“It's Friday (Hey), And I'm ready to swing, pick up my girls
And hit the party scene, Tonight, oh, it's alright, mhm
So get up and let this funky mellow groove get you in the mood
'Cause you know it's alright, yeah’’
This funky Aaliyah classic jam always gets us in the mood, unfortunately, it’not alright, Earth is so ghetto right now. 2020.2 just won’t let us be great. But we keep it moving and music (followed closely by chocolate) can make it all go away (if only for a while). We love, move and groove to R&B here (90s R&B and Hip Hop to be precise), but we speak jazz too.
If there is one thing being stuck at home has done, is help us rediscover and celebrate our very own talent.
Now we can’t mention South African jazz vocalists and not salute top-tier jazz musos such as the late Mirriam Makeba, Dorothy Masuka, Sibongile Khumalo, Gloria Bossman, Tu Nokwe, Judith Sephuma (although she’s hopped on over to gospel—we will never forget her timeless debut, A Cry, A smile, And Dance), Nomfundo Xaluva, Melanie Scholtz, and many more.
This current crop of South African jazz instrumentalists and vocalists—call it “new wave jazz”—are blending genres and pushing the sound forward.
Here are five SA women in jazz you need to hear, know and celebrate:
Tribute ‘’Birdie’’ Mboweni