Abafazi bashukumisa umzansi - Abafazi bashukumisa umzansi

2006-03-29 20:21

Yvonne Chaka Chaka's opening song "bombani" leads us swaying into an album that contains a significant number of radio if not national favorites that will make it hugely popular and a collectors item.

Some would say there are gaps in the lineup - that, say Brenda Fassie is missing - but as a representation of tradition-flavoured standards, it's really broad enough.

Memorable tracks include Gloria Bosman's "kgomotso tsa ntate", Mariam Makeba's "back of the moon" which invokes the glamour and grit of the 50's and Tu Nokwe's "inyakanyaka" will stir even the stuffed shirts to jigga a jigga with the rest of us.

Letta Mbuli's well known "not yet uhuru" resonates poignantly as we observe 16 Days of activism in the "Unite against violence against women and children" campaign.

While Thandiswa's "zabalazza" provides a contemporary jazzy flavour mixed with a strong message reminiscent of smoky Jazz bars in New York.

Bottom line: it's an engaging album that blends the sounds of the xylophone, drum, penny whistle, and sax to keep your feet tapping. Get it if you love African Folk and Jazz and want to add an album of female stars to your collection, as an introduction to African Jazz/Folk crossover sounds, or if you want to impress foreign friends and relatives.

- Soraya Abdulatief

Respected female vocalists, affirming messages, and enough variation in vocal style and music to starve off the boredom caused by occasional repetitive lyrics and refrains.

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