The 19th edition of the incredibly popular Cape Town International Jazz Festival (CTIJF) will be lighting up the city on Friday and Saturday, March 23 and 24. One of the undisputed highlights of the Festival is a timely tribute to Africa’s greatest jazz icon – and long-time friend of the festival – the late Hugh Masekela. Celebrating his long history with the CTIJF, from performing at the very first festival in 2000, to his many on-stage appearances over the years, this emotional tribute, ‘The Boy’s Doin’ It: A Celebration of Hugh Masekela’s Life & Music’ is endorsed by the Masekela family.
Cape Town International Jazz Festival Director, Billy Domingo sums up this year’s line-up: “The 2018 offering encompasses the full scale of the jazz genre. This line-up showcases diverse cultures and musical styles to reveal the complexity of the music, to inspire, uplift and energise. It also presents the opportunity to indulge in a moment of quiet reflection. It’s an exciting programme with something for everyone and I’m really looking forward to sharing it with our audience, loyal festinos and new visitors to the festival. This year it is only natural that we pay tribute to the great Bra Hugh, and I am especially proud of the celebration the Masekela family have put together to honour his incredible legacy.”
Cape Town International Jazz Festival 2018 artist attractions:
Few African musicians have captured the essence of the continent’s sound as has Hugh Masekela (1939 – 2018). For 78 years, South Africa was gifted with a phenomenal innovator who impacted African jazz with a unique brass tone and storytelling style that transcended the societal divide. For CTIJF 2018, a potent line-up of some of the country’s best players will present ‘The Boy’s Doin’ It: A Celebration of Hugh Masekela’s Life & Music’, highlighting the genius of this influential trumpeter, flugelhorn-player, singer and composer. Whether he was breathing life into poignant heritage jazz or collaborating with hip young stars, this legend created timeless music which resonated with young and old. This tribute will revisit the work of this remarkable showman, showcasing his succinct lyricism. Festival goers can expect evergreens from the Masekela songbook – township anthems that carry the weight of our history but live on to inspire and convey the abundant joy of rootsy Afro fusion.
New Orleans act Tank and the Bangas (USA) has a knack for combining styles – fiery soul, deft hip hop, deep-groove R&B and subtle jazz – into one dazzling, cohesive whole that evokes the scope of New Orleans music while retaining a unique feel of its own. “It’s music that can’t really be put in a box,” says singer/poet Tarriona “Tank” Ball. Her charisma helped the five-piece win NPR’s 2017 Tiny Desk Concert Contest, plus a signing to Verve Records.
Southern swagger, Jamaican blood, with a South African name, Masego (USA) is a Gumbo of culture and creativity. His music is best described as TrapHouseJazz. Masego’s journey began on YouTube. He put 10000 hours into live looping with his saxophone, beat machine and keyboard. Masego used to rip beats from SoundCloud’s future beat and house producers, added saxophone over them, then headed to Instagram to dedicate the song to a curly hair beauty from his explore page. His soulful singing and his jazzy personality coloured every track and heart and caught the attention of many producers like Kaytranada, Sounwav, and new greats like KRS and Medasin.
The house and hip hop rap of dance/electro duo Black Motion (SA) has seen them clinch SAMA Awards for Best Duo/Group of the Year and Best Dance Album. Smol and DJ Murder teamed up to form Black Motion in 2010. Their breakthrough came when they joined Spirit Motion and produced the hit single ‘Banane Mavoko’. Dj Oskido went on to license the song for his compilation CD ‘Oskido’s 10th Commandment’. Together these musos explore the dynamism and synchronicity of their musical careers. Their album highlights have included ‘Talking to the Drums’, ‘Fortune Teller’ and ‘Ya Badimo’ – house music for the ancestors.
The Cape Town International Jazz Festival 2018 Full Artist Line-Up includes:
Alistair Izobell (SA), Amanda Black (SA), Billy Monama: GrazRoots Project (SA), Black Motion (SA), Blinky Bill & Sibot’s Afrofunk Spaceship (SA/ KENYA), Claire Phillips (SA), Corinne Bailey Rae (UK), espYoungLegend 2018 Jarrad Ricketts (SA), “The Boy’s Doin’ It “ A Celebration of Hugh Masekela’s Life & Music (SA), Incognito (UK), Jordan Rakei (NZ), Keenan Ahrends Quintet (SA), Louis Moholo-Moholo presents 5 Blokes 1 Doll (SA), MABUTA (SA), Manny Walters (SA), Masego (USA), Mi Casa (SA), Miguel Atwood-Ferguson: Suite for Ma Dukes (USA), Miles Mosley (USA), Mulatu Astatke (ETH), N8N (BEL), Nduduzo Makhathini: Inner Dimensions Collective (SA/SWISS), Nicholas Payton: Afro-Caribbean Mixtape (USA), Nicky Schrire (SA), R+R=NOW: Robert Glasper, Terrace Martin, Christian Scott, Derrick Hodge, Taylor McFerrin, Justin Tyson (USA), Sekunjalo Edujazz Band (SA), Seu Jorge presents The Life Aquatic / A Tribute to David Bowie (BRA), Sibusiso Mashiloane (SA), Simphiwe Dana (SA), Sisonke Xonti (SA), Tank and the Bangas (USA), The Feya Faku Spirit Unit (SA), The Liberation Project Acoustic Band (SA), The Louiz Banks Quartet (IND), The Settlers High School Band (SA), The Soil (SA), The Surge (South Africa/Russia/Slovakia/Morocco/USA/Kyrgyzstan), The Vijay Iyer Sextet (USA) and Trombone Shorty (USA).
* For more information, visit www.capetownjazzfest.com.