Monday 13 August 2012

Saitana - Baby Don't Go (1976)

Saitana (Monty Mdimande) was an original member of the "monkey jive" or "Soweto soul" group The Beaters. He is pictured above in an early publicity shot with Selby Ntuli, Alec Khaoli and Sipho Mabuse. Some examples of their early organ-led material can be found on this earlier posting.

1976 saw the band achieve overwhelming popular appeal in the then Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) and as a result the band changed their name to Harari - after the "blacks-only" township of Harare. But tensions in the group were rising. This saw Saitana depart Harari during 1976 and record the album Baby Don't Go followed by Jenakuru a few years later. With clear reference to their success in Zimbabwe the lead track on the Baby Don't Go album is Rufaro - a suburb of Harare. But the full story of his departure is still not clear.

This YouTube clip interviewing Masike "Funky" Mohapi explores the early days of Harari.

Rashid Vally recalls the recriminations between the members of Harari and Saitana's desire to follow his own dream of stardom. And so today we share with you his first solo album. His second and arguably stronger album - Jenakuru - mines his love of Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin. A proper commercial reissue of Jerankuru has been under discussion from a long time but without any clear indication of a release date as yet.

Saitana - Baby Don't Go (JAS Pride BL98)
1. Rufaro
2. Baby Don't Go
3. My Pretty Thing
4. Soweto
5. The Disco
6. So Lucky
7. Maroaches Are Back


  1. Saitana's name was not deliberately omitted in the opening sequence of the Harari Afro-Rock Documentary Teaser. We fully recognize that Saitana along with Om Alec Khaoli and the late Selby Ntuli were the initial founders and were subsequently joined by Sipho Mabuse. The teaser was uploaded prior to edit changes, rest assured that Mr. Saitana will get his credit in the titles of the final documentry. Please note the spelling is "Alec" not "Alex" and Masike "Funky" Mohapi is the one being interviewed in the clip not Om Alec. PS: Thank you for recognizing and contributing in upholding the legacy of Harari and its founders.

  2. Shon22
    The post has been updated with your corrections - many thanks! Do you have any more details on the circumstances under which Saitana left the group? Or any more details on when the Harari documentary will be available? I am particularly interested in any additional footage from the performance that included Musikana - of which another short YouTube extract is available.

  3. Thank you. You are doing something pure here.

  4. Hi,

    Any chance of a re-up ?



  5. Chiquilicuatre y ZappaSaturday, May 16, 2015

    Please re-up


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