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Bhekani Memela

Umlazi, South Africa

Bhekani Memela is a singer and choir director from Umlazi, South Africa, a township located near Durban. He started his music career in the late 80's to early 90's as a member of African Voices (formerly known as Young Voices). Both groups had records released by Emhlangeni/ Rainbow Records with huge airplay on the radio. In 2004, Bhekani formed the group “Sinamuva” with whom he recorded on several of the first Songs Around The World, adding lyrics in Zulu to the original songs. In December 2009, Bhekani traveled to Madrid with Sinamuva to perform with the Playing For Change Band at the Caja Mágica.

How we met:

We met with Bekhani in Umlazi in 2006. A few weeks after sending him the songs to rehearse the choir arrangements we arrived in Durban where we met him for the first time. Bhekani took us to the house of his brother where they where practicing the songs. We came in a little room where the choir was , singing along with the cd we had sent them. We’ll never forget the moment we could hear for the first time their arrangements on the song. The vocals in Zulu definitely added something special to our Songs Around The World.

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