Kunene, Georgiades, Umshika Shika, Della Tamin, LAP (DVD)

altUXOLO (Peace) SESSIONS - LIVE @ THE BASSLINE JOHANNESBURG

feat. Madala Kunene, Della Tamin, Umshika Shika, L.A.P. Greg Georgiades, Ashish Joshi & Bernard Mndaweni 

 

 

 

 

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THE STORY BEHIND THE CONCERT

A few years ago, Madala Kunene, the veteran self-styled King of Zulu Guitar remarked in an interview that he was thinking of becoming a sangoma because music was no longer a viable profession for providing for his family.

For some reason, local traditional healers were very soon up in arms. Even some of MadalaÙs friends felt heÙd gone too far. When I learned about the seriousness of the situation, I packed my DAT machine, some microphones and picked up Mabi Thobejane along with some of his drums, and headed for Durban. Once there, we initiated a series of uxolo (peace) recordings. Music in effect, became a medium for conflict resolution.

It soon became obvious that the Durbanites needed to come to Johannesburg to play for their fans which included new and upcoming musicians from groups like L.A.P. and Kwani Experience along with a younger generation of supporters. However, before this could evolve further, Madala and bafo Bernard Mndaweni had been invited to perform at a small festival at Fort West in the Pretoria area. This was at the behest of oud player and guitarist Greg Hadjiyorki Georgiades. The festival also happened to be the first time that the older musicians had shared the stage with accompaniment from the recently formed L.A.P. (an organic offshoot of Kwani Experience).

Thus when Madala and BernardÙs album Uxolo was finally released and launched in June 2005 it had ceased to be purely a Madala Kunene event, simply because all his musician friends wanted to join him on stage for a memorable night at the re-located Bassline venue in Newtown.


Peace, brotherhood and a lifetime
of plucking strings and chickens

The 21st century has been hard for many live performers. Chiefly because DJing and digitally generated music leave little room for traditional musicians to earn a living playing live. This, among other things, led to arguments and discontent amongst several artists in Kwa-Zulu Natal. To a point when in 2004, I decided to pack my car with a portable DAT recorder (plus a couple of microphones) and head off to seek peace between the bickering factions by using music as a medium for negotiation.

Uxolo is the result of this mission. It soon became obvious that the Durbanites needed to come to Johannesburg to play for their fans which included new and upcoming musicians from groups like L.A.P. and Kwani Experience along with a younger generation of supporters. However, before this could evolve further, Madala and bafo Bernard Mndaweni had been invited to perform at a small festival at Fort West in the Pretoria area. This was at the behest of oud player and guitarist Greg Hadjiyorki Georgiades. The festival also happened to be the first time that the older musicians had shared the stage with accompaniment from the recently formed L.A.P. (an organic offshoot of Kwani Experience).

Thus when Madala and BernardÙs album Uxolo was finally released and launched in June 2005 it had ceased to be purely a Madala Kunene event, simply because all his musician friends wanted to join him on stage for a memorable night at the re-located Bassline venue in Newtown.

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