PMB’s own sets jazz world on fire

2015-07-02 06:00
Nduduzo Makhathini is the Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz for 2015.
                                                                                                                                                      PHOTO: file

Nduduzo Makhathini is the Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz for 2015. PHOTO: file

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THIS year’s Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz is composer and pianist Nduduzo Makhathini from Pietermaritzburg.

With a pianist for a mother and a guitarist for a father, Makhathini was surrounded by music as a child, from Zulu to church and Indian.

In 2001 he studied music at the Durban Institute of Technology, where he met saxophonist and flautist Zim Ngqawana and self-taught jazz master Bheki Mseleku, whose approach continues to influence him.

“Bheki told me about how it was important to use music to speak to our souls and change the environment, change the people we are and heal others,” said Makhathini, who has released the albums Mother Tongue and Sketches of Tomorrow.

“That became my connection to jazz.”

Makhathini has played with Herbie Tsoaeli, Feya Faku, Carlo Mombelli, Marcus Wyatt, McCoy Mrubata and Concord Nkabinde. He has toured Europe with soul songstress Simphiwe Dana and shared stages with Herbie Hancock and Miriam Makeba at the Avo Session Jazz Festival in Basel in 2006.

“Collaborating with people makes it possible for us to go out there and do what we can,” he says.

In Grahamstown Makhathini will perform as part of In Listening to the Ground with Faku, Ayanda Sikade and Nomagugu Makhathini, Swedish saxophonist Karl-Martin Almqvist and bassist Martin Sjöstedt to pay homage to the musical legends who have built the legacy of South African jazz.

“I am very grateful to the Standard Bank Young Artist Awards for the opportunity they give to artists to share their story.

“For an artist it doesn’t get better than being given a platform to express oneself,” he said.

- Supplied

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