4EverJazz & Blaque are hosting the first of several Jazz Music & Arts Fair on 1st and 2nd May 2021 at Blaque Continental Bistro at Naturally Yours Health Centre, 453 Main Rd, Bryanston, Johannesburg.

We truly sympathise and support all artists, given the long period of no performances and longing to showcase their creative and artistic abilities because of the Covid pandemic and lock downs.

Our hope is to give our local artists a way to showcase their jazz music, arts and crafts and have an opportunity to catch up and network with their peers, fans and friends. We are inviting Jazz musicians to jam and sell their CD’s, DJ’s, Poets, writers, photographers, painters, art illustrators, apparel designers, sculptors,CD, Vinyl and Book collectors etc….

We are hoping with your help and the help from our jazz community, we will be able to create a wonderful and exciting fair. Please download and fill out the form below if you would like to participate at our show. Also feel free to tell any other jazz art creators you feel may want to participate at our show.

Please email your completed form to 4everjaz@gmail.com

4everJazz hosted an amazing virtual show for women’s month on the 28th August 2020, featuring spectacular performances by 4 talented women on the WatchaTV platform. On stage was Mimi Mtshali, Wanda Baloyi, Ziza Muftic and Siya Makuzeni.

Though the show was broadcast in the evening, the soundcheck and rehearsals during the day turned out to be a glorious moment. The artists and band members were so excited to be out and about and on stage together, there was so much love and reminiscing, it was heart warming to watch. This just showed how the artists miss performing and interacting with each other.

If you still have not watched the show, it’s still available on WatchaTV, please get yourself a ticket and help support the artists who are sadly still on lockdown and cannot perform with an audience. Here are the links.

MIMI MTSHALI https://www.watchatv.co.za/WatchaShare/video.aspx?id=1471

WANDA BALOYI https://www.watchatv.co.za/WatchaShare/video.aspx?id=1473

ZIZA MUFTIC https://www.watchatv.co.za/WatchaShare/video.aspx?id=1474

SIYA MAKUZENI https://www.watchatv.co.za/WatchaShare/video.aspx?id=1472

Here are some of the spectacular moments captured behind the scenes on the day by 4everJazz and outstanding photographer Sufi Don

In celebrating women and jazz during Women’s month, 4everJazz held the first and successful  “Wine women and Jazz Experience “ in 2017 at Winnie’s Soul and Jazz Restaurant in  Wendy Wood, Sandton. We did it again in 2018 at the Southern Sun in  Hyde park, yet again in 2019 at the Johannesburg Hard Rock Cafe. We brought together leading South African women for an evening of social and business networking, music, wine and all things fabulous about the jazz lifestyle.

4everJazz is hosting the 4th episode of this event as a virtual concert streamed live on WatchaTV on the 28th August 2020 from 18h00, (Sadly without the Wine). The event will be a 2 hour concert featuring 4 artists performing a 30 minute set each. The performances will be broadcast from a specially set up virtual studio. Featured will be 4 of South Africa’s top leading women jazz artists: Wanda Baloyi, Ziza Muftic, Mimi Mtshali, Siya Makuzeni.

Every year 4everjazz aims to honour and celebrate not only the lives of the millions of talented women who continue to ascend to the stage to soothe us with their jazz music, but also these mothers, wives and partners who continue to make a home to nurture the many geniuses who create the music we call jazz.

Our theme this year “Love and Compassion” directly speaks to the current needs of our society during this tough and frustrating period of the Corona epidemic and resulting lockdown it has created. The Women and Jazz concert aims to cushion and comfort the hardships through the music and inspire love,  compassion and hope for those suffering the most, and celebrate the frontline workers & businesses keeping the country operational while raising some income for the artists featured.

WatchaTV is a live streaming platform that allows content creators to present their craft/performances to their fans and is accessible via any device including Smart TV’s tablets, Apple & Android devices and computers. It is a paid per stream made easy and people can purchase their favourite show or presentation even by using airtime bundles, or via PayFast or electronic transfer. The WatchaTV platform is offered free to the artist. *Artists can present their work from the comfort of their homes or venue and streamed live to the viewers device. WatchaTV is available on www.watchatv.co.za on all devices. WatchaTV is committed to putting more money into the pockets of the artists and the content is available for multiple views after the live stream.

To watch the show live, Register and Book your front row seat now for only R50 on  https://www.watchatv.co.za/     

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During the month of April, “Jazz Appreciation Month”, we as 4everJazz & The Moses Molelekwa Arts Foundation, are paying tribute and honouring the memory and legacy of SA’s musical genius Moses Taiwa Molelekwa who would have been turning 47 years old on the 17th April 2020.

