“I see myself as a link between the past and the future. I passionately believe in training the youth in the finer details of the craft. My aim is to keep the music alive. As long as I nurture the music by grooming youngsters I believe my mission will be accomplished.” – Sipho Mabuse

In June 1966 a fourteen-year-old schoolboy and two classmates launched their music careers. The event was a bursary fundraising performance and the place was Orlando West High School in Soweto. Fifty years later Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse has been celebrating his golden jubilee with a remarkable sense of achievement and contentment. And as the curtain falls on 2016, he looks back with joy and gratitude for the support he has enjoyed from South Africa and the world. “Thank you everyone,” he says. “It has been a remarkable year with some amazing shows and events – all made amazing by the fans in attendance.”

The celebrations started in April with a pop up performance in Cape Town alongside poet Siphokazi Jonas. Then followed shows in Botswana and Swaziland with the likes of Johnny Clegg. In September he was celebrated as the keynote speaker at Music Exchange #MEX16. His topic? Triumphs and Tragedies Celebrating Fifty Years in the SA Music Industry. He also performed at the annual music indaba, Moshito and the Standard Bank International Joy of Jazz. He was guest of honour at the More Jazz series in Maputo, Mozambique.

The multi-instrumentalist’s five decades in the industry were defined by unwavering commitment and pioneering contribution to South African music. Among his numerous milestones he lists producing Miriam Makeba’s platinum-achieving album, Welela (1989) as well as performing alongside Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin and Baaba Maal at the 46664 concert for Nelson Mandela in New York.

Born Sipho Cecil Peter Mabuse on 2 November 1951 in Masakeng (Shantytown), Orlando West, he has since distinguished himself as a versatile musician and multi-instrumentalist who had played anything from township disco to jazz. He pioneered the Afro funk and Soweto soul era in the late 1960s and spearheaded the golden decade of township pop in the 1980s.

The son of a coal merchant who played harmonica, his grandfather and uncles were musical. He was taught to play drums by Baba Manuel, a neighbour and a traditional healer. His greatest influences were Early Mabuza, David Ramogase, Gordon Mfandu and Gerald Khoza of the Flaming Souls – all of them top drummers in South African jazz. “One of my fondest memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life was when I was 14 and Early Mabuza walked into the studio and asked to sit on my drum kit to practise,” he recalled. Mabuse was playing drums as a member of his school’s cadet band when he was spotted by fellow pupil, Selby Ntuli.

Together with another schoolmate and bass player, Alec ‘Om’ Khaoli, they formed The Beaters. Guitarist and keyboard player, Ntuli was the bandleader until his untimely death in 1978. Their creative and original music became the soundtrack of the black consciousness movement. It was called Soweto soul. “There was a void our music filled,” he observes. “It served a much higher purpose, which was to mentally emancipate black people from a feeling of passive helplessness into a world of strength through song.”

“We were all the sons and daughters of Africa, working on our strengths to take what we did to another level. As scary as those dark days were, through the 1970s, I remember them oddly fondly,” he recalls. The Beaters listened to a wide variety of styles – which included The Manhattan Brothers, Miriam Makeba, The Ink Spots and foreign artists such as Nat ‘King’ Cole, Elvis Presley, Otis Redding and Jimi Hendrix.

Mabuse also listened to American jazz drummers Elvin Jones and Billy Cobham. The Beaters’ first album, Soul-A-Go-Go was released in 1969, a year after the band’s formation. Bacon and Eggs (1970) and Mumsy Hips (1971) followed later. In 1975 Mabuse and Khaoli joined pianist Pat Matshikiza and the great Kippie Moeketsi in a studio as members of the rhythm section for a recording of Tshona, an album that became one of the greatest classics of South African jazz.

“As a young musician I had a high regard for Bra Kippie because he was an incredibly talented musician who has raised the profile of South African jazz. We met at a time when he was a very angry and disgruntled musician who felt that his talents had gone unappreciated by South African society. During the Tshona sessions his mastery of the alto sax was clear and we decided to feature him on our next album, Rufaro (1978).”

In 1976 they toured Rhodesia (Zimbabwe). What was intended as a three-week visit became a hugely successful three-month tour. On their return they released an album Harari, as a tribute to the people of the township of the same name outside Salisbury, the capital. The title track became a massive hit and inspired the name change to Harari. The band attracted some of the country’s hottest guitarists, Funky Masike Mohapi, Monty ‘Saitana’ Ndimande, Robert ‘Doc’ Mthalane, Condry Ziqubu and Zimbabwean-born Louis Mhlanga.

