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Wednesday 10 July 2013

Tsonga Disco: Machonisi

I have been sorely neglecting the Tsonga Disco of late. I justify it to myself on the grounds that I have to ration my collection of 45-50 Tsonga CDs, but this has been starvation not rationing. I will start putting that right tonight. But I will also pledge that August is going to be Tsonga month.

We will warm you up with a couple of tracks from an excellent CD from 2008 by Machonisi called "Bohani Tinjovo Mincina". It is co-produced by Patson Chauke - whose work we have featured here before - and Nelson de Klerk. Not perhaps the most traditional of Tsonga names, de Klerk, but it's a broad church.

I have no idea whether Machonisi is a "he", "she" or a "they". In fact, I rather suspect they do not exist independently of the fevered imaginations of Patson and Nelson. What I can tell you, though, is that the music is as funky as the cover.

"Makolota" - Machonisi

"Somlandela" - Machonisi

Since I started this blog four years or so back with the aim of promoting Tsonga (also known as Shangaan) music, it has gained a much higher profile. Nothing to do with me I hasten to add. It is all down to the likes of my hipster pal Wills Glasspiegel and the good folks at Honest Jon's Records for licensing and putting out a compilation of Nozinja's electro sounds.

Now, while anything that brings Tsonga sounds to a wider public is good with me, I have to confess electro isn't my preferred variety. It is probably my age but, to paraphrase Chuck Berry's views on modern jazz, I find they play it too darn fast and change the beauty of the melody. Here's Chuck to elaborate.

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