His legacy is kept alive through the The Moses Molelekwa Arts Foundation which run by his father Jerry “Monk Molelekwa.

This is where young people are taught how to understand music notes, how to play instruments, as well as dancing and acting.

The program tackles challenges faced by children who are labelled problematic or slow learners at school. It challenges this mindset through the power of music.  The foundation has helped young people find direction in their lives.

We invite you to join us in supporting the foundation during Jazz Appreciation Month by sharing your memories of Moses Molelekwa and help raise much needed funding for his foundation on this link: https://gogetfunding.com/how-i-remember-moses-molelekwa-birthday-tribute/

Help us remember Moses Taiwa Molelekwa by sharing your tribute moments by posting your picture and a copy of your favourite copy of his album or link to his song on social media and tag us with the following hashtags.

#HowIRememberMosesMolelekwa

#4everjazzsa

#MosesMoleekwaArtsFoundation

#JazzAppreciationMonth

On the 17th April on Moses Molelekwa’s birthday – A selected number of 20 jazz artist will pay tribute to Moses Molelekwa with a live stream performance broadcast from 16h00 on Zoom Webnar to Youtube, facebook ,Twitter and Instagram. Be sure to watch this sterling lineup.

APRIL – JAZZ APPRECIATION MONTH (JAM)

A month created by UNESCO to annually celebrate the extraordinary heritage and history of jazz. The April activities are a lead up to the celebration of International Jazz Day on the 30th April.

JAM – It is intended to stimulate the current jazz scene and encourage people of all ages to participate in the jazz culture and arts by:

  • To study music
  • Attend concerts
  • Listen to jazz on radio, tv
  • Stream and download jazz music online
  • Read books on jazz and its creators
  • Participate in conversations
  • Support your favourite jazz artists and more….

Remember Jazz Unites – Jazz Serves – Jazz Loves!

With the Coronavirus pandemic resulting in lockdowns and disrupting lives, careers and income for artists worldwide, we at 4everJazz would like to emphasis the need to practice social distancing, staying home and safe until we overcome this illness.

April is Jazz Appreciation Month, so as we are confined to our homes during this period, we have an opportunity to support our jazz artists by listening to their music, watching their performances online, engaging them on social media to show we care. We can also read books and learn about jazz, watch documentaries and movies, have conversations and keep sharing the love and appreciation of this music with others.

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It’s official, 4everJazz in collaboration with Soul Traveller Tours have curated a trip for Jazz lovers to the mother of all festivals, The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival 2020. From April 28th – May 6th. Expect good times, authentic experiences with locals, soul-stirring jazz and world-renowned food. 

I Nothemba Madumo will be your travel companion and adventure mate for this exciting experience to the birthplace of jazz. Lets go and have a blast.
For bookings and all the details just click here. 4everJazz In New Orleans https://tri.ps/4everjazzinNewOrleans

Its a limited space – First come First Served

Who in their right mind leaves the glorious, sunny weather of Johannesburg and heads to New York City in the middle of winter? Well I and several Jazz crazy humans from around the world did just that last week.

4everJazz was thrilled to be invited to the Jazz Congress 2020 which took place on January 13th – 14th at the Jazz at the Lincoln Center. Organised by Jazz at Lincoln Center and JazzTimes, the Jazz Congress bring together artists, media and industry leaders in the global jazz community to exchange ideas in order to nurture and grow the jazz community. This happens through a series of workshops, panels and networking opportunities, all geared to expanding the audience for jazz, a goal which is at the core of what we do at 4everJazz. Attendees include presenters, artists, managers, agents, journalists, radio programmers and other jazz professionals.

The Jazz Congress event happens during NYC Winter JazzFest, the city’s most talked about jazz event that took place from January 8th – 18th this year. So you can imagine the heavenly feeling of being in the company of jazz artists and practitioners one admires and is a big fan of.

Arriving on the Friday, we hit the ground running by catching a performance, just in time of “Spiritual Sounds and The Jazz Age”, The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis featuring two of its most acclaimed originals: Victor GoinesUntamed Elegance and Chris Crenshaw’s God’s Trombones, at Jazz at the Lincoln Center. I got to interview Chris Crenshaw the following day for my radio show “The Urban Jazz Experience” on MetroFM, (Watch out for the podcasts coming soon). By the way, we love the orchestra for immortalising the South African Jazz Song book with their performances around the world.

