Recording the History, Moments and Memories of South African Music
Publication Year: 2010
Published by: African Books Collective
Acronyms & Abbreviations
Beyond Memory is a collection of Max Mojapelo’s diaries, written in a very personalised style. Critical details lie in the deep meanders of the history, moments, and memories that Mojapelo has about the world of music in South Africa. Mojapelo’s style blurs...
South Africa possesses one of the richest popular music traditions in the world, surpassed in its variety and inventiveness perhaps only by the United States. From marabi to mbaqanga, from boeremusiek to bubblegum, from kwela to kwaito: as varied as are the many...
The story you are about to read is based on my experiences before, during and after my career as a deejay at the SABC. At the end of the book you will have gained insight into the music industry in South Africa and its connections beyond. You’ll also have an idea...
1. Soweto Soul Music
Whenever I hear Wilson Pickett’s 1965 hit In The Midnight Hour or Blood, Sweat and Tears’ 1969 chartbuster And When I Die, I remember the morning I heard an instrumental tune from the Kau homestead, a stone’s throw away from my home...
2. Alex Soul Menu and Beyond
Spread out north of the city of Johannesburg is one of the oldest and funkiest townships in the country – Alexandra. History has it that an Afrikaner farmer, Mr S. Papenfus once bought a number of farms around the modern day township...
3. Quick Quick
Towards the late 1950s a new music genre that fused various township music styles emerged – mbaqanga. This genre was preceded by marabi, tshabatshaba and kwela. The kwela era had notably been dominated by hornmen like Spokes Mashiane...
4. The Cape Connection
Down in Cape Town Richard Jon Smith cooked a storm with his monster hits Candle Light and That’s Why I Love You. The latter was produced by Robert J Lange and the former by Clive Calder, owner of Zomba Productions. His career flourished...
5. Into the Vibrant Eighties
The eighties were without doubt the most vibrant years of my life in the South African music and media industry. That was when I joined the SABC and was privileged to interact with the who’s who of the music industry, from managers to promoters, from talent scouts...
6. Ladies of Song
As a motherland, Africa has a number of female singers named after her in the South African music industry – Mama Africa, Lady Africa, Princess Of Africa and so on. At the end of this chapter we will know more about them. The “First Lady Of Song”, Dolly Rathebe inspired so many...
7. In Twos and Threes
As already mentioned, music trends in the US influenced the South African music industry. The success of female groups like trios and quartets in America gave rise to the emergence of such groups locally. These US success stories were groups...
8. When Two Cultures Kiss
From as far back as the 1950s black was black and white was white in the music industry of South Africa, just as in our daily lives. Besides the cultural differences, government legislation made the meeting of the two very difficult, if not impossible...
9. The Era of the Steam Train
What Harari was to the seventies, Stimela was to the eighties. Harari was the university of the seventies and Stimela became the institution of the eighties. The leader of Stimela, Raymond Chikapa Phiri, was born on...
10. Ska Flowers
Ska is the original form of Jamaican reggae music. This form of music developed through the years to become a force in the international music industry. Reggae was mainly protest music against social injustices. Some of the exponents of this genre are musicians...
11. New School
Towards the end of the eighties young musicians ushered in a new era. These youngsters started experimenting on new sounds, aligning themselves with international trends, but recognising local styles as well. This style was mainly influenced...
12. Fine Male Voices
One of the finest male voices of the eighties belonged to Bibi Msomi the son of Noshukela and Mantombi Msomi. From a young age Bibi was inspired by vocalists like “Mama Africa”, Miriam Makeba. He released his maxi single You Are The Flower/Frustrated Mind (Wea, 1985) co-written with Almon...
13. Contemporary African Music
Long before the national agenda of the African Renaissance, some musicians had already started the journey to self-rediscovery. The champions of this movement include a man who knighted himself “Sir Alton” – Dumisani Alton Mashaba. This giant was born on 24 December 1954, the seventh...
14. Joy or Jazz
The late 1980s saw the emergence of a new regiment of young musicians who blended traditional South African rhythms with elements of traditional jazz to create a uniquely South African sound. Some of them had been session musicians who have mastered their...
15. Exile Blues
In the early fifties Alf Herbert launched the most revolutionary concept to ever hit the local music industry – African Jazz Revue And Variety Show. It gave local stars a taste of broader exposure, recognition and professionalism preparing them for bigger challenges to come. Thereafter followed...
16. Trading in Tradition
Western music instruments like the guitar and the accordion found their way into South African black traditional music to produce what became known as commercial traditional music. This sound was dominated by isiZulu musicians...
17. Voice Power
Long before the introduction of instruments into music the voice has always been the natural tool of expression. Even in today’s world of technological sophistication many people are still attracted to choral music. Many producers of commercial recordings now and then include the acappella...
18. Welcome Madiba
On 2 February 1990 when President Frederick Willem de Klerk made the most revolutionary statement of his career, he also inspired composers and producers. He announced in parliament that he would unban the ANC, SACP, PAC , AZAPO and thirty other political organisations...
19. Praising and Praying
My early memories of South African gospel music date back to the late sixties when I went to Matladi High School in Zebediela for my secondary school education. There were various quartets inspired by The King’s Messengers Quartet, the best at the time...
Page Count: 380
Publication Year: 2010
OCLC Number: 768119676
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