The Namibian (Windhoek)

30 July 2012

Namibia: Countdown to the Windhoek Jazz Festival Begins

To the delight of Namibian jazz fans, the Windhoek Jazz Festival organisers announced on Friday that South Africans Lira and Salaelo Selota will be the main acts at this year's festival.

Battle of the bands winner, Shishani Vranckx, is the second headlining act to feature alongside Lira.

Selota's music style is influenced by the traditional singing and dancing of the gold mine's migrant workers amongst whom he lived, the Pedi melodies with which he grew up and the jazz he heard at Kippie's Jazz Club where he was a cleaner. The award winning artist studied jazz guitar at the FUBA Academy.

Lira was born Lerato Molapo in the Daveyton township in Johannesburg's East Rand. Her name translates to "love" in Sesotho and she speaks five languages. She is a multi-platinum selling and award winning Afro-Soul vocalist who refers to her music as "a fusion of soul, funk, elements of jazz and African."

Speaking at the launch, Windhoek Mayor, Elaine Trepper appealed for more support for artists and also expressed the city's commitment in ensuring that the Windhoek Jazz Festival grows each year. She further praised the event and predicted it's continued success. "The success of this event therefore is expected to continue surpassing all expectations as it continues to mature to an event of significant magnitude for its scale and positive contribution to the community as a whole."

The Namibian up-and-coming acts who were chosen by the public through an SMS competition are: Dinise, Chillin in the park as well as the Pulpit Band. Established acts who also had the honour of being selected by the public are Lize Ehlers, Adora, Major 7's who hail from Rehoboth as well the Ugly Creatures.

The festival will take place at the Hage Geingob Stadium on November 3. Tickets will be available at Computicket outlets as from July 30.

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