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 South African singer/guitarist Jonathan Butler has said the title of his 28th album stems from a Zulu philosophy. Ubuntu is a movement towards a humanity state of mind where you see yourself in others. Growing up with apartheid in Cape Town - difficulties arose from listening to vinyl records (a lot of homes had no electricity) to hearing his favorites on the radio. Jonathan has said “our music was not played on the radio”. So he found strength in artists like Donny Hathaway, George Benson, Aretha Franklin and Herbie Hancock. He later became the first black artist with his first single to be played by white radio stations. For this project he wanted to head home (from his current home base in California) and hook up with bassist Marcus Miller to produce the album in Johannesburg in literally just three days. Songs like ‘Coming Home’ are festive with homecoming roots. Another uplifting celebratory track with Jonathan’s amazing semi-acoustic guitar is ‘Bon Appetit’ and ‘SpringtIme In Afrika’ that highlights Miller’s outstanding bass playing (he’s one of my all time favorites). Other highlights include ‘Silver Rain’ - a superb song written by Marcus, Eric Clapton, Joey Kibble and Bill Withers originally from Marcus’s 2005 ‘Silver Rain’ album with it’s Bob Marley influence. The overall message and vibe of this particular album is something we need right now. Enjoy.

Gary James
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