Ladysmith Black Mambazo share Grammy with Gipsy Kings

2014-01-27 09:02

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Los Angeles – Ladysmith Black Mambazo and flamenco fusionists, the Gipsy Kings – both long-time favourites at the Grammys – have shared the award for the best world music album.

The Gipsy Kings were nominated for a record sixth time for the Grammy for best world music album but won the award for the first time with Savor Flamenco.

The album was the first that was written and produced by the Gipsy Kings, who come from southern France but trace their roots mostly to Spanish Roma culture.

Ladysmith Black Mambazo, whose rhythmic a cappella performances preserve the musical traditions of South Africa’s mine workers, shared the Grammy for their live album, Singing for Peace Around the World.

They dedicated the work to Nelson Mandela and promised to donate proceeds of the album bought on the band’s website to the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund.

The Grammy was the fourth won by Ladysmith Black Mambazo on the band’s own.

The choir was thrust before a global audience in 1986 when it collaborated on Paul Simon’s groundbreaking Grammy-winning album, Graceland, and joined the US songwriter’s ensuing tour.

The other Grammy nominees for best world music album were No Place for My Dream by Femi Kuti, the Nigerian star and son of Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti, and The Living Room Sessions Part Two by Indian-born sitarist Ravi Shankar, who recorded the album at his California home at the age of 91, a year before his death in 2012.

If Shankar had won, it would have been an unprecedented third Grammy for best world music album.

Shankar won the Grammy posthumously last year for The Living Room Sessions Part One.

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