Ladysmith Black Mambazo
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Headed by charismatic founder/composer Joseph Shabalala, Ladysmith Black Mambazo is Africa's number one selling recording group. The name comes from the city where the group comes from, Ladysmiththe black ox and mambazo, the Zulu word for ax.
With nearly 40 releases since their first recording in 1962, Mambazo's captivating Zulu harmonies are a proud, strong homage to the jubilance, power and beauty of indigenous music Joseph Shabalala is a man that carries on developing his dreams. He has enlisted the talents of four of his sons the next Mambazo generation. Josephs ambition is now to establish the first Academy for the teaching and preservation of indigenous South African music and culture in South Africa.
Since the cooperation on the Graceland album - more than 14 million copies sold - with Paul Simon and their hit title "Homeless," Mambazo have been known all over the world. The group has recorded over forty albums, selling over six million records at home and abroad, establishing them as the number one record selling group from Africa.
Their first album release for the United States, Shaka Zulu,
won a Grammy Award in 1987. Since then they have been nominated for a Grammy
Award six additional times, including a nomination in 2001 for the album Live
From Royal Albert Hall.
The music sung by Ladysmith Black Mambazo is called isicathamiya. In the mines of South Africa, black workers would entertain themselves after a six-day week by singing songs into the night, and choreographing dance steps on "tip toe" so as not to disturb the camp security guards. When the miners returned to the homelands, the tradition returned with them. Ladysmith Black Mambazo is by far the most famous of the South African isicathamiya groups.
While the group's music is clearly rooted in African musical
traditions, the message speaks to all people whose ears and hearts are open,
says Shabalala, a native of South Africa?s Zulu people who converted to
Christianity around the time of his musical awakening in the late 1950s and
early ?60s. To this day he is an active minister in a township outside of
Durban, where he gives sermons in Zulu. ?Without hearing the lyrics, this
music gets into the blood, because it comes from the blood,? he says. ?It
invokes enthusiasm and excitement, regardless of what you follow spiritually.?
Joseph Shabalala -lead vocals
Albert Mazibuko - vocals
Sibongiseni Shabalala - vocals
Thamsanqa Shabalala - vocals
Thulani Shabalala - vocals
Msizi Shabalala - vocals
Jockey Shabalala - vocals
Abednego Mazibuko - vocals
Russel Mthembu - vocals
Jabulani Dubazana - vocals
Official Web Site: www.mambazo.com
Star and the Wiseman
Live From Royal Albert Hall (2001)
Raise Your Spirit Higher -Wenyukela (Heads Up, 2003)
No Boundaries (Heads Up, 2005)
Ladysmith Black Mambazo - In Harmony: Live at the Royal Albert Hall (Shanachie, 1999)
Ladysmith Black Mambazo - On Tip Toe (New Video Group, 2004)
Live at Montreux (Eagle Rock Entertainment, 2005)
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