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All That (African) Jazz

My Kasi Music Festival

By Constance van Niekerk in SA
The young band we heard about in October 2014 is not so young anymore as they keep growing musically. They are at it again, this time for the noble reason of charity.

Soulful Mindz was founded in June 2014 by 21-year-old Sailas Mutambalika. Sailas is a very talented pianist, drummer and keyboard player who resides in Germiston with his parents and sister, Mary, who is a backing vocalist in the group.

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Soulful Mindz

As in many bands, the original members of the band have since moved on and been replaced by new members. S.M (Soulful Mindz) is no different, the current line-up is as follows: Sailas (Founder/ main keys), Vincent Mabunda (Manager/ second keys), Mr & Mrs Phahla (Vocal Coaches), Boholo (bass), Kevin (drummer) and the singers are Mary, Paul, Zanele, Dikeledi, Mahle and Siyabonga.

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Soulful Mindz in 2014

“The My Kasi Music Festival is an on-going event that focuses its strengths on addressing social community issues. The event will be touring around communities/ townships in Gauteng every two or three months tackling these issues using art and music as a medium to influence a positive change in these various locations,” says the event organiser and founder of Soulful Mindz, Sailas Mutambalika.

Sailas observes, “The event runs for the whole day featuring about 27 artists, that is, Poets, DJs, Dancers, Singers and motivational speakers. Soulful Mindz has shifted from just being a corporate band and has branched out into using our gifts to give back to the community, ‘ekasi’, by hosting events where all the proceeds go to charity.”

Some of the artists in the line up are Malawian born guitarist Chris Kele, Zimbabwean born Afro-Jazz Musician Maizon Tazvitya, Zimbabwean-born Poet and Writer Constance van Niekerk, Lesotho-born Jazz artist Khakheni Qebe, Soulful Mindz, just to mention a few. 

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Khakheni says that he is very excited, humbled and challenged to be part of this event, “This event is going to be a blessing to many young and upcoming artists and musicians in our society.” He also thanks Sailas and S.M for being innovative.

According to Sailas, at least 20% of what the event will make will go towards buying groceries for charity organisations around the Leondale area.

This is the first charity event that S.M has hosted, but will definitely not be the last.

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Maizoni Tazvitya and Soulful Mindz

“We realised that a lot of youngsters in our communities are falling into the trap of drug and alcohol abuse. There is a need for youth empowerment. And there is also a rise in rape cases and in teenage pregnancies. We as S.M in partnership with Lemo Keys Events would like to call upon the communities so we can work together in an effort to eradicate poverty and to bring awareness to the youth as to the dangers of negative living.”
“It’s time to touch one person at a time, eventually we are going to touch the world,” says Sailas.

The participants in the  shows are  all agreed  that  a noble cause deserves as much support as possible, especially from the corporate world. This is an opportunity for Non-Governmental Organisations to partner with communities for the betterment of people’s lives.  If you are in the East Rand or in Johannesburg, support this charity event by attending the shows. Patrons of the shows are also encouraged to bring something to give away. It’s almost winter, blankets are needed to give to the old and homeless, tinned food, clothes, diapers, shoes, socks and anything that can be spared.

The imminent show is an outdoor event and there will be secure parking and food sold on the site.

Allow me to borrow the words of former American President, John F. Kennedy, “Ask not what your country (community) can do for you, ask what you can do for your country (community).”

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Vincent (left) and Sailas

For more details contact Sailas Mutambalika on 061 066 9936

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About Editor

Constance van Niekerk is a South African-based Zimbabwean-born creative writer, poet, music lover, spoken word artist, freelance writer, blogger and educator. She has contributed to several anthologies and published her own collection, Echoes of My Heart: A Poetry Collection available for purchase on all Amazon Stores Worldwide. She is also Editor at ZimOnlineNews. Follow her on Twitter : @convanniekerk Connect with her on Facebook and Linkedin.

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Echoes of My Heart: A Poetry Collection by Constance van Niekerk

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