In the arts, appellations such as legends, doyennes, divas and heirs tend to be utilized out of context. To an extent it has become a cliché and a handhold to describe contemporaries that are far from eminence. A tiny tattered lexicon defines a hero/heroine as a person who is admired for their courage. While on the search for yet another exhilarating experience, I was not crestfallen to break crepuscular light at a standard bearer of a simple, yet epic and dynamic event.
For the past nineteen years Moretele Park come Resort has hosted the Tribute to Heroes Concert where giants and prolific artists juncture. The thespians are of huge impact and have contributed their music as a tool for change, clarion calls and in other instances war- cries and lamentations. The concept was conceived by Sam Mahangwani and Leonard Sithole to show reverence to maestros that are in our midst.
Whilst trying to navigate the microcosmic rudiments of the concert, it emerged that the giants that grace the stage are presented with an award to inscribe and etch them into the abstract realm with a tangible token that values their efforts and dedication that they have displayed in their musical life expectancy.
I had been misled by misconceptions that concerts that are held at such venues are associated with jazz. Even to the communal citizens it is perceived as a jazz festival, but the repertory rebuts hearsay.
Here the happenings are made up of a motley collection of sounds that cater for listeners that move with space and time. They consume copious amounts of melodies that travel and manifest with the crowd and leave them inebriated by rhythm into the early hours of dawn.
Nostalgia opens the acts with a regress into an epoch of dance with sultry songs into the funky world of today. There is something of an ethereal aura in the atmosphere. While feeding on the crumbs of the wordless trumpet sections that bellowed hip swaying moments, the staying power of mellifluous and dulcet harmonies lingered in oscillation with an upbeat order.
As the percipient complexities conjured , new compositions delighted the hearers when Don Laka played a befitting homage to young pupils, that caused an uproar that rumbled across the current affairs platform.
The colossal sound of Jonas Gwangwa has made way for younger artists to render and lend their voices to tunes that are popular even in his golden years. Debutant to the concert and recipient of the Tribute Heroes Award, Wouter Kellerman improvised with simplicity and sophistication to cater for diverse audiences.
The inviting sounds of Hugh Masekela’s trumpet retained a crisp resonance with the thumping dark sound of foundation layer Fana Zulu, leading to the beginning of continuity. Nathi and Vusinova’s ingratiating voices held the audience spellbound.
At fold it became perceptible that this is by far one of a few concerts where audiences reciprocate the connection with musicians, who share the joy and invidious state in song and dance, making it an event that is the epitome of well-preparedness. Above all it is a concert worth percolating in our journeys of exploring sheer exhilaration.