Musical dialogue between SA’s maskandi and Mozambican marrabenta on the road

In association with Concerts SA and Pro Helvetia, Teka Music presents Vukazithathe on the Maskandi meets Marrabenta Tour.
Multi-instrumentalist, composer and singer Bhekisenzo Cele aka Vukazithathe is bringing his powerful maskandi music to two of southern Africa’s most legendary music festivals – Azgo (Mozambique) and Bushfire (Swaziland). In between those performances, he will be doing a busking tour throughout the birthplace of maskandi: KwaZulu-Natal.
With a strong will and ability to differentiate himself in a highly competitive and populated music scene, Vukazithathe sings, plays bass guitar, guitar, concertina, and improvises on violin and harmonica. A veteran of the south coast KwaZulu-Natal music scene, Vukazithathe’s performances are well known for powerful energy and his great knack for improvisation.
Vukazithathe will be joined by prolific, multifaceted Mozambican percussionist and drummer, Texito Langa. Together, they will be creating a bridge and dialogue between Mozambican and South African culture.
The Maskandi meets Marrabenta Tour aims to develop the collaboration between these two highly skilled and experienced musicians. The project aspires to create a sustainable bridge/dialogue between Mozambican and South African culture through creating a fusion between two strains of very unique music styles that are ubiquitous in the respective countries.
Due to the proximity of the two countries and resident populations, culture has always been exchanged through migration and migrant labour systems, as well as sharing in language and music. Currently, this cultural exchange is happening in the space of contemporary music, an avenue for these two older styles to connect and explore their shared origins, with the possibility to create something fresh.
The project further aims to neutralise xenophobic sentiments through creating an understanding and celebration of similarities and kinship between the respective countries, rather than dwelling on differences.
Raised by parents who both played guitar, maskandi music runs in Bhekisenzo Cele aka Vukazithathe’s blood. A practitioner of maskandi music (modern-day Zulu folk), Bhekisenzo has suffered many personal hardships that have hindered his progress in his music, but this has never stopped him from pouring his artistry into composing and recording albums. In 2012 he wrote and recorded Anibakhuzeni, an album where he plays all the instruments and sings, a true testament to his vision and genius.
2014- present has seen Vukazithathe’s music spread outside of KwaZulu-Natal, with him playing at a festivals and venues through South Africa, shows in the SADC region, as well as shows in Europe and UK. Through his collaboration with younger artists such as Spoek Mathambo and DJ Spoko, he formed the quartet Fantasma, which saw the Maskandi sound spread to new ears. Vukazithathe is poised to release his new album in September 2017.
Texito Langa’s versatility knows no boundaries. He has done and still does a remarkable amount of work covering many genres. He has just finished recording Ddums for the upcoming album of pop artist Devin Howell, and his project Mighty Vibration released the reggae album entitled Introspective (December 2012). Texito has been active as well with bands, DJs and other artists such as Adamu da Silva, 340ml, Gazelle, Charlie Summerfield, Dino Morane, Mapumba, Monique Helenberg, Daniel Eppel and Umtwakhazi, to name but a few.
Vukazithathe’s Maskandi meets Marrabenta Tour is supported by Concerts SA through the Music Mobility Fund, a funding mechanism which offers opportunities for South African musicians to undertake live music tours. Additional support is provided by Ant funding from Pro Helvetia.
Concerts SA is a joint South African/Norwegian live music development project housed within the SAMRO Foundation. Concerts SA receives financial, administrative and technical support from the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, SAMRO, the SAMRO Foundation and Concerts Norway. Working with musicians, promoters, venue owners and audiences, and providing support to the sector through research and skills development for music professionals, the project aims to build a vibrant and viable live music circuit in southern Africa. It also aims to develop an interest in and appreciation of live music by showcasing music performances and conducting workshops at schools. For more information please visit our website, follow @ConcertsSA on Twitter at or like us on Facebook at
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Monday 22nd May – Friday 26th May – Daily workshops and performances in and around Durban, Pietermaritzburg and Kwazulu-Natal south coast (6 in total)

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