Jimmy Dludlu goes back to his roots

By Drum Digital
12 January 2012

He strides through the halls of the Garden Court Hotel in Sandton as if he owns the place.

Stares follow the man in the sophisticated, expensive- looking cream suit as he makes his way to the reception area carrying a huge black case.

It’s hard to miss Jimmy Dludlu in his trademark stylish glasses and a chic trilby hat. Chilled and well-groomed, you’d swear he’s the kind of guy who could get any girl he wants, but he’s not that kind of person, he says.

The multi award-winning 40-something musician is soft-spoken and admits to being timid at times.

But, he tells us, he’s at his happiest when performing. And it soon becomes clear what his other great source of joy is when we’re joined by Tapiwa, his eldest daughter, who’s come to meet us too.

“My daughter has just arrived from Botswana and she wants what girls like best, money, to go and do what girls do best – shop,” Jimmy says with a laugh.

But his 23-year-old daughter is holding off on her shopping for a while; she’s more interested in what her dad is up to right now.

“My children never get exposed to my work. I made the decision a long time ago to keep them away from my working life,” he says, his tone becoming serious.

Jimmy is so set on keeping his children far from the celebrity life that he does not want to reveal how many children he has or divulge their names.

“Let’s talk about my latest offering – not my kids,” the esteemed jazz muso says in a musical voice as he looks at his daughter, as if to get approval for his statement.

Just what this meaningful look means becomes clear when he tells us that his new musical offering is entitled Tonota, a 15-track album inspired by Tapiwa, who quietly gazes at her father as he talks about the album.

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