13 November 2006

Monday's mp3: Remembering Jabu Khanyile & Roots Africa

Two African losses this week remind that grief is relative.

South African singer Jabu Khanyile had legions of fans around the world. He had a following with his band Bayete for a decade or so starting in the mid-1980s, and later embarked on a solo career that saw the release of three albums: The Prince (2000), Umbele (2002) and Wankolota (2003). More recently he performed on the Johannesburg Live 8 concert. But Saturday night he was admitted to a hospital in the South African capitol and he never came out, according to the BBC.

Truth is, I don't have any of Khanyile's albums, and I'm not that familiar with his music. The loss I'm mourning this week is that of my favorite African radio show, Roots Africa. Hosted by Kim and Don Mack on KAOS-fm out of Olympia, Washington, USA, the show was a weekly journey through not only great African music, but also African news and on-the-ground reporting from their sister station in Uganda. After a three-year run, the final Roots Africa show was last Thursday. I miss it already.

Sigh. So for music today, here's a quiet Afro-Indian tune that features Jabu Khanyile on vocals. If anyone has more of his music, I'd love to hear it (I did find two clips at cama.org.za). Just sad that it took his passing to bring him to my attention.

[mp3] Trilok Gurtu with Jabu Khanyile: "Ingoma"
from the album The Beat of Love

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