Cape Times personal reflection on passing of Hugh Masekela

Thank you to the Cape Times for calling me to write a personal reflection on the passing of Bra Hugh this week

Not an easy to do

Rest in Peace -Hugh

A throw back from September MUSIC EXCHANGE 2015

Join us LIVE for the 8th annual Google I/O developer conference. TODAY – 4PM (SA) Catch it all on MEX

Join us LIVE for the 8th annual Google I/O developer conference. Thursday 28 May – 4PM (SA)

Catch it all on MEX

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

Trevor Jones speaking personally about The 20th anniversary of Freedom & Democracy in South Africa

There are many special moments and memories that I have of 1994.

In particular the extraordinary experience of standing in a queue in Trafalgar Square outside South Africa House, with my mother, who was visiting me in London, she was waiting to vote in the first democratic elections of our country.

I had  my passport revoked and had been stateless for a number of years, studying in exile in Britain, and consequently could not vote.

On my return to South Africa after 29 years, my four children and I were invited to apply for re-instatement of South African citizenships by the immigration authorities.

I had vowed that I would never return to South Africa while apartheid existed and until such time as one man, one vote was instituted.  But frankly I dreamt but never believed that this would happen in my life-time.

In those years in exile I vigorously pursued my studies and forged a career in Film and Music.

There were always two cars outside my house in London which was under surveillance by the Security Police   —  while downstairs in my studio,  I was composing the music for short anti-apartheid commercials while my brother Colin Jones hosted Senior exiled members of the ANC.  He would update people like the Pahad brothers,  on  recent events in SA.

Oliver Tambo and Thabo Mbeki were my neighbours in Muswell Hill.

A couple of months after voting on the birthday of our eldest son my family and I watched the inauguration of Nelson Mandela – it was a joyous double celebration that day in our household.

Nearly a year later – on the 21st March (1995) – I watched with pride along with the rest of the world, live from Cape Town, my brother, Colin Jones, The Dean of the Cathedral hosting Madiba, The Arch, (Bishop Tutu), Martin Luther King’s widow, The Queen of England and Prince Philip, and other dignitaries,  commemorate the first human rights day   in South Africa.


This was the beginnings of our infant democracy, a twenty year young evolution and learning curve – which needs to be a constant process of change and development.

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Trevor Jones

The most important for me being Investment in our greatest resource  – the nurturing and education of our young – the next generation of the rainbow nation.

As we learn lessons about what a democracy should be and how to exercise our rights within the system, lets recall some of the words of Madiba:

.Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.

It is what we make out of what we have,     not what we are given, that separates one person   –  from another. 

He could also have said that you can lead a horse to the water but its up to us to drink – of the waters of freedom.

We look forward with hope and enthusiasm to the next twenty years as we learn from the successes and mistakes of the last twenty years.

Success is the 10% tip of the ice-berg      –        of which 90% is striving and failure.

GOD grant us the SERENITY to accept things we cannot change.

The COURAGE to change the things we can.

AND the wisdom to know the DIFFERENCE.

District Six to Hollywood

November 25 2013 at 11:04am by Terri Dunbar-Curran


ct trevor jones oscar

MATES: Hollywood film composer Trevor Jones poses with Oscar.

AS A young boy from District Six playing truant from school, Trevor Jones spent a lot of time in the cinema. Decades later, he suspects that those hours spent in the company of an alcoholic projectionist with a habit of dozing off on the job, led to his fulfilling career as a Hollywood film composer.

Inevitably the projectionist would allow the rods to burn down and the image on screen would fade, and so Jones developed an understanding of the relationship between the image and sound. “Film needs sound to give it that realism, and make it palatable,” he says, adding that music is a direct emotional line to the audience and that it helps to bring out the meaning in films.

His days of playing truant soon passed and Jones won a scholarship to attend the Royal Academy of Music in London where he studied composition, orchestration, conducting, piano and organ. From there he went on to work at the BBC as a classical music reviewer. He also became the first composer to attend the National Film School in England.

Together with Music Exchange he will share stories from his rich career during a master class at the South African College of Music at UCT today and tomorrow from 10am to 5pm.

Jones has composed scores for films like Labyrinth, Brassed Off, The Last of the Mohicans, Cliffhanger,Notting Hill, From Hell and Around the World in 80 Days. His career has seen him work with directors Steven Spielberg, George Lucas and Sir Ridley Scott, as well as performers David Bowie, U2, Sting, Britney Spears and Elvis Costello.

ct trevor jones brassed off

A CHORD: Trevor Jones composed the music for Brassed Off. He sees a score as a way of connecting with the audience and deepening emotion.

