Mrwebi, Gwigwi - Mbaqanga Songs vinyl lp (due to size and weight, this price for the USA only. Outside of the USA, the price will be adjusted as needed)

The reissue of an unbelievably rare, early, African jazz release in the UK that predates any of the recordings by Chris McGregor's Blue Notes, even though most of the musicians of that band appear on this. Essential for fans of the Kwela sound! Where did the great music of the Brotherhood come from? Here you can hear some clues. Essential!! "Gwigwi Mrwebi travelled to London from Johannesburg in 1960, to appear in the musical King Kong - alongside the likes of Dorothy Masuka, featured on London 4. (Back home earlier that year he'd recorded with Hugh Masekela and Kippie Moeketsi in the Jazz Dazzlers; and earlier he'd played with the Jazz Maniacs and the Harlem Swingsters.) The Blue Notes came after him in 1965, and two years later Chris McGregor, Dudu Pukwana and Ronnie Beer joined Gwigwi for this session at Dennis Duerden's Transcription centre in Covent Garden, together with Jamaican bassist Coleridge Goode (from Joe Harriott's group), and on drums the Welshman Laurie Allan (a Blue Notes regular, who played with Gong in the seventies). Mbaqanga Songs is a reissue of the LP which resulted (originally entitled Kwela by Gwigwi's Band, and impossible to find pretty much ever since). Sixteen short, exhilarating jazz tracks in the dance style then captivating South Africa (kwela means 'get moving' in Xhosa), bursting with beautiful melodies. Carefully remastered at Abbey Road; with poignant new sleevenotes by Steve Beresford." "What I am sure of is that 77 Records Afro 101 was called Kwela by Gwigwi's Band and it featured Gwigwi Mrwebi and Dudu Pukwana on alto saxophones, Ronnie Beer on tenor saxophone, Chris McGregor on piano, Coleridge Goode on bass and Laurie Allan on drums. Dudu and Chris moved to London in 1965 and I am guessing that this LP was made soon after that. Each piece they play is either by Mrwebi or Pukwana and one or other altoist solos on every tune, sometimes with a piano solo too. They're very short versions, as though recorded for a series of 7-inch singles, and the tunes are wonderful, all in the Kwela dance style that was then captivating South Africa. The terseness of the treatment is in nice contrast to the generosity of the melodies. Some of Dudu's tunes that first appeared on this album were recycled later when McGregor formed the big band The Brotherhood of Breath, but others never seemed to get played again. I arranged the opener, Dudu's "Good News", for our South African tribute band The Dedication Orchestra..."-Steve Beresford
  • LabelHonest Jon's
  • UPC880918075020
Your Price $20.00

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