Maskandi musician opts for Afro-jazz

BULAWAYO - South Africa-based musician Sebenzani “Mehlokazulu” Mnqolo has ditched maskandi in favour of Afro jazz.

Mehlokazulu, who made a name for himself playing maskandi, told the Daily News that it was time to adopt a new beat.

“I have three albums under my belt. Though my music was predominantly maskandi it always had an Afro-jazz flavour,” the Kezi-born artiste said.

He added that some of his fans had encouraged him to venture into a new terrain.

“Some of my fans felt that trying out Afro-jazz would take my music to a higher level. In line with this advice, I have since released a new album titled Inja Kamalume. The album has 10 tracks,” Mehlokazulu said.

On his latest offering, which was co-produced by guitarist Mthabisi Moyo, with DJ Face doing the engineering, Mehlokazulu featured popular poet Bongani Ncube.

Potential hits on the album include I am sorry, Ngithe ngilele, Emathandweni, Lengoma and the title track Inja Kamalume.

“I worked on this project for some time and I am glad that today it has finally come to fruition. To my followers, I sincerely thank you for your enduring support, and promise you that in the not too distant future, I will be recording a proper fusion of maskandi and Afro-jazz,” he said.

Mehlokazulu began his musical journey as part of the now defunct Bulawayo-based music outfit Amaqawe Esizwe in which he was a member for three years before he went to South Africa where he pursued music under a South African outfit called Junior Manhattan gospel outfit. After the group split into two, the musician decided to go solo in 2006.

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