LOCKDOWN, SIPHO ‘HOTSTIX” MABUSE AT BAXTER the Review

LOCKDOWN, SIPHO ‘HOTSTIX” MABUSE AT BAXTER
by Robyn Cohen Jun 8, 2020

In October 2018, Sipho ‘Hotstix” Mabuse performed on the Baxter stage, accompanied by Tony Cedras, Roeshdien Jaz, Siphokazi Jonas, Mmino, the South African Youth Choir and other artists.

It was the second time that Mabuse played at the Baxter, during his half a century on the musical boards. We were away – one could be “away” in those days – and missed that sold out concert.

It was on for one night only.

Luckily, for us, we were fortunate to have been present at Spier, in March, 2017, when Mabuse performed with Freshlyground. This was a celebration of Mabuse’s 50th year in the music business. It was magical. Watching Mabuse performing Weeping with Zolani Mahola, Peter Cohen and Freshlyground – well – I have no words.

Still I was gutted that we missed out on the Baxter 2018 concert and was thrilled to find out that the concert had been filmed.

The recording was archived by one if the concert’s producers’ Music Exchange (MEX) and during lockdown, it was edited for live streaming on the Ticketpro Covid-19 platform.

By popular demand, the live stream has been extended until Friday – June 12, 2020.

Don’t miss it. Tickets are R20.

To find out how the stream operates, see article on this site. You cannot navigate away from the link, for example. If you do, you need another ticket Read the preview article for info.

Here is the link: https://thecaperobyn.co.za/live-stream-tickets-sipho-hotstix-mabuse-baxter-2018/

We loved watching the streamed 2018 Baxter concert. I will tell you why.

In addition to being a privilege to be able to see the extraordinary Mabuse and colleagues jamming on stage, the recording is a keepsake of a time when it was possible to gather at the theatre; dance together and rejoice in ‘being there’; being part of a live happening.

I like the fact that the film recording provides views of the audience; the joy of being present.

As with all his concerts, Mabuse’s charisma and warmth is palpable. He chats between sets and constantly gather others into his ambit.

In tandem with Mabuse, in the Baxter concert, we hear Martin Myers [manager and friend of Mabuse, Music Exchange CEO, producer] paying tribute to musical talent of South Africa, He talks about composer Trevor Jones [he has composed the music for blockbuster films like Notting Hill]. Myers talks about Tony Cedras who has played with luminaries like Paul Simon [Cedras was on the Graceland tour].

For me it come across poignantly as Myers urges us to honour our performing artists – in every way – artistically and financially. He is saying – look everyone, Trevor Jones is more appreciated -out of his home country – listen up.

The Baxter concert was staged in 2018 and now as we watch during lockdown in the Covid pandemic, those words resonate, deeply.

Artists have had their income streams decimated by the pandemic and the global lockdowns, quarantines, shelter in place – whatever name one uses – it has been catastrophic – for artists who rely on live gigs to generate income.

In the lockdown interview with Mabuse – read it on TheCapeRobyn – Mabuse notes that he doesn’t have high speed internet at his home in Soweto. Here is this extraordinary man – internationally recognised and in the lockdown, he is not wired to watch his own concert which is being streamed.

There are wonderful moments in this concert. There is that song. Sipho ‘Hotstix” Mabuse’s classic, Burn Out[1984]. “I’ve been watching you; Everyday of my life, mhhh … You gonna burn out all my love…Tonight, I’m gonna hold you till you cry…Hold you till you cry for more.” We watch in lockdown, holding on to – everything.

Roeshdien Jaz takes my breath away when he does his Waterfront song as I call it. Down by the Waterfront [2018] is his tribute to the V&A Waterfront – the vital hub that draws people from our country and from abroad. It is a synthesis of city and sea and embodies the energy of the port city of Cape Town.

The Waterfront was one of the last places that we went to, prior to lockdown. We had an errand to do there. It wasn’t a fun outing. Almost all the restaurants were closed. People were scurrying around, getting ready for lockdown. Many of those are venues which host live music. There was fear, anxiety and confusion. Who knew what was to come? Already, it looked like a ghost town – an abandoned landscape. And there on the Baxter concert stream is Jaz singing his Waterfront song and talking about this wondrous site which brings so many people together. I watch and gasp. I want to be transported back to The Waterfront, with its amphitheatre, crammed with people crushed next to each other, enjoying the beautiful city. I want to be present at a gig in one of the restaurants or watching comedy at The Cape Town Comedy Club.

I wonder which establishments will survive the lockdown. Who knows if artists will be able to perform live at The Waterfront – by the time summer 2020 arrives. I hope so

Watching the live stream of the Mabuse 2018 concert is not only about the opportunity to see an acclaimed concert via a live stream but it is also an opportunity to reflect and celebrate the creative talents of Sipho ‘Hotstix” Mabuse, Tony Cedras and others.

