Old African Music

The Drive – Way Back Fifties


Apartheid social engineering in South Africa resulted in increasingly restrictive regulations in the early 1970s. Musical styles such as jazz, soul and rock were viewed as subversive, and there were more and more restrictions on radio, and licensing requirements that meant playing to urban audiences was inherently problematic. Despite these setbacks, The Drive were indisputably the most talented group on the scene in South Africa during this period, renown throughout the country. By the time of the 1975 album Can You Feel It?, sales were buoyed with rotation radio plays of the hit Way Back 50’s, the first track on the album, which is still revered in South Africa to this day.


Jonas Gwangwa – Morwa (live)

Live at the Standard Bank International Jazz Festival, 2006

“A giant of our revolutionary cultural movement and our democratic creative industries has been called to rest; the trombone that boomed with boldness and bravery, and equally warmed our hearts with mellow melody has lost its life force.”

President Cyril Ramaphosa

Jonas Gwangwa embodied South Africa’s struggle for a national culture.


Ami Faku – Lala Ngoxolo Feat. Emtee

A much-needed song for the difficult times we’re all living now… (in South Africa and the world).

“Lala Ngoxolo” translates to “rest in peace” in the Xhosa language.