Saturday, July 1st
6:30 pm PDT (Early Show)
The Royal Room*
Hailing from uMgungundlovu, in South Africa Nduduzo Makhathini is an award-winning pianist, improvisor, healer and scholar and an important change-maker in South Africa’s jazz and wider music scene. Makhathini draws influences from his hometown—a place of significant history as the 19th century royal capital of the Zulu King Dingane, and a place where music and its essential healing powers are both integral to the community. Further influenced by the music he absorbed from the church and from important South African jazz figures such as Bheki Mseleku, Moses Molelekwa, and Abdullah Ibrahim, Makhathini cites John Coltrane’s classic quartet with McCoy Tyner, along with American jazz pianists Andrew Hill, Randy Weston, and Don Pullen as significant influences in his musical journey. Eager to record his work for the wider world, he founded the label Gundu Entertainment in partnership with his wife and vocalist Omagugu Makhathini, with many of those albums garnering awards. His 2017 album Ikhambi was the first to be released on Universal Music South Africa and won Best Jazz Album at the South African Music Awards (SAMA) in 2018. His Blue Note debut Modes of Communication: Letters from the Underworlds was named one of the “Best Jazz Albums of 2020” by The New York TImes. Makhathini’s latest album on Blue Note Records, In the Spirit of NTU was released in 2022. JazzTimes praises that album as “deeply human, a potent brew of fury, joy, and solidarity.”
Makhathini is a well-respected collaborator as a member of Shabaka Hutchings’ band Shabaka and the Ancestors, as well as in formations with Wynton Marsalis, Nasheet Waits, and Stefon Harris among others. For this concert with Earshot, Makhathini will be working with Francisco Mela on drums and Swelakhe Duma Bell Le Pere on bass.
*The Royal Room is now accepting reservations for diners! Follow this link to their online dining reservation page: https://theroyalroomseattle.com/reservations/ Any questions, email email@example.com. Please note that advance concert tickets are required to obtain a table reservation. The Royal Room does not take reservations over the phone.
**Earshot Jazz COVID-19 Policy: Earshot recommends that all ticket holders be vaccinated. Masks are strongly encouraged unless actively eating or drinking. Policy subject to change. Full COVID policy here.
Nduduzo Makathini photo courtesy of Nicola Adriani Music