Monday, 7 June 2010

This Week's Picks (#4) World Cup Ed.

 This weeks' music picks are inspired by the anticipated start of the World Cup in South Africa. South Africa is known for its music and to pick only three tracks to represent South Africa was not an easy task. This small selection cannot represent the variety of sounds coming from this beautiful country. None the less, please enjoy our selections for this week.

"Khawuleza" by Miriam Makeba

It is impossible to talk about South African music without mentioning Miriam Makeba. She was a singer and civil rights activist caught up in apartheid South Africa. She came to be known as the voice of Africa, earning herself the endearing title of Mama Afrika. As Miriam explains in the video, this song is based on the phrase "Khawuleza" meaning "hurry." It is a plea for Mama to hurry away from the police coming to raid the house for one thing or another. It is a painfully beautiful song that serves to remind us of the terrors of the apartheid.
(Reviewed by Alexandra)

"Sdudla" by TKZee

TKZee is South Africa's popular kwaito group. Kwaito is a genre of music developed in Johannesburg in the 1990s. It is a mix of house, hip-hop, rap, and African elements. Kwaito is the first music completely controlled by blacks in South Africa. So whilst like hip-hop and rap, kwaito has come to be identified with the uneducated, lower classes, it has also been an inspiration in post-apartheid South Africa. This particular song features a video of a child leading a movement of people who just can't help but join and dance. When listening, it's easy to find yourself bopping to the beat and eager to join this symbolic parade of peaceful dance and song.
(Reviewed by Alexandra)

"Fire is Low" by Freshlyground

Freshlyground is a South African band that collaborated with Shakira to write the World Cup 2010 Anthem, "Waka Waka." (You can hear the track here.) While "Waka Waka" is too commercially produced to do Freshlyground justice, this track is a better example of their excellence. The song features sweet lyrics-- "Be like the swallows, remember home as a loving tree..." The group demonstrates it's indie leanings in this song, but it remains a distinct style with a hint of blues, jazz, and African folk influences.
(Reviewed by Alexandra)

If you enjoyed some of this music, check out Putumayo's newly released CD also inspired by the upcoming World Cup.


  1. It is a beautiful song! Thank you for reading! :)

  2. oh wow some good discovery!

    i would recommend you indian music as well. its very popular :)

  3. Amough, every Wednesday we post reviews by our readers. Please email us some Indian music and we'll post it! :)