Alexio to perform with delightful SA crooner

HARARE - Zimbabwe get ready for South African Afro-pop singing sensation, Ntando Bangani!

One of the most exciting artistes to emerge from South Africa in the last decade, this smooth, polished songbird is about to hit the Zimbabwe music scene at the Book Café on Saturday October 20.

A programme is available at the The Book Cafe. This event is sponsored by Pamberi Trust, The Italian Embassy and the National Arts Council.

It is billed to be an explosive collaboration with Alexio Kawara, as part of the October International Jazz and World Music Festival 2012.

Ntando has been thrilling South African audiences for years.

He created an international storm with his smash hit Dali Wami.  

His debut album sold one million copies and three more albums have kept him high in the South African charts.

Ntando is a household name in South Africa, but many in Zimbabwe have not yet heard his exciting music.
Yet! A soulful singer, this dread-locked heartthrob is about to take Harare by storm.

His music is deep in the Zulu tradition, (he often wears traditional costume) and his songs are heartfelt expressions of love and loss.

An incredible performer, fans find themselves mesmerised by this dynamic singer, who gives 110  percent on stage, making a strong connection with the audience who sing along to the words of each song.

About performing he says, “You get to lose yourself and you get to experience a different dimension of life.  I really enjoy interacting with the crowd.”

Ntando arrives in Harare for the first time next week and there is no doubt that he will leave with a legion of new fans.

A frequent collaborator with South African artists such as Mafikizolo, Ringo and Bricks, Ntando will be performing at Harare's Book Cafe, collaborating with Zimbabwe's own musical star, Kawara.

The two have very similar styles. Both love to sing about romance. Both have deeply moving voices from years of practice singing to packed audiences.

Kawara is probably more familiar to local concert-goers.  

Many know Alexio as the man behind the popular 2008 hit, Shaina.

Born and raised in Glen Norah, Alexio comes from a talented family of musicians, and his music (all of which he writes himself) has moved many both locally and internationally.

He is an established and much-beloved singer whose soulful voice rings with earnest, powerful love songs.

About his music Alexio says, “My music is very rich in lyrics, it’s very romantic.  

When I sing about love, I try to make it as romantic as possible because I am very romantic.

And so, it’s a mixture of jazz and modern music.

“I try to do even hip-hop, R’n’B and ragga music, but I try to jazz it up a little, because I think jazz is for mature people.

“So basically I sing about anything-social commentary.  As long as it’s positive, I try to impart a positive message to people.”

Both artistes are very excited about the opportunity to come together on stage at the October International Jazz and World Music Festival next weekend.

Ntando says, “I feel very honored to be asked to work with Alexio. I am very grateful. I was not really expecting it and I am gonna grab this opportunity with both hands. I am looking forward to it.  He's quite a good artist. He can sing on top of different beats”.

Just as excited is Alexio who says, “I will be performing with what I think is one of the coolest upcoming artistes from SA.

“I think he's cool.  I had a chance to listen to his music, and I would classify him under Ringo's genre of music which is very romantic.  And so that makes us two of a kind.”

Both artistes will use this opportunity to remind the world of their immense talent, and to give an exciting unrivaled show that will be a highlight of the festival.

They are consummate performers, whose infectious enthusiasm for their music runs deep.

Both are a mixture of self-taught and schooled musicians, who feel passionately about connecting to the audience with irresistible dance moves.

Ntando will work with Alexio and his band, Shades of Black to fuse the Ntando and Alexio vibe.

This unprecedented collaboration promises to be a truly unique and exciting performance.

Fans can expect to hear all of Ntando's popular songs including, the smash hit Dali Wami, Ngomso, Uyakhumbula and the ragga-infused, Ngiyosebenza.  

Alexio fans will also be thrilled to hear his classic chart-toppers including, Karwiyo aka, Musikana akanaka and of course, Shaina his timeless, uplifting song that has become popular all over the world.
 
Ntando says: “Music is an international language”, and on Saturday 20 October, Zimbabweans will see two amazing musicians speak a new language for the first time.

The Ntando-Alexio collaboration opens on Saturday October 20 with another gifted afropop artist of Zimbabwe, Willis Wataffi.

The October International Jazz Festival runs from the October 17 to 21 of with performances scheduled at The Book Cafe, The Italian Club and Celebration Centre. - Own Correspondent

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