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Close matches: 11
Close matches1
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
BeatersHarari ... LP
Sun/Matsuli (UK), 1975. New Copy (reissue)... $28.99
A landmark album on the South African scene of the 70s – a set that mixes together currents of jazz and funk, but at the start of a sound that would break forth even more in the decade to come! Yet The Beaters were there at the start – a young trio that includes drummer Sipho Mabuse, who'd become a very famous solo act later on – here, part of a combo that's energetic, filled with new ideas, and spinning out long tracks that shine with a special sort of spiritual vibe! The sound is a bit hard to describe – unlike anything on the West African or South African scene of the time – plenty of long-spun rhythms with warm jazzy currents, but a unique flavor in the way the group puts the whole thing across. The set features work from jazzmen Dudu Makasi and Dennis Mpale – and titles include "Love Love Love", "Harari", "Thiba Kamoo", "What's Happening", "Push It On", and "Inhlupheko Ipheile". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches2
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Johnny Dyani & Okay TemizWitchdoctor's Son ... LP
Yonca/Matsuli (UK), 1976. New Copy Gatefold (reissue)... $28.99
One of the hippest albums we've ever heard from bassist Johnny Dyani – and that's saying a lot, given his tremendous records of the 70s! The album's different than the album that Johnny recorded with fellow Blue Notes members on the Steeplechase label – and instead, the group here is led by percussionist Okay Temiz, and mixes Johnny's round, bold lines on acoustic bass with additional electric bass, plus clarinet and saxes too! The tunes are heavily rhythmic – still jazz, but with very strong global currents too – an even rootsier vibe than most jazz of the South African scene from whence Dyani came – in a mode that really seems to set him free. Johnny also plays a bit of piano, too – and the tracks are a mix of Dyani originals, plus Temiz arrangements of traditional Turkish tunes. Titles include "Gece", "Yesl Fener", "Ben Muslumanim", "Moriva", "Hepimiz Icin", "Elhamdulillah Marimba", and "Doktur". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches3
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Harari (The Beaters)Rufaro/Happiness ... LP
Sun/Matsuli (UK), 1976. New Copy (reissue)... $28.99
Seminal South African work from Harari – a group who'd previously recorded as The Beaters, but changed their name after getting a new spiritual awakening while touring Zimbabwe! That new name and new spirit really fits the sound here – an even deeper incarnation of the style they forged a few years before – graced by the increasingly strong musical chops of the trio, which features Sipho Mabuse on drums, Alek Khaoli on bass, and Selby Ntuli on keyboards – all coming together in this magical musical flow that's often graced by their joined-up vocals as well! Some tunes are straightforward and funky, others take a nice long time to build and find their way – and the set also features some nice work from jazz legend Kippie Moketsi on alto sax! Titles include "Uzulu", "Musikana", "Afrogas", "Rufaro", and "Oya Kae". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches4
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Dick KhozaChapita ... CD
Sun/Matsuli (UK), 1976. New Copy ... $14.99
One of the hippest bits of funk we've heard from the South African scene of the 70s – a record that mixes in plenty of currents from spiritual jazz, with a vibe that's very similar to the albums by Oneness Of Juju from the same time! The set's got this very universal appeal – earlier South African jazz modes blended with changes in 70s funk and soul – almost like a looser take on the music of Earth Wind & Fire, but with more focus on the instrumental elements overall! And those elements are great all the way through – with work from Dick Khoza on percussion, alongside lots of tenor, trumpet, trombone, and electric piano by a very jazzy lineup – plus vocals from Edger Dirgole too. Most tracks are nice and long, and really find their groove right from the start – on titles that include "Chapita", "Zumbwe", "African Jive", "Lilongwe", and "WD 46 Mendi Road". CD

Close matches5
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Hugh MasekelaLive In Lesotho ... LP
Matsuli (UK), 1981. New Copy 2LP Gatefold (reissue)... $34.99
It's a strange thing to see Hugh Masekela sitting on a horse, out in a field – and the cover hardly gets at the energy that's going on inside – since the album features a full, funky live performance from the famous trumpeter – at a time when his group included piano and keyboards from the great Don Blackman! The style's a blend of funk with some of Hugh's older South African styles – served up on very long tracks that have Masekela singing a fair bit too, but with ample solo space for solos from great musicians who include Rene McLean on alto and tenor, and Victor Bailey on bass. Blackman did all the arrangements with Hugh, and you can really hear his sophisticated touch – on titles that include "Sister Fania", "Healing Song", "Stimela", "Part Of A Whole", "Ashiko", and "Ha Le Se Le Li Khanna". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches6
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Busi MhlongoUrban Zulu (with bonus download) ... LP
MELT 2000/Matsuli (UK), 1999. New Copy (reissue)... $29.99
Groundbreaking work from Busi Mhlongo – a real shift in South American soul at the end of the 90s, almost as if the set was marking the new sense of pride and nation that was taking place at the tip of the continent! Mhlongo's vocals are amazing – expressive in familiar soul ways, but with a range that's really mesmerizing – served up with rhythms that roll along in styles that echo older musical modes of the nation, but leaner and more focused – as are the chorus vocals on most tracks too! Titles include "Uganga Nge Ngane", "Yapheli'Mali Yami", "We Baba Omcane", "Oxamu", "Zithinizizwe", and "Ngadlalwa Yindoda". LP, Vinyl record album
(Includes download.)

