Mzansi-US female jazz band stoles show

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Colleta Dewa

Johannesburg - An all-female jazz band comprising of local and American stars captivated jazz lovers at the 2019 Standard Bank Joy of Jazz last Saturday as the festival was coming to an end.

The biggest jazz event in Africa started last Thursday at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

Known as Jazz Unity, the band comprised of Zoe Modiga, Tebza Sedumedi (bass), Nomfundo Xaluva (piano), Lafrae Sci (drums) and Lakecia Benjamin (saxophone) both from USA.

The five women thrilled the audience by making sure that there was never a dull moment during their set.

Benjamin, who played saxophone, dazzled jazz lovers and said she has learnt a lot from South African musicians.

"I am so happy to be home. Since I have been here I have had the best food and met the most soulful and caring for people. Thank you for the support. I wish I could come back."

The group also paid tribute to the late music legends like Miriam Makeba and Mankunku Ngozi.

Speaking to journalists after the performance,  Modiga who plays lead guitar said the collaboration between American and South African women was made possible by American Embassy and Joy of Jazz.

“It was a heartfelt experience for me and it came at a right time when SA women are dealing with a lot of challenges. What is happening seem to explain the narrative that women are not taken serious in the society. The collaboration of African and American women tackled the issue of identity. We know that black females are the last in the food chain, but we proved that we exist and we can deliver.”

The other group member Xaluva added that the coming together of women for the great cause meant power.

“We are more than newspaper headlines, we are power and we proving that we are more that."

Other people who had great performances included Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Manu Katche, RJ Benjamin, Rahsaan Patterson, among others. 

 

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