Its other exceptional talents were Thelma ‘Neo’ Segona (keyboards), Oupa Segoai (percussion), Lionel Petersen (vocals), Charlie Ndlovu (keyboards), Sello Chico Twala (keyboards), Branny Ledwaba (percussion) and multi-instrumentalist Eddie Manda. Seasoned jazzmen like Kippie Moeketsi, Themba Mokoena, Barney Rachabane, Dennis Mpale and Stompie Manana also featured on Harari albums. In 1978 Hugh Masekela invited Harari to the US. But Selby Ntuli’s death robbed them of the opportunity to do so.

Mabuse effectively became the band’s new leader. Highlights of those years included supporting and backing Percy Sledge, Timmy Thomas, Brook Benton and Wilson Pickett during their South African tours. They were all impressed by Harari’s incredible musicianship. In 1979 they became the first black pop group to appear on SABC TV. The following year they became the first black group to headline their own show at the Colosseum, a landmark music venue in Johannesburg.

In the same year they were featured in a BBC documentary. They were the aristocrats of South African pop. Their 1980 album, Heatwave, was released in the US by A&M Records. Their 1982 single, Party, entered the American Disco Hot 100 charts. At the pinnacle of their career in 1982, Harari disbanded – its members pursuing solo careers or forming new bands. Mabuse retained the name and used it to nurture young talent. Future stars like Sello ‘Chico’ Twala, Danny ‘Kamazu’ Malewa and Ashante became part of the new look, youthful Harari. His other project at the time was the Soweto Soul Orchestra, which involved forty musicians who recorded symphonic music – something which was unheard of among black artists.

In 1983 he launched a groundbreaking solo career as Sipho ‘Hotstix’ Mabuse – the nickname he was given by fellow musician Condry Ziqubu because of his hot style of drumming. His debut album, Rise (1983) sold an incredible 132 000 copies. “The break-up of Harari on the threshold of an international breakthrough was the most heartbreaking experience for me, second to Selby’s passing. I needed an emotional lift. Rise became that lift,” he explains.

Its successor, Burn Out (1984) made recording history with half a million units and perched on top of the charts of every radio station for weeks. It was a crossover hit that captured every South African across the racial and cultural spectrum. It changed the face and shape of Afro pop and township jive like no other song or artist in local pop history. Burn Out also became an international multi-platinum phenomenon. The artist signed a R1.5 million deal with Virgin Records to have the album released in the UK. It was also released in Germany, Japan and the United States.

The CBS deal in the States placed him in an elite stable of international superstars like Michael Jackson and the Rolling Stones. The success of Burn Out made him one of the most sought after performers at concerts and festivals in Europe. His next album, Afrodizzia (1986) underscored his newfound status as a world class performer with global acclaim. Produced by Virgin Records, it reached platinum status within three weeks of its release. The album’s single, Shikisha, became such a monster hit the album was sold as Shikisha for the European market. It is a soundtrack on Throw Momma from the Train (1987) the American action comedy film starring Danny De Vito, Billy Crystal and saxophonist Branford Marsalis.

Chant of the Marching (1989) features Miriam Makeba on Mama and its songs Khulula uMandela (Free Mandela), Refugee and Chant of the Marching were banned from the SABC airwaves presumably because of their anti-apartheid content. He says the authorities never told him why the songs were banned. What About Tomorrow (1991) and Township Child (1996) have wonderful dance tracks and beautiful songs with socially conscious lyrics. Tracks like Rumba Mama, Thaba Bosiu, Township Child and Nelson Mandela are classic examples.

He wrote the latter after he was commissioned by the African National Congress to compose a song for the historic 1994 elections. An artist of many parts, Mabuse has also produced albums for other top South African artists including Hugh Masekela, Miriam Makeba, Ray Phiri and Sibongile Khumalo. Goodbye Poverty, the song he co-wrote with Selby Ntuli and Alec Khaoli, appears in Makeba’s Country Girl album. In the early 1990s he made his mark in radio broadcasting when he presented Radio 702’s Guinness Jazz programme and the Benson & Hedges Jazz programme on Metro FM.

