Ladysmith Black Mambazo - Shaka Zulu - Review
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critics' view

The phrase "Time to meditate," as crooned by Ladysmith Black Mambazo in the song "Hello My Baby," might well be the most exquisitely sung line in all recorded music. Tastefully produced by Paul Simon following the success of Graceland, 1987's Shaka Zulu finds Ladysmith harmonizing as sweetly in English as they do in their native Zulu tongue (conveniently translated here). In addition to Christian and courting songs, Shaka's most interesting tunes provide glimpses into tribal culture. As Ladysmith observe in "Yibo Labo (These Are the Guys)": "There usually are problems with secret lovers / The elders never approve."

Richard Gehr
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