BY BILLY SUTER
IF YOU are a lover of jazz, note that two varied performances are to be enjoyed in Durban this week, starting with an appearance tonight (Wednesday, February 6) by Soweto Exchange, a group led by American saxophonist Ernest Dawkins.
The University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Jazz and Popular music is presenting the entertainment, billed as a Sonic Jazz Hip-Hop Experience. This collaboration of musicians from Englewood Chicago who will be accompanied by some of South Africa’s finest musicians.
“Distinguished saxophonist and cultural stalwart Ernest Dawkins, and a selection of colourful artists, will be creating and performing original music together, that promises to be genre defying, and familiarly jazzy all at once. I is a live coming together of beats, bop and booming vibes; inspired by the beloved Soweto,” says a spokesman.
The ensemble will include pianist Alexis Lombre and drummer Jeremiah Collier, both from Chicago, and trumpeter Thabo Sikhakhane, from KwaZulu-Natak.
It is scheduled to be presented from 6pm at The Centre for Jazz and Popular Music on the second level of the university’s Shepstone Building on the Howard College campus.
Doors open at 5.30pm and admission is R80 ( R50 for pensioners and R25 for students). Call Thuli at (031) 260 3385 for more details.
Still talking jazz, local singer Chloe Clark is worth checking out at Durban’s Jazzy Rainbow, 93 Smiso Nkwanyana Road, Morningside, from 7pm on Saturday (February 9). She will perform with Nick Pitman on acoustic guitar, Llewelyn Chetty on double bass and Burton Naidoo on piano.
Chloe draws inspiration from many of her favourite artists, among them London Grammar, Diana Krall, Madeleine Peyroux, Kimbra, Billie Holiday and Imogen Heap.
Admission is R100 a head for this event for which admission includes a drink. Bookings can be made by calling (021) 3038398.
This performance by Clark forms part of the Concerts SA Venue Circuit which aims to foster a love and support for live music in our communities, as well as anchor small and medium-sized venues in urban and rural KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and the Western Cape.
Clark is a dynamic, vivacious and undeniably talented songstress who, at the age of 11, formed her first band and has been filling the air with her beautiful music and infectious energy ever since.
She has developed quite a reputation in Durban’s jazz, theatre and corporate entertainment scene, with a string of accomplishments to her name.
Chloe has performed with the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra, appeared as backup vocalist for Ronan Keating, sang on Majozi’s first EP and has shared stages with Gangs of Ballet, Joseph Clark, Arno Carstens and many others.
She made her TV debut in 2014 by making it to the Top 30 on Idols SA, and more recently was part of South Africa’s first season of The Voice South Africa, where she was in the team led by Kahn Morbee of The Parlotones.
Chloe has also performed internationally in Mauritius, Japan, China and India. She studied music at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and completed her honours in Jazz vocals and vocal technique methods in 2016.
In the same year she released her debut album, which gained national attention on local radio stations and television shows.
Last year saw the release of her jazz album, She Encountered Wonderland. The album is currently making waves in jazz communities worldwide.
Still on the music scene, note that the line-up for next week’s Music in the Hills event in Hilton looks like a good one.
The semi-open-mic music club meets fortnightly, on Wednesdays, at The Knoll Historic Guest Farm, Knoll Drive, Hilton. Doors open at 6pm and the music flows from an hour later. Admission is R40 at the door.
The headliner act performing from 9pm at the February 13 event will be singer-songwriter Cheryl Joelson, whose style has been compared with that of Joni Mitchell, Brandi Carlisle, Civil Wars, Cranberries and Taylor Swift.
She started singing and performing from the age of nine and spent several years singing in studio as a session singer.
“Cheryl draws on her life experiences to craft poetry that forms the lyrical basis of her heartfelt and memorable songs. Her style of music can be described as folk/rock with hints of country,” says a spokesman.
The South African duo Connecting Stars was officially launched by Cheryl in 2012, creating her own brand of folk-rock. Since 2013, Connecting Stars has gained success locally as well as abroad.
Cheryl also collaborated with Headliner and Rasadon, the founding members of the multi-Grammy-winning band Arrested Development and they wrote a song together titled A Change is Coming.
Cheryl recently performed with Nibs Van Der Spuy at his album launch, and has also performed with Tresor, Riziky and John Ellis.
Performing from 8pm on January 13 will be The Name On The Drum, an alternative rock, folk-indie band that focuses on playing original music, but also performs a variety of covers.
“Playing as a duo or trio and varying the sound from full electric to simple acoustics, The Name On The Drum uses all the tools at their disposal to create a unique blend of honest, thought provoking song-writing with absorbing musical performances.”
With influences that include, Rise Against, Bob Dylan, Frightened Rabbit and The National, the Hillcrest-based group’s songwriting also creates awareness of current world issues.
When the band was formed in 2011 the plan was to have a different “name on the drum” at each performance, now they simply go by The Name On The Drum or TNOTD. Band members are Ben Bruzas (guitar, vocals), Liam Barnard (bass) and Nat Bruzas (drums, vocals).
The 7pm attraction on February 13 will be Hyde and the Resistance, a Durban rock trio drawing influence from The Black Keys, Arctic Monkeys, Switchfoot, Muse and others. Hyde and the Resistance have played alongside bands such as AKing, Dance You’re on Fire and Squeal.
Visit www.mith.co.za for more details and directions.
Also worth noting is that Durban teens Marianthe Panas and Bernelee Frick, backed by The Shizam band, wilolo present Listen this weekend – an acclaimed show saluting musical theatre hits.
It is headed for Durban’s Rhumbelow Theatre in Cunningham Road, Umbilo, at 8pm on Friday and Saturday (February 8 and 9) and 2pm on Sunday (February 10).
Tickets cost R150 (R130 for pensioners and students with cards) and booking is at Computicket outlets or by calling Roland Stansell at 082 499 8636.
This weekend’s attraction at the Rhumbelow Theatre branch at Tina’s Hotel in Beryldene Road, Kloof, is The Hits, teaming Durban band The Black Lapels with guest guitarist Rusty Red.
The show, which opened in Kloof last weekend, is scheduled for final performances at 8pm on Friday and Saturday (February 8 and 9) and 3pm on Sunday (February 10). It is a retrospective of the body of work created by the ever-evolving Black Lapels.
From 2014 to 2018, the band entertained audiences and wowed critics with its no-fuss performances, and The Hits offers highlights from such successes as the group’s early Johnny Cash tribute show to the celebration of swamp blues and rock ’n’ roll that was the band’s acclaimed Creedence Clearwater Revival show.
Also featured in the show are highlights from the band’s Road to Graceland – A Tribute to Paul Simon show that changed the chemistry between the members of the Black Lapels, reigniting the fire to compose and perform their own works.
Tickets for The Hits cost R150 each (R130 for pensioners and students with cards). Booking is at Computicket outlets or, for large group bookings, via Roland at 082 499 8636.