Book now for RMB Jazz with Zoë Modiga and Plaisir

With “a Tribute to South African Jazz”, Rand Merchant Bank (RMB), an African Corporate and Investment Bank, continues its collaborative support for the creative economy.

Jazz enthusiasts can look forward to an exquisite evening celebrating the South African Jazz tradition, history and boundless future – and a new book South African Jazz Collection.

In collaboration with Plaisir Wine Estate, RMB will present aspects of the uniquely South African story of musical talent, hosted by one of the most exciting artists on the global stage today, the jazz chanteuse Zoë Modiga. Zoë will be accompanied by a stellar cast of special guests including Kevin Gibson (drums), John Hassan (percussion), Shane Cooper (double bass), Bokani Dyer (pianist), Cameron Ward (guitarist), Moonee Hermans (trumpeter), Mark Fransman (saxophonist), Steven Sokuyeka (trombonist) and Siya Makuzeni (vocalist).

Curated by well-known jazz musician (bassist, producer, arranger and public cultural programmer) Banda Banda and his creative partner, performer and composer Zoë, the evening is also meant to remind the country of its wealth of musical performance and storytelling traditions.

Integrated and acknowledged within the evening’s fare is a collection of original South African music compositions, South African Jazz Collection, compiled by music scholar Collin Miller. The book is a bold intervention in the South African and global jazz literature and performance texts, and the result of years of immersion in the history of South African Jazz – and influential artists and activists globally, from Herb Albert and Miles Davis to exports such as Hugh Masekela, Caiphus Semenya and Letta Mbulu.

RMB’s Creative Counsel Carolynne Waterhouse explains this initiative as a seamless and exciting collaboration of exceptional talent. “We are not artists, but as a leading financial services talent brand, we revere and reward exceptional talent. Authentic arts capture and communicate the spirit of the time, so we listen and learn from what artists say through their work,” says Waterhouse. “With decades of meaningful involvement across the arts we believe the broader role of the arts is to hold up a mirror to society.”

“Of course there is also the need to curate strong entertainment value, because neither the bank nor the artists will prosper without offering staff, clients and broader society the inspirational fuel that flows from the performing and visual arts. Artists create memories. We help to preserve them,” reminds Marc Ashwell, RMB’s Head of Integrated Marketing.

“It is a conversation between the canon and futurity,” says Modiga. “To an extent that contemporary composers and their compositions exist cheek by jowl with the classics, therefore the material is neo-classic and its composers, young masters, initiate in this grand tradition of jazz, in and of themselves.”    

Moses “Taiwa” Molelekwa’s Genes and Spirits is at home with Makwenkwe “MacKay” Davashe’s Lakushon’iLanga. McCoy Mrubata’s Bra Gib, Kesivan Naidoo’s Eclipse, are within the stream of jazz compositional canon that encompasses Strike Vilakazi’s Meadowlands, Shakes Mgudlwa’s  Morolong, an ode to that George Koch’s uncaged “Bird”, Kippie. Dudu Pukwana’s homage to one of modern jazz foundational forces, Christopher “Colombus” Ngcukana, a.k.a. Mra is one of the Cape jewels included here.          

The show will showcase some of the forgotten composers such as the guitar sauceres Allan Kwela and Phillip “Malombo Tabane, pianist Bheki Mseleku, and saxophonist Zakes Nkosi.

Jazz-themed art from RMB’s collection as well as selected photographs from Rafs Mayet, as seen in the book, will form the backdrop and entry points into the live show.

Date: 19 August 2022, 6pm for 7pm
Venue: Plaisir Wine Estate, Simondium, Western Cape
Tickets available from:

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