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Biography and accomplishments of the band Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness (South Africa). www.myspace.com/bantucontinua

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  • BCUC is my soul, my heart, my life.

  • BCUC is my soul, my heart, my life. IndexBiography 4

    The Band 6

    Accomplishments 8

  • transform frustrations and daily struggles

    into positive action

    BiographyMeet us: Meet us: Kgomotso, Hloni, Jovi, Luja, Skhumba and Lerato aka Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness. Our uniqueness combined to greater power makes BCUC a band and above all a human movement. Music, fashion and spoken words are our tools that give us spiritual freedom in a so called free South Africa. Fuelled by the frustrations of ordinary non-politically affiliated conscious

    South African families, we continue the struggle that our (grand) parents started.

    The hands of time chose us to be the leaders of the new freedom fighters; fighting for equal opportunities for all. Through our music we retell the story of Soweto past present future a different way than

  • transform frustrations and daily struggles

    into positive action

    the world knows it. Our stories come from deep down the soul of our people.

    We feel it is our duty to fight on and create freedom for our people. We, BCUC, are role models for youth in Soweto: we are confident, creative, hard working young people who transform frustrations and daily struggles into positive action.

    We feel it is our duty to improve our communities and to show others that if we believe in ourselves and unite, we can make a change and the future is bright.

    That is what we do through our event company Eleventh Element: we organize regular events and workshops to create a platform for fellow musicians in Soweto.

    The music we make is a fusion of pure Afro-ethnic sounds and sincere urban soul. Strong beats of the drum blended with guitars, saxophones and sounds of traditional instruments. Bells and whistles topped by rap, singing and howling voices. A fusion of innovation and tradition, of strong messages and a swinging beat, in the mix of eleven South African languages. As soon as our energy flows and we will make you not only to listen, but to feel and you will feel this music comes from our soul. It is music for the people, by the people, with the people.

  • Zithulele Jovi Zabani

    From the age of thirteen I began my training as a theatre artist, acting, singing and dancing. Later on I fell in love with street theatre. I was a member of Thesele Creative Company. I performed at the Market Theatre, Civic Theatre, Grahamstown Arts Festival and the State Theatre. In 1998 as Thesele, I toured with Les Pietons in France during the soccer world cup in a show called, MONTROWETO. In 2000 and 2002 I toured Europe with Wure Wurre on a show called, ACTION for two months. We played at Lowlands and Stockton Festivals amongst others.

    Kgomotso Neo Mokone

    It was during my school days that I met Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness. Through all the experience I have gained I am able to combine these talents and form part of this dynamic team that is Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness. I found myself and my purpose, which is to uplift my community and Africa as a whole. As well as change the misconception the west has of what Af-rica is and can offer. We are not a dark people! We are the people, the weapons of mass construction!

    Letlogonolo Hloni Maphunye

    I believe in doing original music because one can express oneself better. I have been part of B.C.U.C for the past six years. I am the funk in the band, bringing the fun to the band on stage and off stage. Though our message is serious in nature we do not want to forget that we are human and we need to live and enjoy life. I play the marimba, harmonica, whistles and I do vocals. I am convinced that one can reach people better through music than any other art form.

  • Thabo Luja Ngoepe

    I am a lyricist with the influences from the sounds of the past, present and the future. I utilise our indigenous, cultural music as a weapon to convey messages, struggles and hopes of our people. I do vocals, raps, spoken word blended with percussions, marching drums, guitars, mouth harp including a nose flute. The djembe gives funky soulful vibrations, we call it Bantu Music.

    Lerato Ntsane Lichaba

    I have three years of musical studies and four years of working professionally in the music industry. I am a rhythm and solo guitar player, I am skilled with playing in live performance as well as studio sessions, music arranging and collaborating with other musical ensembles such as Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness. I contain the overall music with harmony, colour and rhythmic breaks. This in turn gives the instrumentation the edge of sound and the digital effects to the sound suite our modern sound.

