South African trumpeter, singer and ONE member Hugh Masekela may be an octogenarian, but the award-winning musician is still making news like he did in the 1960s. Apart from being one of the spokespersons of our Hungry No More campaign to end famine in Africa, he just came out with a new album, Jabulani.
Jabulani, which means “to rejoice” in Zulu, pays tribute to Masekela’s roots. Masekela grew up in Kwa-Guqa Township in Witbank, South Africa, and memories of community festivities shine through in his newest recording.
“This is a tribute to the township weddings of yesteryear,” he explains in the CD’s liner notes. “I pray that these kinds of wedding celebrations can come back into our lives.”
He brings them into ours with 11 rousing songs that feature both his signature flugelhorn and his robust voice, kept company by an enthusiastic back-up choir. The songs’ lyrics bring the signature characteristics of wedding days to life: As Maskela writes, “joy, apprehension, doubt, downright excitement and endless advice” all make an appearance — and he rejoices in them all.