Jazz Is Still Alive & Well In The City of Durban

There certainly was a time in South Africa when jazz music was alive and filled with a great mixture of new and seasoned talent such as the likes of Hugh Masekela, Jimmy Dludlu, Abdullah Ibrahim, Sipho Gumede, Judith Sephuma, Thandiswa Mazwai, Dorothy Masuka and more. It was a time when an hour would not pass without there being a jazz song being played on the airwaves and there certainly was a radio station which was almost dedicated to playing the latest of jazz, soul & R&B music, both national and international.

Sundays saw many old-timers whip out their favourite CD’s and either head to the local carwash, park their car in the yard or just outside their homes with friends, jam their favourite tracks and wash their car – of course someone would always come with a drink and what was supposed to be a car wash would end up being a chill-out session.

I am talking about the days when jazz was part of the Durban’s mainstream culture – hey, we even had a jazz music festival which used to be one of the most anticipated events in the city each year, that event is now based in Cape Town. Today, jazz music’s place has been taken over by the hip-hop music scene nationally and by the local Kwaito, House and Gqomu scene in Durban.

A city that once had numerous jazz scene’s has now become a city that is barren, cold and lacking in that brightly coloured, soulistic and head-bopping jazz music. I had thought that the jazz scene in Durban was dead until I witnessed the performance of Sibusiso “Mash” Mashiloane at Suncoast Casino‘s Sunday Beats.

His performance along with his band members that consisted of Dalisu Ndlazi, Riley Giandhari and Nick Pitman took me back to the old days, the days of that finger snapping, foot tapping and head swaying jazz that consisted just the right amount of soul, swing and an adictive musical tempo. Yep, I was brought back to life and after doing some researching I have found out that jazz is not dead at all in this city of Durban, but has rather had to go underground.

Establishments such as the Jazzy Rainbow, Bertoua Lounge, The Chairman, Zulu Jazz Lounge, Comfortzone Jazz Clermont and Mama’s Just Jazzin are just some of the places where you can find that nostalgic jazz mixed with a little  soul, bebop and R&B. Not to also forget that some of these jazz acts from time to time can be caught performing at Suncoast Casino’s Sunday Beats. Here are some social images of Durban’s jazz lovers who were in attendance.

20170305_sundaybeat_lr-39From left to right is Riley Giandhari, Sibusiso “Mash” Mashiloane, Dalisu Ndlazi & Nick Pitman

20170305_sundaybeat_lr-45Thabani Mweli and Lungile Jokazi

20170305_sundaybeat_lr-46Zweli Kunene and Lushasa

20170305_sundaybeat_lr-47Thabile Nombewu, Lerato Mhlongo and Smiley Similane

20170305_sundaybeat_lr-48Thabelo Motsoeneng, Pearl Nqoko, Mosa Motsitsi and Aubrey Radebe



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