In the mid-1990s he took over Kippies as the popular jazz venue’s manager. During his tenure he hosted international superstars like Stevie Wonder, Jonathan Butler, Al Jarreau and Thelonius Monk Jr. In 1998 he showcased local talent as presenter of Thula Mabota, an SABC2 music programme. In 2011 he celebrated his 60th birthday in style when he finally obtained his matric certificate – having attained pop stardom as a schoolboy, making it impossible for him to finish his studies.
“There are so many more wonderful stories, through my 50-year-long pilgrimage, that have made this extraordinary ride truly extraordinary,” Mabuse says. At 65 he is convinced that he still has a critical role to play in the South African music scene. “I’m not about to stop walking on my road. I’m a voice in a space that speaks truth to power,” he concludes. One thing is for sure. Mabuse has already created an outstanding legacy in South African music.

Discography (selected pics )

• Harari – Greatest Hits: Volume 1 & 2 (Gallo, 1991/1998). This African Classics collection consists of some of Harari’s best music from the earlier period including Harari, Give, Kalahari Rock, Party and Soul Fire.
• The Best of Sipho Mabuse (Gallo, 2000). Fifteen of Hotstix’s greatest hits of his solo years including Burn Out, Shikisha, Chant Of The Marching, Jive Soweto, Mama, Rumba Mama and more.


[tags, Sipho Mabuse ,Music Exchange ,Soweto ,Gallo Records ]

Joost was just too good -R.I.P

THE doyen of rugby broadcasting, Bill McLaren, remarked in his book “Rugby’s Great Heroes”, that the “Springboks had no right to be playing an outrageously gifted flank at scrumhalf.”

McLaren indeed summed up Joost. It is fact that the Springbok legend was not refined in the artistry of scrumhalf play but he was among the first players that a coach would pick purely because of his indomitable spirit, his sheer competiveness and utter refusal to lose.

In short, Joost was not a skilled scrumhalf – his pass was often suspect and his box kicking was poor, and coaches knew that, but they always picked him because he had an X factor for scoring and creating tries and a sheer refusal to lose that the rest of the team fed off.

The more a situation in a game deteriorated, the harder Joost played. He just would not give up.

I recall asking him at a press conference in 2003 following the Springboks’ defeat to England in a key Rugby World Cup Pool game if the Boks’ World Cup campaign had been won and lost (the defeat set them up for a quarter-final against New Zealand, and the Springbok team quite frankly was one of the poorest in decades).

He leaned up out of his chair and said with clinched fists said: “It is not a case of IF we beat New Zealand but WHEN we win the World Cup!”

And I knew he was not bull-dusting given his blazing eyes and clear restraint to not jump over the top table and punch my lights out. He would dearly have loved to…

Those eyes … women were mesmerised by them, rugby players feared them.

I was on tour in New in Zealand as a journalist in 1996 when Joost was being discussed on a TV show. One pundit said he had “gunslinger eyes that belonged at the OK Corral” when the going was tough in a match, but another on the show countered that with a wonderful description: “He has the ruthless, icy gaze of a German U-Boat commander scanning the Atlantic for ships to sink.”

One of the most famous photographs from the 1995 Rugby World Cup final was taken early in the game when the block-busting All Black wing Jonah Lomu was on the rampage and Van der Westhuizen (who had taken numbing injections to a rib injury to enable him to play in the final) flung himself into the path of the Tongan and cut him down at the ankles.

Lomu never scored that day (or ever against South Africa) and his opposite number at Ellis Park, James Small, later said that Joost’s courageous fling at the boots of the behemoth to bring “it” to a crashing halt, gave the team added belief that Lomu could be stopped.

But it was on attack that Van der Westhuizen was at his best. He had “white line fever” more than most and had the power, strength and tenacity to bash himself over for try after try.

If a Springbok or Bulls pack was advancing near the opposition line, it was an almost certainty that the rampaging scrumhalf would smash over. He was that determined.

Van der Westhuizen for some time held the record for the most tries as a Springbok, eventually broken by Bryan Habana.

Joost’s 38 tries were scored in 89 Tests, an incredible record for a scrumhalf. Habana, superb as he is, would be expected as a wing to score more than a scrumhalf after having being on the receiving end of creative movements (to date, 67 tries from 124 Tests).

But Joost was not just a finisher. He was a demolisher. If he had a sniff of the tryline, he would almost always score. One of his most famous tries was at the 1999 Rugby World Cup, the Springbok quarter-final victory over England most remembered for the five drop goals kicked by Jannie de Beer.

But those at the Stade de France in Paris that day will recall that the momentum shift in the game came seconds before half time when Joost, bandaged almost from head to foot because of innumerable injuries, set his sights on the corner flag and ran for his life though a white-coloured brick wall to miraculously get the ball down in field.

From my position in the media box, I had a view of Clive Woodward, and when Joost scored that try I saw Woodward throw his head back in dismay. He knew that it was a telling moment.

