Shaka Zulu Would Be Thrilled

Ladysmith Black Mambazo -  Ilembe: Honoring Shaka Zulu
Ladysmith Black Mambazo – Ilembe: Honoring Shaka Zulu
Ladysmith Black Mambazo

Ilembe: Honoring Shaka Zulu (Heads Up, 2008)

Renowned South African a cappella  group Ladysmith Black Mambazo  pays tribute to the legendary Shaka Zulu on their latest CD, Ilembe: Honoring Shaka Zulu. Without any instrumental accompaniment, the eight vocalists create a mesmerizing style which marks them as one of South Africa’s most popular and influential acts.  

He was a warrior, an athlete, a singer, a dancer, a visionary, he was so many things,” says Joseph Shabalala, lead singer and founder of Ladysmith Black Mambazo  about Shaka Zulu. “He was a diplomat too. He could talk about differences in a civilized way, but he was also very proud. If you said, ‘No, I’m not going to cooperate,’ then he would say, ‘Alright, let us see who is the boss.’”

Ilembe translates to “The Greatest Warrior.” “There have been so many generations that have come and gone since Shaka was king of the Zulus, but there are still many hearts and minds to be conquered,” says Shabalala. “There are still many people who need to be filled with the spirit of unity and hope that Shaka embodied. We are trying to remind people of the importance of what this man did. That was my purpose, to bring the people back to the roots of their culture.”
 
 Buy Ilembe: Honoring Shaka Zulu.

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Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. He was also the executive producer of the first Latino feature film made in North Carolina titled “Los sueños de Angélica.”.

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