S’fisokuhle Xulu “An African Jazz Tribute”

Seen on March 15, 2016 @ Beethoven Room, Grahamstown

Relaxing to jazzy tunes after long day of work is exactly my cup of tea. So anticipation rosen when I could invite a friend to join me for some smooth tunes.

The staging of S’fisokuhle Xulu’s “The African Jazz Tribute” was just the right occasion. A classical  trained male singer with a broad range of vocal possibilities, experimenting with jazz singing and scatting and an interest in the role of protest songs should make for an interesting night out.

Before Xulu appeared on stage Lonwabo Diba (piano), Clifton Williams (bass) and Siya Skosana (drums) set the scene for some nice jazz, very chilled, with accurate understanding of their instruments, letting of some steam but gently stirring to wet the appetite for more. Xulu’s joie de vivre, shouts of hey, fiddling with light, every song has a different dance move attitude and the strength he lends the songs with his voice are incredibly entertaining. He might be forgiven for needing to run twice to the toilet, but his rendition and tribute to African ladies of jazz and the songs that were born out of the struggle were highly entertaining to say the least. His own smile caused many more in the room. But his quest to take on well beloved tunes and pay a unique tribute to each and all of them made it a musical adventure to cherish.

Fantastic to see a band of young musicians finding their voice in the tradition and transmitting some of the original vibes that went with the songs. Do you feel like dancing? Ah this was beautiful!