England heads dropped, the Boks entered the change rooms in front after a fierce first half, and De Beer did the rest.

That is possibly the best image we should recall of Joost van der Westhuizen. He was bandaged like a mummy and took half the England team on his back as he forced that game-breaking try.

By Mike Greenaway

Following Explosive Super Bowl Performance Live Nation Announces Lady Gaga Joanne World Tour

Lady Gaga Joanne World Tour

Kicking off In North America on August 1st and Europe on Sept. 22nd

Rock In Rio Festival appearance confirmed for September 15th

Tickets on sale starting Feb. 10th

NEW YORK, Feb. 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Lady Gaga will be traveling the globe with the ‎Joanne World Tour starting on August 1st in Vancouver, BC and September 22nd in Barcelona with a series of concert dates throughout Europe and the UK before returning to North America in November and December this year.


Grammy and Golden Globe winner and Academy Award-nominated Lady Gaga is a one-of-a kind artist and performer. She has amassed an outstanding 30 million global album sales and 150 million single sales, making her one of the best-selling musicians of all time. Gaga is also one of the biggest living forces in social media with over 61 million likes on Facebook, over 65.1 million followers on Twitter and over 21.3 million followers on Instagram. Her fifth studio album “Joanne” was recently released and debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top 200, marking her 4th consecutive #1 album – the first female to do so in the 2010s.

Tickets for Lady Gaga Joanne World Tour are on sale Friday, February 10th in Barcelona, Paris, Zurich, Hamburg, Berlin and Koln. Tickets go on sale Monday, February 13th for the first leg of the North American performances as well as the balance of the European dates. Tickets for the second leg of the North American Tour will go on sale on Monday, February 20th. All arena performances in North America & Europe will feature general admission on the floor, the 4 North America stadium shows have reserved seating on the floor with reserved seating in all venues in the stands. There will be a ticket limit of 8 tickets per transaction for all first day sales.

Citi cardmembers can take advantage of a special pre-sale opportunity for show dates in the United States, beginning Wednesday, February 8th at 9am through Sunday, February 12 at 5pm for all performances going on sale on Monday, February 13th. For concerts going on sale the following Monday, February 20th Citi cardmembers may access pre-sale tickets from Wednesday, February 15 at 9am through Sunday, February 19th at 5pm (all times local). For complete pre-sale details visit: There is an 8 ticket limit per transaction.

Lady Gaga Joanne World Tour is produced by Live Nation Global Touring.

