By Edward Tsumele
If you were looking for someone to emerge and who could sing beautiful soulful music in xiTsonga, she is it that you are looking for.
The mainly love ballads in this EP are exciting to the ear, and if you are not proficient in the language do not worry as this music will definitely connect with your own soul. The texture of the songs on this album is smooth and not harsh to the ears. If you grasp the beautiful Xitsonga language with its nuances that are well captured in this smooth EP from a fresh young talent from Pretoria, the better. That way you will enjoy this debut musical rendition from a fresh young talent fully. The EP will take you to the heavens and back. When someone sent me the EP, I played it several times, and it appeared as if each time I played this EP simply titled : Murandziwa, the thought of love lingered in my head for quite sometime. Murandziwa, which means my love in xiTsonga, is a beautiful piece of music, and this should set the tone for a smooth release of her debut album whenever the artists feel this is the right time for it.
In short I found myself excited about this music, not only because it is a far departure from the choking noise passing for music these days in the country. And please do not get me wrong, some of the current sounds are quite pretty, especially in the current popular genres of Amapiano, Gqom and Hi Hop, but quite honestly some of the sounds do not deserve the effort the artists put into them..
But who is this new artist I am raving about?
I am talking about vocalist and recording artist Solace Can. Just forget about her unsual name for now and concentrate on her music.
Her debut EP is soulful music delivered flawlessly in xiTsonga. I know xiTsonga comes beautifully when sung with genuine passion and with integrity to the language, especially the soul genre of music as it seems to blend so well, into the cultural ethos of the language.. However it comes out even more beautifully when sung by someone with a good voice for it such as this artist, Solace Can.
Murandziwa (EP) by Solace can is a beautiful piece of work. Period. The artist also comes from good music stork. She is the daughter of drummer Anikki ‘Swangies’ Maswanganye , the sensational jazz drummer from Soshanguve, Pretoria.. Now for all the years I have known Swangies, from the time when she led an all female band Art Ensemble Ladies in Jazz that was a feature of jazz festivals and concerts during the height of live music, particularly contemporary jazz in South Africa in the 2000s, Swangies has always been consistent in her career and in everything to do with elevating the status of female artists in South Africa. .
After all ,Swangies is the founder of the popular festival titled Vavasati Festival, which takes place annually at Sate Theatre Theatre during August. Vavasati for those uninitiated, means women in xiTsonga. And in recent weeks Swangies inboxed me to say she has started yet another all female group, that she leads, and this time, a gospel outfit. Wel that is a story for another day.
What I am saying is to suggest that it is perhaps not a coincidence that Solace Can, has come up with a mature sound, after all she is Swangies’ daughter. Must have been mentored well musically by her mother and the other female artists Swangies has performed with over the years.
And If you think I am the only one, read the following review by a fan who sent me this text anonymously in my inbox about Solace Can’s Murandziwa EP.
“This is her first recorded release and what grabbed my attention and interest about this EP was getting to listen to Afro-jazz, soulful Jazz in xiiTsonga. It is a beautiful, soothing engineered project, with songs that flow well from each other. This whole EP gives me a tangible pick up key influence of Judith Sephuma and Zonke.
It’s quite hard to pick a favourite between Hloniphani and Indlela.
Indlela is the only track in IsiZulu, but it flows so easily with the rest. It is not a stand-alone track. I see it making it on so many wedding playlist.
The theme of this project is love, respect and humanity. I am an advocate of music adopting a cause. Solace Can did just that with this EP. She is reminding us to love, respect for our elders and seeking guidance and blessings from them.
Indeed music is a universal language, do have a listen and share your opinions and thoughts,” here says anonymous reviewer of Solace Can’s Murandziwa project.
To listen go to https://open.spotify.com/album/6XktqoBcOs2oabKToERfQU…