The group made famous, worldwide, after appearing on Paul Simon’s album, Graceland, is appropriately the next performance on the list of world-class music groups in the 2013-14 Graceland University Performing Arts Series.
In a career that spans over 50 years, South Africa’s Ladysmith Black Mambazo has garnered multiple GRAMMY® awards, including one for Best World Music Album at the 2014 Grammy Awards in January. They have earned many nominations and critical acclaim, and continue to sell out concerts in prestigious venues worldwide. Reviewing a recent performance at Carnegie Hall, Jon Pareles of The New York Times noted a distinctly Zulu quality of the group’s songs when he described them as “music that had survived sorrows to find benedictions in the aftermath.”
The group’s forthcoming album, Always With Us, exemplifies this spiritual dimension, paying tribute to Nellie Shabalala, group matriarch and wife of Founder-Leader, Joseph Shabalala, by making a fully-produced cycle of songs featuring their own voices alongside vocals she recorded for Black Mambazo founder-leader Joseph before her death in 2002.
The raw material for Always With Us is a collection of songs Nellie recorded with her own singing group from the township church she and her husband founded. Joseph and his fellow singers have spent several years mixing their vocals with Nellie’s to create all new songs. The result is a collection of ten hauntingly beautiful recordings in which Nellie is rejoined with her husband and Ladysmith Black Mambazo. It is the first album in their over forty year recording history to feature female Zulu vocalists singing traditional songs.
Described once by Nelson Mandela as “South Africa’s cultural ambassadors,” Ladysmith Black Mambazo will also be incorporating a tribute to one of their faithful fans, the late South African “Father of the Nation” into their performance at Graceland University.
Don’t miss this opportunity to treat your soul to the blended harmonies and traditional Zulu dance moves of Ladysmith Black Mambazo. Tickets are on sale now at the Ticket Office in Shaw Center at Graceland University or by going online at www.graceland.edu/shawtickets.