Buy a ticket at R20.
When theatres are open, go and watch them live. The motto of my website: Go while you can.That was put into place, way before the pandemic. You never know when you will not be able to go, is what I always said. And continue to say. In the pre pandemic says, people would tell me that they had every intention of going to an event but something came up. Or they were tired. Or they got diverted by something else. Or they forgot. Or whatever.

Now, we cannot go. We cannot commune in a theatre; at a live music event. On the other hand, we can experience the magic of the 2018 concert through a superbly filmed film recording. It is as if one is there. We ARE now here in lockdown. That is a moment to mark as well- in its pain and isolation and ache of being disconnected from others. Hopefully we will be back in theatres, watching Sipho ‘Hotstix” Mabuse and friends and we will say: “Just think, a year ago we watched the live stream at home and now we are back and the music is on the burn and everything is okay. That is all in the past.”

Don’t say after lockdown –“oh no I missed the livestream of the concert. I meant to watch it but I didn’t.” Could have. Should have. Didn’t. Go while you can. Stream it while you can.

SIPHO “HOTSTIX” MABUSE & TONY CEDRAS @ Soweto Theatre this weekend 31 MAY &1 JUNE

After an absence of more than 15 years, Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse and his band, including Paul Simon friend and respected muso Tony Cedras, will ignite the stage at this weekend’s 2 night stand at the Soweto Theatre

Tony Cedras, one of South Africa’s rarely celebrated living legends, will be on stage come Friday 31 May and 1 June , alongside his long-time friend and peer, Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse.

Tony, along with a host of other great talent including ,Billy Monama, Gloria Bosman, Jude Harpstar, Neo Motsatse, Amazing Voices ,Poorvi Bhana, Ashish Joshi will take to the stage at The Soweto Theatre in support of Sipho’s much-anticipated Soweto show.

Accomplished Elsie’s River-born accordion, harmonium, keyboard and guitar player, Tony’s discography is eye-wateringly impressive. Think Winston Mankuku, Robbie Jansen, Basil Moses, amongst others, and know that Tony’s magic has imbued and travelled right around the world over the past 40 years. From living in London, to touring the world with Paul Simon, his musical palate and field of reference is vast

Sipho’s long-overdue Soweto Theatre return is set to be a night worth capturing in time, “Sipho and I share a crisscross frame of references and we’re entirely connected each time we perform together,” Tony shares. “The magic will happen in the room, on the night. That excites me, as it should the fans who’ll be coming out to share in Sipho’s return to his spiritual home Soweto .”

Presenting music that rose above the politics of yesteryear, Tony and Sipho’s talent and influence that has actively fed a cultural curiosity, will be on display when these two greats grace the stage together. “I need to be inspired,” Tony explains. “Where better than The Soweto Theatre to celebrate “Hotstix” in full flight?”

Sipho teases. “We’ll be doing be delivering some riveting performances.” Promoted as an intimate experience, this show is going to be special. “I’m as excited for the audience to see and hear some of the new talent too,” Sipho says. “We’ll share the stage, not have it divided.” Always motivating and inspiring young talent, “Hotstix” is the silent ambassador giving future generations an opportunity and voice in a space where they would otherwise be mute. “Once you have a gift, share it,” he insists. “Share the gift. Pass it on. For me, it is very important that these young musicians and wordsmiths take the baton and run with it.”

“Hotstix” has actively influenced and help shape the South African popular music songbook over the past 50 years. Those lucky enough to have secured a ticket to this show will get to enjoy it all, played out in rare live performance. “We’ll be bringing a narrative many people don’t realise. It’s so important in entrenching belief in ourselves of what we make here, at home.

Tony and I are living proof of that with the music we’ve made and continue to invest in. “Tony’s talent is beyond belief!” Sipho asserts. “Fans will see that on the night. I’m excited for us all!” the “Burn Out” and “Shikisha” hitmaker concludes. Soweto is home for me and holds fond memories for me. We intend honouring the iconic venue with a stunning two -night show, playing all the hits and throwing in a few surprises along the way too.”

Tickets cost from R180 to R550.00 each and the show will run for 90 minutes, with no interval.

Tickets are on sale now and can be bought at The Soweto Theatre ticket office or online at webtickets.co.za

3rd most read contributor for Biz Lounge two years in a row

I have been given a wonderful platform to open the world up to well know and not so well known artists for over 2 years now on Biz Community in the portal called Biz Lounge.

We have interviewed the good and the great including :

Phil Manzanera of Roxy Music recently inducted into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame

Tony Cedras who worked with Paul Simon

the multi talented RJ Benjamin

world class poet Siphokazi Jonas

rising star Bianca Blanc

Super star Chad Saaiman,

Biggest selling artist inDecember 2018 Vusi Nova to name but a few

The articles come out once a week and if you wish to be featured do contact me

So for 2019 I was the 3rd most read contibutor for a second year running

The platform is available to all artists ,you just have to reach out to me to be featured email info

Have a fantastic 2019 and keep reaching for blue skies.

