Saturday, May 6, 2017

Always Welcome: Ladysmith Black Mambazo and "Rain Rain Beautiful Rain"

Today's random song is by Ladysmith Black Mambazo, a South African male choral group. Made world-famous by their collaboration with Paul Simon on his Graceland album in the 1980s, they were formed by Joseph Shabalala in 1960 and are one of South Africa's most prolific recording groups. Shabalala formed Ladysmith Black Mambazo out of his family after having a dream in which he heard traditional Zulu harmonies (called isicathamiya). They became so good that they were forbidden to enter isicathamiya competitions after winning a number of them. The group currently comprises a number of Shabalala's sons, cousins and close friends, The group is very socially active, particularly in teaching young South African Zulu children about their music and culture through the Ladysmith Black Mambazo Foundation. You can find this song, Rain Rain Beautiful Rain, on their 2004 album The Very Best.