Jazz at the 40th National Arts Festival #1: Hugh Masekela


This year 2014 sees the National Arts Festival celebrating its 40th anniversary. As usual the National Arts Festival includes the Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Festival, in JazzE’s opinion, the only pure jazz festival in the South Africa. Today we publish the first of a series of 38 articles on the acts that you can see as part of this annual jazz festival.


National Arts Festival Logo
National Arts Festival, Grahamstown, South Africa

Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Festival Artist Profile #1:
Hugh Masekela

Hugh Masekela (photo by Brett Rubin)
Hugh Masekela (photo by Brett Rubin)

In the same year that the National Arts Festival celebrates its 40th year, this South African music legend celebrates his 75th birthday. Born in 1939, Hugh Masekela took up the trumpet at the age of 14, his first trumpet given to him by Father (later Arch-Bishop) Trevor Huddleston. After a Manhattan Brothers tour of South Africa in 1958, Masekela went on to join the orchestra of King Kong, a South Afriucan musical about a young boxer.

In his career, Hugh Masekela has become world-renowned as a Fluegelhornist, trumpeter, singer, band leader and composer with over 40 albums to his name. He has been awarded a national honour, the Order of Ikhamanga by president Jacob Zuma in 2010.
He has recorded with a range of musicians including Fela Kuti & Herp Albert, and performed with an untold number of music greats. He performed with U2 on their 360 World Tour at the FNB Stadium.

At this year’s festival Masekela will perform alongside Randal Skippers (keyboards/vocal), Cameron Ward (guitar/vocal), Fana Zulu (bass), Lee-Roy Sauls (drums/vocal) and Godfrey Mgcina (percussion/vocal).

Hugh Masekela In Concert at the Guy Butler Theatre at 19:00 on 12 July 2014. Tickets are R130.

Etienne Shardlow

Etienne Shardlow

Etienne is a proud lover of South African jazz, and host of the weekly JazzE Radio Show on Bakgat Radio. He works as an IT Service Management consultant and trainer.
Etienne Shardlow

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