Gisele Turner Reports on the Launch of the Updated Marabi Nights by Christopher Ballantine
Gisele Turner from Going Places SA attended the recent launch of the updated and expanded second edition of Marabi Nights: Jazz, ‘Race’ and Society by Christopher Ballantine at the UKZN Centre for Jazz and Popular Music.
Turner describes Ballantine’s address at the event in which he talked about his “long and sometimes fraught journeys tracking down recordings, on old 78 rpm’s gathering dust in small shops or lying forgotten in cupboards in township homes.” She says of the book that Christopher Ballantine “followed his heart and his head” and has created something that is both informative and engaging.
The updated and expanded second edition of Christopher Ballantine’s seminal book on South African Jazz from the 1920’s to the 1960’s Marabi Nights was launched in appropriate style at UKZN’s Centre for Jazz & Popular Music. Dr Sazi Dlamini played acoustic guitar and was accompanied by his brother Njeza on that rare home-made instrument, the T-Box Bass. Dr Nishlyn Ramanna – a jazz pianist, composer and educator, gave a breezily eloquent address and Christopher Ballantine’s speech was clean, informal and interesting.