9th Avenue

9th Avenue

BandJazzWorld

Biography

At last, a stunning new band unlike any in South Africa.

9th Avenue comprises of nine incredibly talented musicians who have spent the last few months working on a new concept that is creating a stir in the industry. The members all bring with them a wealth of experience and talent that has been cultivated over years of performing in the industry, both locally and internationally. They have performed with the “best of the best”, played at some of the most prestigious venues to some of the most prestigious people but more importantly…they have passion.

With a five piece horn section which is flute, trumpet ,trombone, alto saxophone and baritone saxophone, rhythm section drums, bass, guitar and keyboards this group is performing songs like they were meant to be played.

Add to this, is a truly amazing vocalist, Gift Mahlangu who is also a trombone player and some times a featured guest PHINDILE and you begin to understand why the performance and diversity of this band has got the industry talking. The group have carefully chosen some of the most amazing songs to pay tribute to and have incorporated, not only the standard party songs but their repertoire includes various popular reggae songs, South African classics, commercial tracks and even a few rock songs! With songs like Gorgy Porgy, Easy Lover , and My Everything ( Barry White), 9th Avenue’s performance is like stepping into a time machine, taking you back to the days when the songs were written and performed by the “Greats”. Also with their original songs, which is the fusion of African, jazz , latino , funk and dance music .The music quite simply comes alive.

A truly classy act!

THE MEMBERS

1. John Seotlolla –Trumpet

Started playing alto tuba in a church marching band from 1982 – 1989. In 1996 went to Gauteng Music Academy under Dr. Johnny Mekoa, majoring in trumpet. In 1997 attended a convention in USA called International Association of Jazz Educators where he was awarded with an award as an outstanding performer. 1999 he joined a 22 piece band called Yarona Jazz Ensemble, in 2001 he traveled to Holland, Germany and Belgium with a dance and music group called stampins. From 2002 started performing with the likes of Victor Ntoni, Sipho Mabuse, McCoy Mrubata the list goes on. 2005 went to a tour with Sarafina under Mbongeni Ngema and currently a member of 9th Avenue.

2. Gift Mahlangu – Trombone

He studied at Gauteng Music Academy under the leadership of Dr Johnny Mekoa, wrote his theory and practical in the same year. In 1998 he was involved with a 22 piece band called Yarona Ensemble which performed in places like Moretele Park, Pretoria Theater and e.t.c. He has performed with the likes of Bheki Mseleku, Victor Ntoni, McCoy Mrubata, Vusi Khumalo and currently a committed member of 9th Avenue.

3. Lucky Ngwaza – Saxophonist ( Alto )

He studied music at Gauteng Music Academy under the leadership of Dr. Johnny Mekoa from the year 1994 to 1998. From the year 1999 to 2000 he became member of the National Youth Jazz. He performed in places like Grahams town Arts Festival, The Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, International Association of Jazz Educators and quite number of corporate gigs. He also got an opportunity to perform with McCoy Mrubata and Victor Ntoni. Currently he is a member of 9th Avenue.

4. Thabo Nkala – Flute

In 1996 he studied at Gauteng Music Academy under the leadership of Dr. Johnny Mekoa and wrote his theory and did practical in the same year. In 1998 was part of an 18 piece band called Yarona Ensemble which performed in places such as Moretele Park and Pretoria state theater. In 1999 he one of the founders of a project called Khulanathi Music Project its primary function was to teach young students who are at primary level music. He also got an opportunity to perform with some of the country’s greatest such as Hugh Masikela, Thandi Klassen, Khaya Mahlangu, Victor Ntoni and McCoy Mrubata. Currently busy furthering his music studies and playing with a band called 1520 and also he is member of 9th Avenue.

5. Karabo Mohlala – Saxophonist ( Tenor, Baritone, Flute)

Studied at the Royal Schools of Music did a grade five theory and grade three and five soprano and tenor saxophone. In 1993 he was in Madimba Institute of African Music, majored in soprano sax and akadinda (xylophone from Uganda). He then affiliated with the Gauteng Music Academy directed by Dr. Johnny Mekoa between 1994 to 1997, majored in tenor and soprano saxophone. Here are some of his performances: performed with the schools 16 piece band, played at the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund launch, the launch of the book long walk to freedom (Nelson Mandela), was in the first National Youth Jazz Orchestra (by Standard Bank), played for the late Clive Mannel (apple computers) in collaboration with Mama Abigail Kubheka, Mama Sophie Mgcina and Cocky Two Bull. On merit was chosen to attend the International Association of Jazz Educators confe