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Tuesday, August 15, 2017


(Sibusiso Mash Mashiloane. Pic by Black Lotus Photography)

Pianist and composer Sibusiso Mash Mashiloane is gearing up to release his second album Rotha – A Tribute to Mama. This release on August 27 also marks the start of his launch tour. He will release the album with a special launch performance at SABC M1 Studio’s in Durban.

The album is inherently a tribute to Mashiloane’s cherished and influential figures, experiences and memories, but most importantly a tribute to his mother Rotha who passed on exactly a year ago on August 27, 2016, while he was in studio to record Rotha. Rotha is an acoustic traditional jazz album that radiates South African heritage sounds and universal jazz influences. He describes this album as mostly sharing Coltrane’s harmonic movements with African influences within the melody and most notably references to South African tribal and spiritual sounds.

This is a very special album for me simply, because it has my first compositions that I composed in 2003 when I first enrolled at the Natal Tech. Most of the songs in this album are more than 10 years old. The arrangements, rhythms, melodies and harmonic structures are therefore a reflection of my studying years at both Natal Tech and UKZN. These are the songs I would play with my Unlocked Keys Band and the audiences loved them …. Recording the album was not an easy task for me, I wanted to hear the music as I composed it many years ago, which is somehow not fair for the influences and the maturity I have accumulated. The good part is that 90% of the musicians that feature on the record, are musicians that I used to play the music with,” says Mashiloane.

The band that was mostly involved in the recording and will also be playing live at the launch alongside Mash on keys consists of the most talented players from both Durban and other parts of the country: Paki Peleole on drums, Sakhile Simani on trumpet, Sisonke Xonti on tenor saxophone and Thembinkosi Mavimbelo on bass guitar. On vocals Zoetheseed, Nozuko Tete, Xolisa Dlamini and Keorapetse Kolwane will feature on the various songs Mash and his band will bring.

The artist Sibusiso “Mash” Mashiloane is one with abundance of faith on his own talent that his reign of creativity rumbles with potential for a legendary status and the quality that the music forecasts for the near future speaks for itself. There is a flood of artistic exploration in this current project and in future coming projects. Mash is a prolific artist whose academic credentials speak volume on the kind of discipline and passion he has for music. After getting his master’s degree in Jazz Performance and graduating Cum Laude from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, he is now on his way to becoming an integral part of the South African and international jazz scene.

His debut album Amanz’ Olwandle (released in December 2016) was the first glimpse of a very promising musical journey through jazz, an accrual and reflection of every music experience he has accumulated throughout his upbringing and music career. With his catchy, self-written compositions that always aim to blur the line between jazz and other genres, Mash is quick in winning the hearts and minds of a large public. He and his band played not only the main stages of the KZN circuit, but also many major jazz festivals and his live performances have taken him as far as USA. As a pianist, he appeared with many different groups around the world and was initiating projects of his own. After getting his Master’s degree in Jazz Performance and graduating Cum Laude from UKZN, his aim is now to become an integral part of the South African and international jazz scene.

His performances are inspired by funk, hip hop, gospel and traditional music from South Africa, attracting music fans of all genres as well as straight ahead jazz aficionados. Mash has also built a career in South Africa as a musical director. At the same time, he has explored in depth the repertoire of composers such as Bheki Mseleku, Kenny Kirkland, Joey Calderazzo, McCoy Tyner, John Coltrane, Wynton Kelly, Abdullah Ibrahim, Themba Mkhize, Andile Yenana, Zim Ngqawana, Moses Molelekwa and Bud Powell.

Not only is Mash a great artist in this very vibrant time in South African jazz music, he also is a teacher with a focused goal to help grow talent form a firm foundation of African Roots. He lectures at UKZN and Durban Music School. His focus is to teach and organize live music performances with his students focusing on South African composers and in line with this development Mashiloane is currently busy with his PHD focusing on South African music.

The launch of Rotha – A Tribute to Mama, will take place on August 27 at 16h00 at SABC M1 Studios, 100 KE Masinga Road in Durban. Tickets R150 including CD and snacks only available on and at Pick ‘n Pay. ONLY presales, no tickets at the door. 

After the launch the audience is invited to remain for the live Ukhozi FM Jazz Broadcast with Mandla Mdletshe, featuring Sibu Mashiloane, Xolisa Dlamini, Zoetheseed, Keorapetse Kolwane & Nina Mkhize.