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IC B. (icberry)
Reviewed on 12/29/2008...
(An Image of the Album cover: "http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v491/atasteofblue/?action=view¤t=amandla.jpg")
Amandla is the Xhosa word for "power".
Their Azanian/South African name, Amandla Poets, combines Amandla with Poets, as writers of words in meter, and was coined by the band founder and leader, Dumile Vokwana. Vokwana is a native of Guguletu township bordering Capetown, South Africa, a town whose name itself means, "our pride". His partner and ensemble frontwoman Eloise Burrell, is a native of Texas, whose history as an activist brought her to a love of South African music, even was Vokwana, from his homeland, resonated to American R&B.
Their style is furious, catchy and almost unclassifiable. They call it "[S]outh African Mbaqanga reggae". Mbaqanga translates roughly as "township jive" - the sound popularized by Mahlathini and the Mahotella Queens. The band's reggae roots can be traced back to Africa rather than Jamaica. Stir in some R&B grit and soul, and... Make it So is the result.
Amandla Poets believe that music has always been a thread of communication and reinforcement for a people who strive to control their own destiny. This is the power of Makube Njalo: Make it So.
You can read more about Amandla Poets, and hear sample of their music, here: http://www.associatedentertainment.com/aec/Music/World-music/Amandla-Poets