculture in South Africa led to the emigration of several important musicians whose work in the United States and Europe helped focus the world's attention on the apartheid regime in the 1960s and 1970's. Prominent among the emigres are pianist Abdullah Ibrahim, who originally recorded as Dollar Brand, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Shabaka & the Ancestors: We Are Sent Here By History

Read "We Are Sent Here By History" reviewed by Chris May

Reed player Shabaka Hutchings became the first British musician to sign to the iconic (for once the word is justified) Impulse! label when his band Sons of Kemet did so in 2018. It was a deal for which his management could rightly be proud. It was also an affirmation which Hutchings felt deeply, for in the ...

Masekela '66 - '76

Label: Wrasse Records
Released: 2019
Track listing: CD1: The Emancipation Of Hugh Masekela: A Felicadee; Why Are You Blowing My Mind; She Doesn’t Write; Do Me So La So So; Ha Lese Le Di Khana; What Is Wrong With Groovin’; Child Of The Earth. Hugh Masekela Is Alive And Well At The Whiskey: Son Of Ice Bag; Coincidence. The Promise Of A Future: Grazing In The Grass; Bajubula Bonke (The Healing Song); Vuca; There Are Seeds To Sow. Masekela: Mace And Grenades; Boermusiek; Gold; Blues For Huey; Gafsa; Is There Anybody Out There.

CD2: Reconstruction: You Keep Me Hangin’ On; Woza; Salele Mane. Hugh Masekela And The Union Of South Africa: Mamani; Caution; Hush (Somebody’s Calling My Name). Home Is Where The Music Is: Minawa. Introducing Hedzholleh Soundz: Languta; Kaa Ye Oya; Adade; Yei Baa Gbe Wolo; Patience; When; Nye Tamo Ame; Rekpete.

CD3:I Am Not Afraid: Jungle Jim; African Secret Society; Nina; Been Such A Long Time Gone. The Boy's Doin' It: Ashiko; Mama; The Boy’s Doin’ It. Colonial Man: A Song For Brazil; Colonial Man; Whitch Doctor.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The Darius Brubeck Quartet: Live In Poland

Read "Live In Poland" reviewed by Chris May

Early on in his career, the pianist Darius Brubeck bowed to the inevitable. Accepting that he was always going to be compared to his father, Dave Brubeck, he both embraced his heritage and sidelined it. In the 1970s, embracing it, he was a member of Two Generations Of Brubeck and The New Brubeck Quartet, groups which ...


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