SA jazz legend’s albums reissued

first_img22 June 2007The long out-of-print recordings of South African vocalist Sathima Bea Benjamin, a key link between the American and South African jazz traditions, will be re-issued digitally throughout the upcoming year, along with never-before-released material.Originally from Cape Town, Benjamin is one of South Africa’s musical treasures, having established herself as a master interpreter of American jazz standards.Currently living in New York, she recorded 11 albums throughout her career, earning a Grammy nomination and recording with legendary figures such as Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, and her husband, Abdullah Ibrahim.Benjamin’s interpretations earned her a devoted audience and the highest praise of critics, with Jules Epstein of the Philadelphia Tribune writing: “There may be 10 great jazz singers alive today, and Sathima Bea Benjamin is unquestionably one.”In Jazztimes, Robin Kelley describes Benjamin as “South Africa’s greatest jazz singer and one of the best the world has ever known.”Her work in jazz and in support of the exiled African National Congress (ANC) during apartheid earned her the Order of Ikhamanga, South Africa’s highest civilian honour in the creative and performing arts, in 2004.This week, Benjamin digitally released Cape Town Love. The album, recorded during a return trip to her native South Africa, showcases Benjamin’s ability to infuse American jazz standards with Cape Town rhythms and scales.Cape Town Love features the pianistic talents of Henry February, a pioneer in the early Cape Jazz scene and mentor to major South African jazz figures, including Abdullah Ibrahim, Chris McGregor, and Benjamin herself.In October, Benjamin will celebrate her 71st birthday by digitally re-issuing A Morning in Paris, her long-lost 1963 recording with Duke Ellington, featuring Billy Strayhorn and Abdullah Ibrahim as pianists.The remainder of Benjamin’s catalogue, including the Grammy-nominated album Dedications, will be released by mid-2008.SouthAfrica.info reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

SA ‘busy tackling issues raised by IMF’

first_imgResolving the country’s electricity supply constraints;Increasing investment in infrastructure;Improving the regulatory environment;Stimulating development in agricultural;Growing the prospects for youth employment; andIntensifying support for small business development. 3 October 2013 South Africa is already busy tackling the issues raised by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its latest country report, the National Treasury said on Tuesday. The IMF said in the report that, while a weak global economy was not helping South Africa to lift its growth to the levels where it could start making a dent on unemployment, the country had to focus on tackling domestic constraints to growth. In particular, the IMF urged South Africa to move forward with the structural reforms outlined in the country’s National Development Plan (NDP) in order to boost growth and create jobs for a growing population. The issues raised by the IMF report “are already captured in government policies and programmes,” the Treasury said in a statement, noting that the Cabinet, during a three-day meeting in August, had agreed on a number of measures to reignite economic growth in South Africa. These measures were “in part informed by the recognition that the South African economy can no longer rely heavily on the global economy to reignite growth and create job opportunities for the millions of unemployed South Africans”, and included: The Cabinet had agreed to focus on speeding up the implementation of domestic plans to grow the economy in an inclusive way, as well as to seize opportunities in the wider southern African region. “One of these issues is the implementation of the National Development Plan (NDP), which government believes will make a significant contribution to the longer term effort to address both historical and new challenges confronting the South African economy.” The Treasury noted that tackling issues around South Africa’s political economy, as well improving the performance of the country’s public sector, “is an ongoing process requiring a wide range of measures and interventions”. Steps were being taken to improve labour relations in key sectors such as mining, while the government was strengthening its administrative structures and processes in order to achieve better service delivery and public accountability. “We remain committed to fiscal consolidation and the need to rebuild fiscal space,” the Treasury said, adding that South Africa’s fiscal policy “remains grounded by the three principles of counter-cyclicality, debt sustainability, and inter-generational equity.” SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Krish Patel bags National sub-junior under-16 title, Gargi bosses Vipasha in girls’ final

first_imgKrish Patel confirmed his supremacy in the National sub-junior Championship here on Saturday with a marauding 6-0, 6-1 victory over Denim Yadav in the boys’ under-16 final.Not dropping a single set throughout the tournament, Krish was a heavy favourite for the marquee clash but a fight was expected from a gifted stroke-maker Denim, who took down seed two Sushant Dabbas in the quarter-final.However, the sixth seed was on a different level altogether in the final match where his strong ferocious forehands, coupled with ease at finding winners, gave no chance to his rival on the day.Denim looked confident when he entered the court for the opening set but was handed an early setback as Krish broke his first serve.The confidence in Krish’s game was apparent as he played an aggressive game from the word go. Hitting volleys on appropriate occasions to charging Denim’s weak second serve from inside the baseline, gave no breathing room to the 15-year-old boy from Uttar Pradesh.The only gleam of a hope came for Denim after dropping 10 games on the trot which included conceding the first set 6-0 — when he secured his first point from his serve to make it 4-1.It turned out to be just an anomaly in the match as the Ahmedabad boy clinched the match by breaking Denim’s serve 6-1.”I always knew that if I beat Divesh (Gahlot who was seeded 1) in semi-finals, winning the final won’t be much of a tough ask. My strategy was to play an aggressive game and everything went accordingly to plan,” Krish told Mail Today.advertisementIn the girls’ under-16 final, Vipasha Mehra’s dream run in the competition finally came to a halt after she lost to Gargi Pawar 6-4, 6-3 in a lopsided encounter.The result came as a surprise given Vipasha’s glaring form in the tournament that included triumphing higher-ranked opponents such as Bhakti Parwani (first seed) and junior Grand Slam player Sanjana Sirimalla.Gargi played a top-notch game where she engaged in long-rally game with Vipasha who looked a pale shadow of a player that played a flawless game in the earlier rounds. The Tamil Nadu girl played some fine winners but was also flummoxed by the strong forehand returns and topspin strokes by Gargi leading to numerous unforced errors.After winning the first set 6-4, the Pune girl was cruising home for a win with a massive lead of 4-1.However, Viapsha sparked a comeback by breaking Gargi’s serve and then clinching another point to make it 4-3. But she failed to sustain the momentum as her 15-year-old compatriot continued to play a big forehand to perfection to win the set and the match.The victory would mean a lot to Gargi as her tennis career remains in dark due to family’s financial crisis after she lost her father in an accident a year and a half ago.The under-16 champions old still desires to achieve her dream of being a professional tennis player.”I always want to be a professional tennis player and that feeling got stronger after this title. Last year my form wasn’t good; now I win under-16 in my first year in the category. Couldn’t ask for more,” Gargi said.Under-14 finals too saw one-sided encounter as talented Udit Gogoi cruised past a clueless Aman Dahiya 6-1, 6-4 While, seed two Renne Singh trumped Vaishnavi Adkar 7-5, 6-2.last_img read more