Ladysmith Black Mambazo: Bringing Harmonies

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Thursday March 08, 2018

From The Berkshire Eagle

Ladysmith Black Mambazo Brings Timeless Harmonies to Pittsfield
By: Benjamin Cassidy

The South African isicathamiya ensemble, which accompanied Mandela to his 1993 Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, was world-renowned for its harmonies by that point, and they continue to be a musical and cultural force today. The group’s repertoire melds the tradition of Zulu harmony, singing songs born in the mines during the apartheid era, with hints of gospel. In January, the a cappella virtuosos picked up their fifth Grammy award, winning best world music album for “Shaka Zulu Revisited: 30th Anniversary Celebration.”

Mazibuko said it’s “huge” that a South African group is touring and singing around the world, particularly one that hasn’t deviated from its roots.

“We are, maybe I could say, the only group that tries to keep the culture and stay in our tradition as much as we [can],” Mazibuko. “Because I’ve seen all the groups that are around the world, [and] when they are doing their music, sometimes they are influenced by watching what is happening around [them]. … I believe Ladysmith Black Mambazo is a group that I can say, we are keeping the culture.”

Read more from The Berkshire Eagle here