    Ephraim Skhumbuzo Mahlangu

    Ive played with many ensembles in the past, opening a show for Gladys Knight at the Sun City Superbowl. I have played at various events, such as, Womens Day Celebration in Pretoria Union Buildings, Soweto Arts Alive, I have also performed at the GensteFeest in Belgium with BCUC . Ive also performed at the Bassline in Newtown. My experience is growing everyday and that is made possible through the music.

  • List of accomplishmentsJuly 2009 Menen, International Streettheater FestivalJuly 2009 Deurne (BE), Open Lucht TheaterJuly 2009 Ghent, CharlatanJune 2009 Amsterdam, Roots Open AirJune 2009 Tilburg, Festival MundialJune 2009 Amsterdam, SugarfactoryJune 2009 Middelburg, Youthcentre De SpotMay 2009 Rotterdam, Dunya World Music FestivalJuly 2008 Ghent, Gentse Feesten One day for another worldJuly 2008 Brussels, Maison du Peuple2003 2007 BCUC performed at several open mic stages and festi vals in South Africa, among which: Fire on the mountains (Cape Town), Bassline (Johannesburg) and Streetpop (Soweto).

    Collaborations

    July 2009 With Murga Armada, Divan Express (both Belgium), Adam (Mali) for a show at the OLT Deurne. June 2009 Recorded together Skip & Die (Holland), a band by Jori and Daniel from Cmon & Kypski.Dec 2008 With singer Sioen (Belgium) on documentary Sioen calling up Soweto.July 2008 With the band Zeker Weten (Belgium) for performance at Chatleroi, Antwerp.April 2008 With Benjamin Vanderwalle Filmproductions on an art documentary in Johannesburg.January 2008 Featured in Adriaan Van Dis award winning documentary Van Dis in Afrika, broadcasted on national Dutch television.2005 With Siyafuneke Dance Company: collab between South African, Belgium and Austrian Dancers backed up by the sound of BCUC.

  • Eleventh Elements With Eleventh Elements Productions (E.E.) BCUC invests towards the growth of Sowetos entertainment industry, which is still an infant with amazing potential. Our event company gives a voice to the artists who are still not commercially viable. We feel its our duty to put them on the mainstream because we can only share our experience by teaching through participation. E.E collaborates with local artists using bands, fashion, hip hop crews, photographers, graffiti and tattoo artists. We put that all in a single venue for one night every three months.

    It is a challenge to compete at the same level with big festivals because they can buy their promotion, but we grow in popularity because our standard is of high quality. Our dedication, our creativity and our networks in the community are the cornerstone of making events that are not yet big but very necessary.

    Besides organizing our own events, we also volunteer our time by helping as event support to other initiatives in and around Soweto.

    That collaboration is proof that the people can do more when they are united, value each other and prepared to sweat for what they believe in. We believe that the next revolution has begun and is in motion. E.E. is part of that revolution whether as wheels or petrol, but we are revolution. Our advantage is that we are not an underground movement but we are a small mainstream player.

    Eleventh Elements Productions events: 2008 Backyard sessions: three-monthly event at Ipelegeng Community Centre, White City, Soweto. 2008/7 Arhtritis Walk for the Elders and Disabled: Soweto.2006 Sunday Chill Fever: monthly event in Mapetla, Soweto.2005 Anything Goes Volume 1 4 at Couch and Coffee, Johannesburg.2004 Fire on the Mountain Cape Town: co-producers.2003/4 Soweto Arts Festival under mentorship of Arabi Mocheke. (www.sowetoartsfestival.co.za)

  • Our joints are contagious whether you feel or not you will come out changed.

    Photos by: Sipho Futshane, Humphrey Daniels, Jorg van der Ham and Jorien Waanders.Sponsored by: Media & Entertainment Management, Inholland University, HaarlemDesign by: Jorg van der Ham

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