Artist of the week: Phillip Sizwe Blose aka Pyramid

An actor, singer, composer and music producer Phillip Sizwe Blose aka Pyramid which his name is actually derived from ancient mysterious structures. So just like true pyramids which have been there for thousands of years, known for extending life through energy and frequencies kept on it, then Sizwe is keen to ensure that all his art forms mostly his music stays forever, heals and soothes life through his sorrowful and energetic lovely melodies.

Pyramid was born on the 28th January 1985 in KwaMashu Durban where he also started his primary education. He then later moved to Mayville Catocresto where he spent most of his life. While he was at a school called Ngwenya at Mayville he developed the love for music and started attending classes for music. Few years later then moved to Mayville secondary High where him and his friends started a Gospel Music Group called 6 Boys. He got audition in a cast called Ikwezi LeAfrika which had a popular stage play called Bhambatha KaMancinza. Sizwe was initially audition for a supporting role for chief Nhlonhlo and later scooped himself a leading role for King Bhambatha.

He eventually got auditioned by Mbongeni Ngema for Committed Artists which was having a popular stage play called Sing Africa Dance which was where he learnt a lot from making a music notes, acting and dancing. Whilst in that he then started recording his first album as a Gospel Artist where he released it which titled Ndikhusele under a record label called Ghetto Masters who was ran by Mandla Khwela and got signed by a record label called Sonke Records by Themba Ngcamu. He carried on working with Mbongeni Ngema doing shows like Sarafina and other things that were done by Committed Artists. That’s when he met Shaluza Max and Peter Ngobese, he worked with them where he did most of the vocals for Takalani Sesame and recorded his third album where he worked with Shaluza Max and Jaziel Brothers.

He carried on with acting and ended up joining Go-Big-Productions Agency where he got roles on overseas movies as an extra, another movies called Fact of the Stock as a Congolese King and other local movies by Durban Motion Pictures as most of those movies are still playing on Mzansi Magic. He is currently running his record label called Red Pyramids which has attracted young and fresh upcoming artists that have studied for music and with great talent. Amongst the big names he worked with is Jonas Gwangwa and once shared the stage with the likes of Hlengiwe Mhlaba, Sifiso Ncwane, Vuyo Mokoena and Lundi Tyamara.

The Current EP Titled: Usisthandwa Sam.

Arts meets tourism through storytelling at Africa’s Travel Indaba

The unveiling of a wall mural at the African Tourism Indaba 2019 represents a big step forward in driving the opportunities culture can bring to tourism.

The wall mural was unveiled by the South Africa’s Minister of Tourism, Derek Hanekom, following the opening of the trade floor at this year’s Africa’s Travel Indaba at the Durban International Convention Centre (Durban ICC) in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.

Speaking at the unveiling, Michelle Constant, a member of the South African Tourism (SA Tourism) board, says one of the great challenges for South Africans is unlocking the great potential of its’ extraordinary historical and present culture.

“If we think about the five pillars of tourism, one of these is cultural roots and through this we can drive creativity. Today’s unveiling of this mural is an opportunity for we to demonstrate this,” said Constant.

She adds that art is key to opening the door to science, technology and engineering. “We are seeing a move from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) to STEAM, which is the inclusion of art because art is key to opening those spaces.”

Four artists came together to create the mural, which took a year to plan and 10 days to create.

“It was very pressurised to get it done, but it was exciting to come together with the other artists and produce something we are very proud of,” says artist Samora Chapman.

He adds that while the mural represents Durban and its inclusive spaces, this extends to the broader South Africa. “It includes symbols of South Africa and represents an inclusive not exclusive space.”

Mural artist, Sphephelo Mnguni says it was a great experience being part of this mural and working with other artists. For him the mural welcomes the world and opens its’ arms to everyone. “I would like people to view it and feel a sense of unity, peace, love and positive vibes.”

Kev Seven, another of the artists involved has been a graffiti artist for 12 to 15 years. “This mural is significant not only because it is one of a kind, but because it is the first mural of this kind in the Durban ICC.”

Constant encouraged visitors to the Africa Travel Indaba 2019 to find the time to stand in front of the mural, take a selfie and share it to the world. “We need the rest of the world to acknowledge our extraordinary culture.”

Ladysmith Black Mambazo set to host the 1st Annual Cothoza Music Awards

Five time Grammy award winners and internationally acclaimed isicathamiya music icons, Ladysmith Black Mambazo will be hosting the first annual Isicathamiya awards, COTHOZA MUSIC AWARDS (COMA) . Cothoza Music Awards will be held on the 22nd of June 2019 at the Durban Playhouse.

The awards are part of Ladysmith Black Mambazo program called Ladysmith Black Mambazo Mobile Academy, an initiative aimed at reviving and developing Isicathamiya music with developing and established music groups who want to take their music to greatest heights .Through the program Ladysmith Black Mambazo runs master classes across the country and also discovered and developed talent on isicathamiya and indigenous music. Cothoza Music Awards will honor and acknowledge great contributions made by isicathamiya groups dating back from the era of Solomon Linda – who created a world classic song titled “Imbube” and also acknowledge the current isicathamiya artists who are the torch bearers of the this iconic music genre.
The event will be hosted in the beautiful city of Durban because of its historic significance and pivotal role in hosting Isicathamiya competitions and concerts over the years. Durban has become a breeding ground for budding and established Isicathamiya music artists. Durban is synonymous with showcasing isicathamiya music at traditional Isicathamiya venues like YMCA, Clermont Hostel and other Durban hostels inclusive of community halls around the city. This has been a trend dating back to the late 50’s whereby the legendary Ladysmith Black Mambazo have a historic attachment to the city of Durban since its founder, Professor Joseph Shabalala, started the group in Durban when it was formerly called Durban choir, later it was called Ezimnyama before it was finally called Ladysmith Black Mambazo .

Professor Shabalala is very happy that the awards are finally taking place since it has been his longtime dream for isicathamiya music to be recognized as a national music treasure and as a great cultural export.

COMA’s will be a series of a three day event happening at The Durban Playhouse featuring programs such as Cothoza Masterclass starting from 10:00 on the 19th June 2019 – which will have a panel of discussions about the evolution of isicathamiya. The second day shall be a thrilling programme of Isicathamiya Concert starting at 19: 00 will be held on 20th of June 2019. The line-up will include Ladysmith Black Mambazo sharing the stage with various Isicathamiya and accapela music groups.
The main event taking place on the 22nd of June 2019 which will be the awards ceremony will not only be honoring isicathamiya artists but also be a night filled with entertaining live performances on stage.
The Cothoza Music Awards (COMA) open call for entry to all qualifying Isicathamiya Music Groups is open for groups that have contributed in the growth and promotions of Isicathamiya Music genre. Entrants should have albums that were released from March 2014 to April 2019. The groups and participants will compete on categories ranging from Best Isicathamiya Album, Best Ushameni Album, Best Isikhwela Joe Album,Best Isicathamiya Female Group, Best Isicathamiya School Group, Best Sound Engineer, Best Producer, Best Isicathamiya Radio Show, Cothoza People’s Choice (song voted for by the public), Best Acapella Album (Gospel/Contemporary/AmaZion.), Best Styled Isicathamiya Group and Best Styled Acapella Group.

The nominating window is currently open and will close on 21 May 2019, 16H00. The nominated groups shall be unveiled on the 28th of May 2019 in Durban.

Application forms and detailed information is available on

#NewMusic: XCeeN Music #HereWeGoAgain

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