In the last mixtape we commemorated Women’s Day by selecting a variety of songs which focused on women and issues affecting women in South Africa. While working on that selection we thought it would be fitting to compile a further mixtape which features some of the women’s voices which have formed part of the South African soundscape since the 1950s. Our initial aim was to select songs by twenty women singers but we soon realised that our task would be easier if we extended our latitude and made way for two mixtapes, rather than one. So this mixtape features the first 20 South African women singers in this two-tape series.
Songs chosen do not follow any particular theme, rather we chose singers and then selected songs by those singers which we think showcase their voices. We include some early veterans of the South African popular music scene (Miriam Makeba, Nancy Jacobs, and Letta Mbulu) and some who appeared on the music scene in the 1970s and 1980s (Margaret Singana, Sathima Bea Benjamin, Edi Niederlander, Laurika Rauch, Rene Veldsman – of Via Afrika, Lesley Rae Dowling, Brenda Fassie, Tara Robb – of The Spectres, Jennifer Ferguson, Heather Mac – of Ella Mental and Busi Mhlongo).
We also feature several more recent singers, who released their first recordings in the 21st Century: Simphiwe Dana, Karen Zoid, Zolani Mahola – of Freshlyground, Shannon Hope, Tailor (Anna Wolf) and Julia Church.
Enjoy your weekend listening and take time to find out more about those singers on this mixtape who you have not previously heard or heard of. There are some interesting stories to be discovered …
- Babhemu – Busi Mhlongo
- Isiphiwo Sam – Margaret Singana
- Mahlalela – Letta Mbulu
- Ndiredi – Simphiwe Dana
- Windsong – Sathima Bea Benjamin
- Meadowlands – Nancy Jacobs & Her Sisters
- Pata Pata– Miriam Makeba
- Weekend Special – Brenda & the Big Dudes
- Hey Boy – Via Afrika
- (See Yourself) Clowns – Ella Mental
- Teddy Bear – The Spectres
- Aeroplane Jane – Karen Zoid
- I’d like – Freshlyground
- Shiloh – Julia Church
- Ancient Dust – Edi Niederlander
- Suburban Hum – Jennifer Ferguson
- The Spaniard – Lesley Rae Dowling
- Kinders Van Die Wind – Laurika Rauch
- Daylight – Shannon Hope
- Where The Boys Are – Tailor