The Jazz Epistles, whose core consisted of Brand, Kippie Moeketsi, Jonas Gwangwa and Masekela, had made the first South African recording by black musicians, Jazz Epistle: Verse 1, in 1959; they won first place at the first Cold Castle Jazz Festival two years later. But when given the chance to support the cast of the popular King Kong musical (in which Makeba was the female lead), they jumped on board to tour England. Curiously, less than 500 copies of Jazz Epistle were originally pressed, despite the group's overwhelming popularity. Subsequent reissues have made up for that.
Jun 13, 2010
the jazz epistles - jazz epistle verse 1
barabara sounds sez:
What a group, what a sound, what a classic! All the way from 1960 and it still has the power to get you up and moving! Dollar Brand (aka Abdullah Ibrahim), Hugh Masekela, Jonas Gwangwa, Johnny Gertze, Makaya Ntshoko and Kippie "Morolong" Moeketsi. Listen and rejoice!
There's a great review of this album and the musicians — with some fantastic photos too — at Hub Pages.