Monday 21 April 2014

Modern Sax Stars (1967)

I recently acquired a number of distinctly mellow mid-70s mbaqanga LPs by the Intuthuko Brothers and for today I had planned to post the earliest of those featuring Hansford Mthembu. But I came across a YouTube posting by alkis09 of Bra Sello with Abafana Bentuthuko where kayem11 had added a comment mentioning that Abafana Bentuthuko were also known as the Intuthuko Brothers. Of course I should have known... I recalled a 1967 CBS LP Modern Sax Stars featuring David Khanyile (Festus the Great), Bra Sello and Hansford Mthembu or (as the LP cover clearly notes) Abafana Bentuthuko.

Abafana Bentuthuko led by Hansford Mthembu were the backing band on a number of LPs for Bra Sello Mmutung. So for today's post I thought to focus on this earlier LP featuring the group, and cover their later 1970s material in future postings. You may be familiar with some of the tracks included here, 12-0-12 and Vala Nzimande were big hits for Bra Sello and Hansford Mthembu respectively, and are also featured on Nick Lotay's earlier post: Sax Jive Special. Bra Sello can also be heard here at EJ on Butterfly, and on the compilations DiscoSoulJive, and Pull Up! Sixties Jazz 78s.

David Khanyile (Festus the Great)
Bra Sello and his Band
Hansford Mthembu (Abafana Bentuthuko)
Modern Sax Stars
LAB 4002


  1. What a close shave for me, Siemon! I've been seeking more Bra Sello/Abafana Bentuthuko stuff for ages now. I opened you posting with much anticipation only to find it's the exact 12 tracks I picked up some 10 years ago (as Bra Sello & Abafana Bentuthuko's 'Eziphuma Phambili' (Best of...). I am the 'kayem11' that commented on a YT upload by 'alkis09' (Alkis Giamalis), my Greek friend in Athens who introduced me to EJ. I can't wait for whatever more you have up your sleeve! Keep them rolling in, my man. Cheers

  2. Manzo, many thanks. You won't be disappointed, between Chris and I we have at least four more!

  3. Again a winner which prooves that South of the Limpopo there was an exciting music scene which did for one reason or another not reach a world audience. Lucky you are there to treat us with these gems. I had a small collection of sax jive from during my days in Zim but now through your website I can enjoy a lot of bands which I only knew by name. It drives my kids crazy as they do not have much contact with their motherland anymore, but i believe that one day they will appreciate there cultural heritage because at least they were exposed to it. We love it thank you

  4. This is a super collection! I picked it off from you a short while ago and keep playing it with increasing pleasure. It just does not get old! I've played it four times today - maybe five, or is it six. Its good music. I *love* the ELECTRIC JIVE website - you have given me so much good music I would *never* have encountered any other way.


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