Events

Hugh Masekela & Wynton Marsalis: How Music Became an Instrument for Change in Mandela’s Fight for Freedom

Hugh Masekela and Wynton Marsalis discuss how music became an instrument for change in Mandela's fight for freedom.


Our channel partners at Revive Music have been sharing some gems from Hugh Masekela ahead of his April 4 and April 5 retrospective at Jazz at Lincoln Center in celebration of his 75th birthday. In the clip below, Hugh and "jazz master/CBS News cultural correspondent Wynton Marsalis... sit down to explore the essential and compelling role music played during the brutal era of apartheid." As Revive writes,

When asked by Marsalis if music can change the minds and hearts of people, Masekela notes with insightful wisdom that South Africa is the “only country historically where music was a major catalyst for it’s freedom.”  Through music, Masekela, together with Miriam Makeba, Vuyisile Mini, and countless others, responded to injustice and inequalities in a way that propelled a nation towards social change and grabbed the world’s attention in unprecedented magnitude.

Masekela recalls when the late Nelson Mandela, during his time of exile in Botswana, sent Masekela a letter on his birthday. “Here is a guy who has been in jail for 20 years but he is writing to me giving me encouragement,” says Masekela. He then took to the piano to write “Bring Him Back Home,” the song that became the anthem for Nelson Mandala’s world tour following his release from prison.

Don't miss out on Hugh Masekela's JALC shows this Friday (4/4) and Saturday (4/5) in NYC. "Each night will offer a fascinating live exploration of American jazz together with Masekela’s rich heritage in Zulu folkloric styles that are masterfully infused with the mbaqanga township dance band music of his homeland."  Grab 25% off tickets with the discount code REVIVE here.

Interview

Angelique Kidjo Writes a Love Letter to 'Mother Nature'

We talk to the Beninese musical icon about assembling her new album on Zoom and the "bigger than COVID-19" threat that lies ahead!

The kind of infectious energy that lives within Angelique Kidjo can't be contained by Zoom. Her zest for life reaches out far beyond any screen, and burns stronger than the fastest internet connection.

"I can't wait until we're in person hugging again," she enthuses soon after joining our Zoom meeting to discuss her latest album Mother Nature. Having been on the receiving end of a hug from the four-time Grammy-winning singer, I know exactly what I'm missing out on. "Me too," I say, as I wrap my arms around my laptop, my face squishing the screen. "No, no," she retorts. "I don't want that. You keep it. I want the real deal," she chuckles, her full-bodied trademark laughter lovingly admonishing me.

The Benin-born musician is preparing to release Mother Nature, a collection of songs reflecting our one Earth, and cementing her status as an African musical icon. Collaborating with the likes of Yemi Alade, Mr Eazi, Burna Boy, Sampa the Great, Shungudzo and more, Kidjo's crossing through time and space, over age and country through Mother Nature's themes and stories. Each track is infused with a vigor that only she possesses — the kind that shares a significant message even as the listener is called to just dance or sing along.

Below, Angelique Kidjo reminisces about making the album, and chats us through her hopes and dreams for it!

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Amapiano Pioneer DJ Stokie Shares His Journey In New Documentary ‘iPiano eSoweto: The DJ Stokie Story’

Pioneering amapiano deejay, Stokie's newly released documentary 'iPiano eSoweto' details his musical journey through his lens and that of friends, peers and fans.