Friday, 27 January 2012

King Joe Is Back

As promised last time out, to set you up perfectly for the weekend, here are some brand new sounds from Joe Shirimani. As regular readers will know, Joe is a bit of a hero of mine. Despite the healthy competition for the title, I consider him still to be the main man on the Tsonga/Shangaan scene.

2011 was a bit of a come-back year for Joe, after taking some time off from music to train as a sangoma (a traditional healer). And he came back with a vengeance. Early in the year he released  “Joe Shirimani na Bangoni Bandawu”, which I have not yet heard in full but a copy of which is waiting for me in Cape Town and I'll pick it up at Easter. The album was a smash and won best Xitsonga disco album of the year at the MLFM awards. Putting his producer hat on he launched the career of his latest protege, Benny Mayengani, who won best male vocalist at the same awards thanks to his hit single "Tiba Ben", which we have featured here before.

Fuelled by the enthusiastic response Joe got back in the studio with his younger brother Prince Rhangani (whose own solo album is also waiting for us in Cape Town), Benny and various other guests to produce the album "Banana", which was presented to an expectant and grateful public in November, credited to Joe Shirimani na Vana Va Ndonda. It is, as you would expect, a bit of a corker. Joe has incorporated some elements of the Shangaan electro sound that is proving so popular with the hipsters in Brooklyn and Brussels but without moving away from his own signature sound. Here the two opening tracks.

Many thanks to Bram (aka DJ LeBlanc) for fixing me up with this album. I owe you one.

"Hi Nghenile" - Joe Shirimani na Vana Va Ndonda

"Banana" - Joe Shirimani na Vana Va Ndonda (featuring Rose Chabala)

We've shown this clip of Joe many times but, until some new clips are available on YouTube, we'll have to keep showing it. Which is hardly a hardship.


  1. My pleasure, thanks for everything! Bram - Dj Leblanc

  2. Love this blog, thanks for these regular updates!

  3. i like your music bra joe