Dick Khoza —
Chapita ... LP Sun/ToothFactory, 1976. New Copy (reissue)...
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". LP, Vinyl record album
A rare bit of funk from the South African scene of the 70s – a set with a style that's a bit different than American work of the time – maybe a bit more laidback, and with this easygoing vibe that's really great! Saitana don't have to hit you over the head with their groove, but it's definitely there – slow-stepping basslines that are wonderful, and punctuated with drum parts that hit the money, but never go too far over the top – while guitar and keyboards bring in the right sort of darker currents to match the raw, raspy quality of the group's lead singer – a great talent who's got this way of making simple, everyday lyrics come across with quite an edge! Titles include "So Lucky", "Soweto", "Rufaro", "My Pretty Thing", "Baby Don't Go", and "Maroaches Are Back". LP, Vinyl record album
Wonderfully weird work from Saitana – one of those 70s South African groups who found a way of mixing equal parts soul, funk, and psychedelic influences – then deliver the music with this languid groove that's all their own! The group has ties to other SA combos of the time – including The Beaters and Harari – but there's a very unique quality to this special set – almost a world-weary approach to funk, at least in the instrumentation – as the group steps along at a pace that's never trying to force things too much – which lets lead singer Monty Ndimande burst out with all these raw tones and surprising exclamations – partly in response to the rhythms, but often in a territory that's all his own. Titles include "Chocolate Toffee", "Friends", "Maguwa", "Doing My Thing", and "Jenakuru". LP, Vinyl record album