Date: City: Venue: On sale:
1-Aug-17 Vancouver, BC Rogers Arena Mon. Feb. 13
3-Aug-17 Edmonton, AB Rogers Place Mon. Feb. 13
5-Aug-17 Tacoma, WA Tacoma Dome Mon. Feb. 13
8-Aug-17 Los Angeles, CA The Forum Mon. Feb. 13
11-Aug-17 Las Vegas, NV T-Mobile Arena Mon. Feb. 13
13-Aug-17 San Francisco, CA AT&T Park (Stadium) Mon. Feb. 13
15-Aug-17 Sacramento, CA Golden 1 Center Mon. Feb. 13
19-Aug-17 Omaha, NB CenturyLink Center Mon. Feb. 13
21-Aug-17 St. Paul, MN Xcel Energy Center Mon. Feb. 13
23-Aug-17 Cleveland, OH Quicken Loans Arena Mon. Feb. 13
25-Aug-17 Chicago, IL Wrigley Field (Stadium) Mon. Feb. 13
28-Aug-17 New York City, NY Citi Field (Stadium) Mon. Feb. 13
1-Sep-17 Boston, MA Fenway Park (Stadium) Mon. Feb. 13
4-Sep-17 Montreal, QC Bell Centre Mon. Feb. 13
6-Sep-17 Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre Mon. Feb. 13
10-Sep-17 Philadelphia, PA Wells Fargo Center Mon. Feb. 13
15-Sep-17 Rio De Janeiro, BR Rock In Rio Festival Thu. Apr. 6
22-Sep-17 Barcelona, ES Palau Sant Jordi Fri. Feb. 10
24-Sep-17 Zurich, CH Hallenstadion Fri. Feb. 10
26-Sep-17 Milan, IT Mediolanum Forum Fri. Feb. 10
29-Sep-17 Hamburg, DE Barclaycard Arena Fri. Feb. 10
1-Oct-17 Antwerp, BE Sportpaleis Mon. Feb. 13
3-Oct-17 Amsterdam, NL Ziggo Dome Mon. Feb. 13
6-Oct-17 Paris, FR AccorHotels Arena Fri. Feb. 10
9-Oct-17 London, UK O2 Arena Fri. Feb. 10
15-Oct-17 Birmingham, UK Barclaycard Arena Fri. Feb. 10
17-Oct-17 Manchester, UK Manchester Arena Fri. Feb. 10
21-Oct-17 Copenhagen, DK Royal Arena Mon. Feb. 13
23-Oct-17 Stockholm, SE Ericsson Globe Mon. Feb. 13
26-Oct-17 Berlin, DE Mercedes-Benz Arena Fri. Feb. 10
28-Oct-17 Koln, DE Lanxess Arena Fri. Feb. 10
5-Nov-17 Indianapolis, IN Bankers Life Fieldhouse Mon. Feb. 20
7-Nov-17 Detroit, MI Little Caesars Arena Mon. Feb. 20
10-Nov-17 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun Mon. Feb. 20
13-Nov-17 Louisville, KY KFC Yum! Center Mon. Feb. 20
15-Nov-17 Kansas City, MO Sprint Center Mon. Feb. 20
16-Nov-17 St. Louis, MO Scottrade Center Mon. Feb. 20
19-Nov-17 Washington, DC Verizon Center Mon. Feb. 20
20-Nov-17 Pittsburgh, PA PPG Paints Arena Mon. Feb. 20
28-Nov-17 Atlanta, GA Philips Arena Mon. Feb. 20
30-Nov-17 Miami, FL American Airlines Arena Mon. Feb. 20
1-Dec-17 Tampa, FL Amalie Arena Mon. Feb. 20
3-Dec-17 Houston, TX Toyota Center Mon. Feb. 20
5-Dec-17 Austin, TX Frank Erwin Center Mon. Feb. 20
8-Dec-17 Dallas, TX American Airlines Center Mon. Feb. 20
9-Dec-17 Oklahoma City, OK Chesapeake Energy Arena Mon. Feb. 20
12-Dec-17 Denver, CO Pepsi Center Mon. Feb. 20
14-Dec-17 Salt Lake City, UT Vivint Smart Home Arena Mon. Feb. 20

For complete tour and ticket information, visit: &

SOURCE Live Nation Entertainment

THE GREAT MOSCOW CIRCUS IS IN TOWN – ROLL UP from 3 to 12 February 2017- Founders Garden Foreshore

Roll Up, Roll Up !

The world’s favourite circus has arrived in Cape Town

Founders Garden, Jan Smuts Street, Foreshore
From 3 to 12 February 2017

The Great Moscow Circus has arrived in Cape Town with its fleet of containers and a team of highly skilled men and women who have constructed the spectacular red and white Big Top down on the Foreshore. It can be seen clearly from the Nelson Mandela Boulevard as you enter the city and will remain there for the limited 10-day season from 3 to 12 February 2017.

Cape Town welcomes this world-famous Circus and their international guests, who together with Russia’s greatest circus stars, come from Cuba, the Ukraine, Belarus, Canada, Brazil, Columbia, the USA and Mexico. All have been carefully selected by Andrew Guild, International Producer and Director of Theatre Tours International, to bring you a world premiere programme that you will never forget.

‘Roll Up, Roll Up! The circus is coming to town’ … This simple phrase for centuries has sent shivers of excitement through children and adults alike who will always remember the smell of popcorn, the excitement of entering The Big Top, the music as the lights were dimmed and the show began with its magnificent circus stars and hilarious clowns. The Great Moscow Circus is no different. It is a circus for all ages with death defying acts, circus royalty, a famed Ring Master and clowns that speak all languages without saying a word.

The circus received rave reviews in Johannesburg. Audiences applauded for more and booked to see the show again. Performances sold out!

Committed to a kinder world, The Great Moscow Circus South Africa contains no animal acts

Book your tickets now as the season is limited in Cape Town. Ticket prices range from R195 to R595 per person. There is a R45 discount for children between the ages of 2 and 14 years. Book now through Computicket, Shoprite and Checkers outlets. Call 0861 915 8000 or book online at or

Entrance to the circus is on Jan Smuts Street on the corner of FW de Klerk Boulevard. next to Artscape and the Zip Zap Circus School. Parking is all around the area as well as in the Artscape underground.

From Cape Town, the tour dates include –

– From 16 February 2017, The Windmill, Bloemfontein
– From 23 February 2017, The Boardwalk, Port Elizabeth
– From 4 March 2017, Suncoast Casino & Entertainment World, Durban

For more information visit

Cape Town
All Regions

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