UKZN Music students Mr Charles Mdakane, Mr Phuti Mofokeng and Mr Sibusiso Shabalala performed together in the band, Iza Ngoma, at a concert in Hammarsdale.

The concert – held in association with Concerts SA, Seaman’s Corner and iSupport Music Business – was part of the Concerts SA Venue Circuit that aims to foster a love and support for live music in communities, as well as anchor small and medium sized venues in urban and rural Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, and the Western Cape.

Iza Ngoma was formed late in 2016 when bassist Mdakane, trumpet player Mofokeng and pianist Shabalala got together sharing a common interest and resonance in musical preferences.

The three spent hours in the Music discipline practice rooms unravelling, jamming, and immersing themselves in sound, mostly South African jazz. They eventually decided to start performing on campus and for the wider public.

The band plays a variety of music besides jazz which they are studying.

‘We are focused on getting our music out there by performing live as much as possible, while developing and composing music. Our music addresses pertinent matters which all members of society can relate to,’ said Mdakane.

‘Our music is influenced by many legendary South African composers, including Herbie Tsoali, Themba Mkhize, Busi Mhlongo, Moses Molelekwa and Ndikho Xaba. The sound is a mix of African jazz, kwaito and dance music, with thought provoking lyrics in isiZulu, Sesotho and English,’ he said.

Words: Melissa Mungroo