Soon after that, my friend and companion for the evening Jerry Mpufane, South African Tourism Hub Head for USA and Canada, got into the famous Dizzy’s Club and caught a performance by Soulful vocalist Brianna Thomas and her band, whose performance was a review of their new album “Everybody knows”. We stayed on for the next show which featured the awesome vocalist Charles Turner with pianist Sean Mason, bassist Noah Jackson, drummer Henry Conerway III, brilliant trombonist Jeffery Miller, and alto saxophonist Christopher McBride. By 1:00 am local time, my jetlag couldn’t handle it and I called it a night.

Day 2 was a marathon and an exciting day of exploring the NYC Winter JazzFest. Daytime was filled with work, recording artist interviews and exploring Manhattan’s bustling lifestyle clad in the warmest clothes I could fit in my luggage. Walking in NYC is quite a thing, no wonder songs are written about it. The Winter JazzFest had 20 events over 11 days, with 150 performances spread over 11 venues in Manhattan and Brooklyn. We were clearly spoilt for choice, only limited by distance and time. With some of the acts one wants to see billed at the same time, it was a tough choice. My most anticipated show was our very own Nduduzo Makhathini’s premier show, as Blue Notes first South African signed artist. He had the room spellbound performing songs with his wife and musical partner Omagugu Makhathini from his upcoming album, “Modes of Communication – Letters from the Underworlds”. He sure made a mark as a string of people wanted a moment with him after the performance. It was also great seeing some of Africa’s artists based in New York come and see him perform, including Aaron Rimbui.

Other performances of the night that I enjoyed was saxophonist Lakecia Benjamin, presenting “Pursuance” The Music of the Coltranes. She sure had more of a Miles Davis attitude and look for her show. This is where I looked to my left and pleasantly found myself standing next to bassist Ben Williams, who I had last seen at the Blue Note at Sea in 2019. He has a new album coming out in February ” I Am A Man”. I also got to see part of a show by an almost Stacy Kent-look and sound alike Kat Edmonson. Next up was Terrace Martin‘s Grey Matter show, immediately followed by the always hilarious Robert Glasper‘s Electric Trio, which Terrace joined. Day 3 Sunday was mostly rest and more interviews recorded for the radio show as the Jazz Congress was to begin the next day.

The two days of the Jazz Congress were the most insightful and educational jazz experience as the panel discussions I managed to attend were of real importance to me and the work I do for jazz. Kaisha Johnson co-founder of Women of Color in the Arts did a fantastic job facilitating a session about Women in JazzTown Hall – building equity, inclusion, trust and respect across the jazz community. I was impressed by the added contribution by men in this plenary session also providing solutions. The incredible quote that came out of this discussion was “Women don’t need jazz, jazz needs women” as well as “Until women become decision makers, nothing will change”.

Kaisha Johnson
Camille Thurman, Sheila Jordan, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Kurt Elling

I also got to sit in discussions about ‘Jazz vocalists and their unique approach to singing and leading a group’ with Dee Dee Bridgewater, Kurt Elling and Sheila Jordan on the panel, facilitated by the versatile instrumentalist Camille Thurman. Dee Dee Bridgewater suggested vocalists should start thinking like a composer. I joined a workshop on ‘Building & Nurturing your Jazz Ecosystem’ where I shared how our “Jazz Clubs” in our townships, under the South African Jazz Appreciators Association (SAJAA), have over the years played a key role in supporting a healthy jazz ecosystem and building a vibrant jazz community around the country.

As you can expect a panel discussion titled “Jazz Radio’s role in an era of music abundance” would be of great interest to me. Top jazz radio executives shared their strategies and actions of tight programming, expansion into digital and how radio remains important to music discovery and artist development.

The hightlight of the panel discussions was the topic that was important for the African continent. “Africa: The Past & Future of Jazz”. The fact that the much loved singer Somi of (Salon Africana) was facilitating this discussion was exciting already. Together with Nduduzo Makhathini, Meklit Hadero of (The Nile Project/Yerba Buena Center for the Arts) and our very own Brenda Sisane of KayaFM (who is the organiser for International Jazz day hosted by Cape Town in 2020), all shared their views on the continents past and future contributions to jazz as well as addressing the growing cultural exchange across the continents. Nduduzo Makhathini’s presence in NYC being a prime example of the hunger and appreciation to hear different jazz sounds and language from Africa. I so wish there was support of projects of this nature from our arts and culture department, as it would be invaluable for our legacy and culture marketing.

With so much going on and being discussed during the Jazz Conference, I needed to remember to record interviews with various artists I encountered including trumpeter Sean Jones, Saxophonist & Singer Braxton Cook, Singer Aimée Allen, Radio host Simon Rentner, Kenyan pianist Aaron Rimbui, Vocal & Bass Duo Acute Inflections, Drummer Kassa Overall, not forgetting Nduduzo Makhathini on his Blue Note label and NYC experience.

