Jazz in the Native Yards in collaboration with Concerts SA presents one of South Africa’s favourite saxophonists McCoy Mrubata, on Sunday, July 29, at Guga S’thebe in Langa from 4pm.
Concerts SA provides opportunities for creative performance interchanges between South African rising stars and those that are established. The aim of this initiative is to develop new audiences and an appreciation for live music in areas located outside central urban areas, as well as showcase young fresh South African talent on new platforms throughout South Africa.
Mrubata at this time is performing with a young band called the Unity Band, which he met a few years ago through the Native Yard Jazz sessions when he performed at Jazz in the Native Yards’s circuit of concerts.
He will perform with Steve De Souza (bass), Lonwabo Mafani (piano), Marco Maritz (trumpet), Lumanyano Mzi (drums), Dylan Fine (guitar), Thandeka Dladla (vocals) and Lalavan Gangen (percussion).
“I fell in love with the Unity Band’s sound, energy and musicality. I was also very impressed with their drummer, Lumanyano’s leadership skills,” says Mrubata.
“I’ll also be in the studio recording with the band (Unity Band), Bongani Sotshononda and Daluxolo Hoho. I’ll also be recording with the legendary Roger Khoza, who will be a very special guest on my forthcoming album and we’ll do one of his compositions.”
“For the Guga S’thebe (gig) in Langa, I plan to please my Cape Town fans by revisiting popular songs like ‘Cape Samba’ and ‘Mr And Mrs Adonis’. I’ll also introduce songs that are going to be on my forthcoming album ‘Brasskap Sessions Volume’,” Mrubata explains.
Now based in Johannesburg, McCoy recently launched his DVD, ‘McCoy Mrubata Live’ at the Market Theatre. In 2016 he was part of a South African Dutch exchange band that performed at the Amersfoort Jazz Festival in the Netherlands. He has also released a CD that was recorded last year in Switzerland called ‘McCoy Mrubata Live at the Bird’s Eye Jazz Club’.
Mrubata grew up in Cape Town’s Langa township surrounded with the sounds of African music: the soulful hymns of the Zion Church, the chants and rhythms of traditional healers and the brassy jive of the Merry Macs band who rehearsed opposite his home. When schooling became impossible in the fiery aftermath of the 1976 uprising, the young Mrubata – then playing flute – studied informally under Langa greats like Madoda Gxabeka, Winston Ngozi, the Ngcukana brothers, Ezra and Duke, Blackie Tempi and Robert Sithole.
In the early 1980s he was played in cover bands like Fever, Touch, Airborne and Vukani. From there he moved to crossover outfit Louis and the Jive. In 1987 McCoy was spotted by bandleader Sipho Hotstix Mabuse, who helped him make Joburg his home.
In 1992 he began touring with Hugh Masekela’s Lerapo, alongside guitarist Lawrence Matshiza and pianist, the late Moses Molelekwa, among others.
* Tickets are R100/R50 or pensioners and students at the door, or via www.quicket.co.za.
For more information, SMS/WhatsApp Luvuyo Kakaza on 060 960 8935.