Close matches7
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Bheki MselekuCelebration ... LP
World Circuit/Matsuli (UK), 1992. New Copy 2LP Gatefold ... $34.99
Fantastic music from Bheki Mseleku – a South African artist who was one of the strongest forces keeping the spiritual jazz flame alive in the 90s – and one who sadly passed away before he could see the rest of the world re-embrace music this strong! Bheki plays both piano and tenor sax – the former more than the latter, but both with a strong modal vibe – imbued with the best of the post-Coltrane spirits, and set up here with a great core trio that features Michael Bowie on bass and Marvin Smitty Smith – plus added work from Jean Toussaint on tenor, Steve Williamson and Courtney Pine on soprano, and Eddie Parker on flute! Songs are long, and have a great sense of flow – and titles include "Supreme Love", "The Age Of Inner Knowing", "Joy", "Celebration", "One For All", "Angola", "Blues For Africa", and "The Messenger". LP, Vinyl record album
(First time on vinyl!)

Close matches8
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Pacific ExpressBlack Fire (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Matsuli (UK), 1976. New Copy (reissue)... $28.99
A seminal album from one of the hippest groups going on the South African scene of the 70s – a combo who mixed equal parts electric jazz and R&B, in a mode that's strongly inspired by American groups of the time! The Pacific Express vibe has plenty of echoes of the Earth Wind & Fire sound of the mid 70s, but also has jazzier tones at times – especially on the keyboards, which hit some spacey Stevie Wonder moments on some of our favorite tracks. Other tunes come across with a bit more of a crossover vibe – a style clearly engineered to overcome the racial boundaries in South Africa at the time, and one that helped the group sneak in the back door to fame The jazz component of some of the best tracks is especially high – mixing keyboard and guitar lines next to more biting sax work – and players in the group include Basil Coetzee, Robbie Jansen, and other luminaries who went onto solo fame in later years. Titles include "Feelings", "Brother", "Sky Ride II", "Black Fire", "Love Your Baby Right", "You're Everything", and "Windsong". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches9
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Dudu Pukwana & The SpearsDudu Pukwana & The Spears (180 gram pressing – with bonus tracks) ... LP
Quality/Matsuli (UK), 1969. New Copy 2LP Gatefold (reissue)... $32.99
Amazing work from South African jazz legend Dudu Pukwana – a rare album from 1969, plus a never-issued set of tracks done for Atlantic Records at the same time! The core album, titled Dudu Pukwana & The Spears, features Dudu on alto, in the company of a lot of familiar players from his roots – Chris McGregor on piano, Mongezi Feza on trumpet, Louis Moholo on drums, Harry Miller on bass, and Jonas Gwangwa on trombone – plus great organ from Bob Stucky, who'd recorded with Pukwana a bit on the London scene of the 60s – and wholes presence really brings in a nice soul jazz vibe! The style is much straighter than the more avant 70s material of all players involved – and definitely has some of that upbeat South African sense of rhythm going on – nicely rollicking, and starting somewhere in the territory of a Hugh Masekela record, then moving into more of a Prestige 60s vibe. Titles include "Kwa Thula", "Joe's Jika", "Pho La", "Yima Mjalo", "Pezulu", "Thulula", and "Half Moon". The second batch of material is presented as an Atlantic Records acetate reproduction – a session produced by Joe Boyd, with more work from McGregor, Miller, Feza, and Moholo – plus the very unusual presence of Richard Thompson on guitar! Bob Stuckey plays organ again on a few numbers, and things are much more complex – stretching out on tunes that include "Pezulu", "Izulu Liyaduduma", "Church Mouse", "Sibuyile", and an "Untitled" number. LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches10
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
✨✧ Ibrahim Khalil Shihab QuintetSpring ... LP
Atlantic City/Matsuli (UK), 1968. New Copy (reissue)... $28.99
A fantastic treasure from the South African jazz scene of the 60s – a record that's full of soul and spirit, and which draws enough from the piano of leader Chris Schilder as it does from the tenor of Winston Mankuku Ngozi! Nogzi's a player who's very much in the John Coltrane camp, but with a spirit that's all his own – a rich tone that reaches back to late 50s hardbop styles, but which gets a more fluid, modal expression here – alongside well-crafted lines from Schilder on piano, in a quintet with guitar from Garry Kriel, bass from Phillip Schilder, and drums from Gilbert Matthews. There's certainly a South African spirit in some of the rhythms, but the music itself is more in the righteous territory of late 60s Blue Note – like the most creative work from Lee Morgan or Hank Mobley – on titles that include "The Birds", "Look Up", "Before The Rain & After", "Spring", and "You Don't Know What Love Is". LP, Vinyl record album

Close matches11
CD, LP, Vinyl record album cover art
Zorro FiveJump Uptight (180 gram pressing) ... LP
Brigadiers/Matsuli (UK), 1970. New Copy ... $24.99
A rare set from Zorro Five – a South African group, but one who sound a bit like some of the best Italian sound library combos of the time – really stepping out in a hip blend of riffing guitar, hard drums, and organ! That aspect is maybe no surprise, given that Zorro Five were more of a studio combo than a live act – and they've also got this sharp, compact style that seems to be a bit influenced by the work of Booker T & The MGs – especially on the tunes that have the Hammond most strongly in the lead! The set's full of great little tunes that work well both as soul jazz numbers, and on the soul instrumental front – titles that include "The Exit Song", "Red Turnip", "Good Books", "Plastic Iron", "Barcarolle", "Molelo", "Rebel Rouser", and "Reggae Shhh". LP, Vinyl record album

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