By Martin Myers
What a devastating week for South African Music, with the news of Mandoza’s untimely passing .His song ‘Nkalakatha’ (township slang for “top dog”), released in 2000 with Gabi Le Roux, certainly shaped the new millennium and will leave a lasting legacy, one that all South Africans will be able to enjoy.
Onto brighter news, also with the aim of leaving a legacy…Concord Nkabinde has put together a show called ‘Nelson Mandela: The Song Lives On’, and it has its debut this weekend in Stellenbosch.
This is a new collaboration by Nkabinde, who as a bass guitarist has worked with some of South Africa’s top musicians such as Johnny Clegg, Abdullah Ibrahim, Hugh Masekela, Miriam Makeba, Zim Ngqawana, Darius Brubeck, Vusi Mahlasela, McCoy Mrubata, and many more.
As a composer, Nkabinde has written for commercial projects, film and TV programmes, dance and theatre pieces, as well as commissioned works for the SAMRO Foundation and UNISA Music Competitions
Then we have drummer David Klassen, who has become one of the “first call” drummers in South Africa. He has performed and/or recorded with countless artists, including Hugh Masekela, Gloria Bosman, Sibongile Mngoma, Danny K, Loyiso Bala, Amanda Strydom, Chris Cameleon, Ernie Smith, Mathys Roets and many more.
These two South African creative artists dig deep into their collective years of musical performance and production to deliver a performance piece that re-visits the essence and depth found in the words of one of the greatest humanitarians to have ever lived, Tata Nelson Mandela.
In the words of South Africa’s former president himself; “Music is a great blessing. It has the power to elevate and liberate us. It sets people free to dream. It can unite us to sing with one voice. Such is the value of music.”
Along with Klassen, Nkabinde has invited three well-established and highly respected Cape Town-based artists to collaborate on this concert: Mark Fransman, a highly accomplished saxophonist, pianist, flautist, vocalist, composer and music educator; Nomfundo Xaluva, a dynamic new voice in the music scene, who is also a pianist, composer and music educator; and Bulelwa Basse, a profound and prolific performance poet, language facilitator, speaker and community builder.
The result of this collaboration is a concoction of different musical styles, well thought out musical compositions and arrangements, expertly glued together by moments of improvisation. This five-piece outfit will deliver an experience that will remain in the hearts and minds of many, for years to come.
The first performance of ‘Nelson Mandela – The Song Lives On’ will take place on Friday, September 23, at 8.15pm at the Drostdy Theater in Stellenbosch.
Tickets are available from the Drostdy Theater at R100 each.
For more information, visit www.drostdyteater.co.za; send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org; or call 087 943 2459.