But he has never forgotten his beginnings and how as a teenager he left behind the world he knew to go in search of Hollywood. “I was a Kaapse skollie,” he laughs. “I only discovered consommé on the boat.” With little more than the clothes he was wearing, his adventure in England began. “The only way forwards was upwards,” he recalls.

“I wanted to be a film composer, and for a kid from District Six that was like wanting to be an astronaut. In hindsight it really was like aiming for the moon, but people did get to the moon – and I did get to Hollywood!”

At this point in his life he is focusing on giving back. He firmly believes that if it wasn’t for the opportunities he was given he could still be sitting on Chapel Street. “I’m not digging roads, building structures, or finding a cure for cancer. I’m in the entertainment world and that for me is such a privilege,” he says. “I’ve been so fortunate. I do feel I’ve had a very charmed life.” But he stresses that often it’s hard work that breeds success and that’s the message he hopes to pass on to the younger generation. “Yes, I’ve been lucky, but I did work extremely hard. What you put in you get out – investing in the bank of life.”

That desire to pass on what he’s learnt is one of the reasons he’s so excited by Music Exchange which brings together music industry figures to share their experiences and encourage others. This week’s master class gives him an opportunity to extend that dialogue.

Rather than spending the time “pontificating about the essence of film music”, how to write a score and elaborating on his own creative process, Jones aims to tailor the class to his audience. “My master classes are about the people that attend them. I want to know why you’ve come and what issues you need to address.”

During the course of answering questions he’s certain the structures in Hollywood, the technicalities of creating soundtracks and copyright laws will all “trickle out”, but his main focus is finding out what the group needs. “Depending on the questions, it could be deadly boring, hysterically funny, or a mine of information. I hope it’s the latter two,” he smiles. Either way, it’ll cover the glamour and glitz as much as the nuts and bolts of the industry.

Jones is spending more time working in Cape Town, explaining that for years he’s felt “deracinated”, but he’s beginning to feel rooted again. He believes film can give a huge injection to the local economy. He explains that once Hollywood was semi-desert. “Look at it now. It’s the fifth largest economy in the world. Why? Film!”

“We just need to be unblinkered and unfettered in the way we look at ourselves and our environment.” He adds that his generation need to rid themselves of the baggage that is holding them back and start taking pride in themselves and our future.

To book for the master class, call 083 448 4475.

Cape Lures Movie Music Maestro Home – Article on Trevor Jones page 3 Sunday Times 27 Oct 2013

Trevor Jones To Mentor Idols Season Nine’s Top Eight


Trevor Jones and R J Benjamin

Trevor Jones and R J Benjamin

With the race to the final of South Africa’s ninth season of Idols fast coming down to the wire, the Top Eight finalists are about to get a qualified boost from non-other than the musical icon Trevor Jones.

For this week only, right through to Sunday, 13 October, M-Net and Mzansi Magic viewers will get the rare opportunity to watch Idols Musical Director, and celebrated musician, R J Benjamin working alongside the South African multi-award-winning, orchestral film score composer and conductor Trevor Jones. Together the two will take the Top Eight finalists on a journey that promises to be as exceptional as the talent that will walk away the single winner at the end of the season.

Flying in from his home in the UK especially for the M-Net Movies and the Idols Movie theme, Jones’ latest philanthropic commitment talks mountains of his will and want to share his wealth of experience that’s made him the living legend he is today.

Not only will Jones be putting the Top Eight through their paces this week, he’ll also be sharing insights into some of his most powerful creations. From the likes of Notting Hill, Angel Heart, The Last Of The Mohicans and Around The World In 80 Days box-office hits, Jones’ musical scores have touched the lives of millions the world over. Now he’s looking to affect the lives of eight young South Africans, all looking to have their mark felt.

This is big week for contestants and fans alike. The best part though for theses eight finalists is, regardless of who ultimately takes top honours, they all get to cherish time spent and knowledge shared that they’ll be able to apply long after Season Nine of Idols is over.

Don’t miss this week’s episode of Idols and witness Trevor Jones impart a wealth of knowledge to the Top 8 contestants on M-Net and Mzansi Magic on Sunday, 13 October at 17:30.

For more information contact:
Triple M Entertainment
Martin Myers – Manager

Trevor Jones and R J Benjamin working together this week – Watch this space.

Trevor Jones who met R J Benjamin at Music Exchange in Cape Town in March are working together this week on an exciting project

Watch this space this week please

“The Soundtrack of my Life” by Clive Davis is essential reading if you love Music

Trust me ,this book is amazing ,not only in the scope of songs he unearths for artists who we all know and love ,but also for some of the frank insights he gives regarding certain acts.

I worked for the company for many years and am personal friends with his right hand man Charles Goldstuck who has spoken at music exchange and the insights Clive gives regarding the challenges are truly amazing.

Go get the book you will not be disappointed .

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