Do check out the recorded, streamed panel discussions of the Jazz Congress on the Jazz at Lincoln Center facebook account, all are very interesting.

There is so much more to tell about my week in NYC but so little time. I certainly would do what it takes to have this experience again next year, even though winter is not my favourite season. Seton Hawkins, thank you for the invitation. My first New York jazz trip was certainly the greatest way to kick off 2020 immersed in jazz culture & lifestyle. #HappyPlace

In celebrating the end of 2019 and ushering-in 2020 in style, 4everjazz in partnership with Toad bury Hall Country Hotel is hosting a Jazz in the Park family event on New Years Eve the 31st December 2019.

In the magnificent spacious gardens and lawns of Toad Bury Hall 5 star Country Hotel, jazz music, fun and pleasure will be the order of the day. Featuring music by top star female vocalists Spha Mdlalose and Nothende, the popular and sort after jazz DJ’s from The Acid Jazz Connoisseurs stable, together with Metro FM’s Jazz show host Nothemba Madumo, will keep jazz lovers on their feet and fulfilled.

There is no better way to wrap up a year of twists and turns than with family, friends and loved ones in a safe and leisure activities filled venue offering food and drinks in abundance for sale for only R200 entrance fee.

Tickets are available online by booking them on https://www.howler.co.za/events/jazz-in-the-park-480f

Attendees can bring their precious kids who will have plenty activities to keep them occupied. It will be free entry for children under the age of 12 years, and everyone is welcome to bring picnic equipment like blankets and chairs to relax to while protected by shades from trees in the gardens and lawns.

Our partner, Toadbury Hall is excited to be the hosting venue for its first Jazz in the Park and due to their excellent location they are very sure that this will soon become a regular event on the jazz calendar. Toadbury Hall Country Hotel is a mere twenty-minute drive from both Johannesburg and Pretoria and a 5-minute drive from Lanseria International Airport. Toadbury Hall prides itself on hosting events that create lasting memories for all our guests. 

The gates will open at 08:00 and the show will kick off from 10:00 until 18:00 giving attendees time to drive back home or elsewhere to welcome the New Year by midnight.

ABDULLAH IBRAHIM

Abdullah Ibrahim the legendary jazz musician will be back in South Africa with his US band Ekaya, to perform two concerts in Johannesburg and Cape Town for the Thabo Mbeki Presidential Library benefit concert. He will be treating his fans to a repertoire from his recent album The Balance.

The Benefit concerts are hosted to raise funds in aid of the construction of the Thabo Mbeki Presidential Library (TMPL) aimed to be an African Centre of Excellence in Learning, Research and Discourse for the transformation of Africa. The Library will benefit scholars, intellectuals, students and the general public and will amongst other things, be an accessible place for African and global citizens to engage with issues of the African liberation struggle and how Africa can attain a Renaissance. The concerts will be on the 27th November at the Lyric Theatre in Johannesburg, and on the 29th November at the Life Church Sea point in Cape Town

I will be talking to Abdullah Ibrahim on Sunday 17th November during my radio show “The Urban Jazz Experience” on MetroFM about the significance of the (TMPL), his participation and the upcoming performance.

The last time I spoke to Abdullah Ibrahim was in June 2016 when he was due to perform with Hugh Masekela for a tribute to jazz legend Kippie Moeketsi and The Jazz Epistles. This turned out to be one my favourite interviews as it was so insightful about the life and music philosophy of Abdullah Ibrahim. “Ancient Tradition, New Relevance” Click on the links below for the full podcast of that conversation.

Abdullah Ibrahim
Abdullah Ibrahim
Abdullah Ibrahim
Abdullah Ibrahim
Abdullah Ibrahim

Roberto Fonseca

For anyone who attended the 2019 Standard Bank Joy of Jazz, like me, you are probably still basking in the afterglow of the incredible performances you experienced. But if you missed out on being part of the thousands who filled the various venues at the Sandton Convention Center, you will be pleased with my highlights package video of just a few of the performances that took place throughout the week of jazz mania in Johannesburg.

Here is an opportunity to have a peek at performances from Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at the Lincoln Center Orchestra, Marcus Wyatt and the ZAR Jazz Orchestra, Roberto Fonseca, The Jazz Unity, Etuk Ubong, Manu Kutche, Alexander Beets, KOH Mr Saxman, to name a few.

Highlights of Joy of Jazz week

We are truly grateful for a sterling lineup once again curated by the organisers, and especially the cultural exchange that happened between various jazz artists from different countries, in particular Wynton Marsalis and Jazz at the Lincoln Center for the grace of sharing their experience, wisdom and knowledge with young musicians and the public.

We can’t wait for next year!