The Music Exchange dates are out for 2019 …1st week September and booking is open at Quicket.

My tribute to my dear friend Ray Phiri that I put on Facebook

Rest in peace my friend Ray Phiri – I know you are at peace – I remember the Unfinished Story so well when I was at UCT and the lifelong friendship we developed .A giant friend has passed – I will not whisper in the deep .

I spoke to Hotstix Mabuse (who we manage ) this morning and he is devasted “He said to me Mart I have no words ” Sipho and Ray did so much work together and when they got together it was always fun.

I remember touring with Ray and working on the Unfinished Story tour at the Good Hope Centre in 1987.

My daughter Casey Barclay has heard “Whispers in the deep” countless times on the school run in the morning .Ray helped shaped my love and continued love of SA Music.

When my wife Razia Myers met Ray she remarked what a gentle soul he has and amazing aura.

Ray had so much wisdom to give and he gave willingly

Argus page 10

the full page in the Argus

the Cape Times -front page

4 more shows added this week for Pops Mohamed & Dave Reynolds tour of Cape Town

What an amazing week -Sold out show across 3 venues in Cape Town for Pops Mohamed & Dave Reynolds .

They have added 4 more shows starting on Thursday 12 March and culminating in fantastic intimate house concert in Pinelands on Sunday 15th March at 3.30pm with special guest Auriol Hays

Pops Mohamed is SA’s leading indigenous-contemporary-crossover artist. A multi-instrumentalist, he plays kora (African harp), mbira (thumb piano), Khoisan Bow, and various percussion effects. He has released 37 albums in his career, won awards such as the ACT Lifetime Achievers, recorded and made movies with the Khoisan people in the Kalahari, and toured globally with performers such as Andreas Vollenweider and Baaba Maal. Recently Pops featured on the TV show 21 Icons

Dave Reynolds is SA’s leading steel-pan player, a SAMRO Award winning composer and acoustic guitarist. He has performed and recorded all over the world with Steve Newman, Hugh Masekela, the late Gito Baloi, Tony Cox, the late Sipho Gumede, Paul Hanmer and McCoy Mrubata.

Pops Mohamed and Dave Reynolds will be joined by is folk singer / bass player Sylvain Baloubeta for some of the concerts. He is the regular bassist for Neo Muyanga and the Frank Paco Ensemble.

Thurs 12 March

Kronendal Music Academy, Hout Bay

NGO providing music in Hout Bay

Public workshop / performance / master-class

Time: 3pm – 5pm

Tickets: R80

Book: At the door

With Pops Mohamed, Dave Reynolds & Sylvain Baloubeta

Friday 13 March

The Forge, Kalk Bay

Time: 8pm

Tickets: R 110 – Quicket

With Pops Mohamed, Dave Reynolds & Sylvain Baloubeta

Sun 15 March

House Concert

12 St Heliers Rd, Muizenberg

Brunch provided

Time: 10am

Tickets: R140 – Quicket

Sunday 15th March – PINELANDS in a private home

(near Howard Centre ) tickets R120.00 with special guest Auriol Hays

to book email martin or phone 083 448 4475

Paul Simon Performs ‘Graceland’ in South Africa 25 Years Later for Documentary

August 01, 2011

By Diane Coetzer, Johannesburg

Before a small gathering of people at a studio in the depths of South Africa’s national broadcaster SABC, Paul Simon revisited the magic of his 1986 Grammy Award winning record, Graceland.

Dedicating the short concert to the late South African singer Miriam Makeba, Simon was joined on stage by most of the original players on Graceland, which sold over 14 million copies following its release

This included guitarist Ray Phiri (who was also an arranger on the original recording), New York-based bassist Bakithi Khumalo, and Vusi Khumalo and Isaac Mtshali, alternating on drums. Also present for signature songs “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes” and “Homeless” was Ladysmith Black Mambazo, with leader Joseph Shabalala – adding to the emotional impact of the short show.

Simon described the 11-song performance as something “between a rehearsal and a concert”. “It’s a great joy to be reunited after so many years,” Simon said. “When I landed in South Africa, it felt like I was coming home. It’s such a nice feeling.”

The performance was filmed as part of a documentary Simon is making on Graceland. Details of the film have not yet been released but according to sources it is in partnership with one of the cable networks.

Among the songs performed and recorded last night were ‘I Know What I Know”, “The Boy in the Bubble”, “Crazy Love”, “Diamonds on the Soles Of Her Feet” and “You Can Call Me Al”.

Contributing to last night’s show was veteran South African performer, Hugh Masekela who took center stage with a rendition of his songs, “Grazing In The Grass” and ‘Stimela”. Simon paid tribute to the trumpeter and songwriter, along with South African artist Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse and producer Koloi Lebona for their role in putting together the Graceland project during the height of the repressive South African apartheid regime.

Originally released on Warner in 1986, a reissue of Graceland will come through Sony Legacy to mark its 25th anniversary. The label has not yet revealed details.

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