Mazwai held the whole show together

RARELY does soul singer Thandiswa Mazwai disappoint when she takes to the stage to give her fans or music lovers doses of traditional Xhosa-influenced sounds.

RARELY does soul singer Thandiswa Mazwai disappoint when she takes to the stage to give her fans or music lovers doses of traditional Xhosa-influenced sounds.

In fact, I can't remember any of her performances that didn't inspire or emotionally arouse me. She reminds me of mama Busi Mhlongo, who you would swear is possessed when she is performing on stage.

Mazwai didn' t only steal the show at the Diamonds and Dorings Music Festival in Kimberley at the weekend, she also did what few musicians would dare.

When the sound system gave in Mazwai continued a capella, much to the excitement and appreciation of the crowd. She won the hearts of many in the crowd with hertraditional Xhosa music.

It was startling to hear Dr Victor singing more Bob-Marley songs than his own . The Shambala singer, who was performing in front of his home crowd, thrives on rehashing other artists' songs, though he has had many hits of his own over decades in the music industry.

Trumpeter Hugh Masekela's performance was a special occasion because he was still celebrating his 70th birthday with his fans. He even went on stage to cut the cake.

The annual festival was the main event of the city for the Easter weekend. A Free State derby soccer match between Free State Stars and Bloemfontein Celtic was another highlight of the festival.

The festival has been going on for almost a decade and the organisers have decided to incorporate other cultural activities to market the city.

Though Kimberley will not be hosting any matches during the Fifa World Cup, Bafana Bafana's opponents, Uruguay, will be based in the city.

The festival organisers have a long way to go, though, in organising cultural festivities of the magnitude of Macufe. For starters, a soccer match should not have been part of the festival activities.

It would be worth their while for the organisers to take lessons from the Mangaung group and have a typical and uniquely Kimberley gig, which will expose visitors to the culture of the area.

Music lovers, especially from Gauteng, generally like travelling to other cities and towns to explore, but there has to be something exciting when they get there. They don't just go to festivals in other areas for the sound because they hear them all the time in the comfort of their own province.

So tourism people in that area as well as the organisers have to offer something very special to lure Gautengers to their festival.

We definitely want more than the Big Hole and so may of those noisy township taverns.

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