Hugh Ramopolo Masekela was a singer and celebrated flugelhorn artist. He made his debut with the horn at 14 and was still blowing strong when he died at age 78 on January 23rd, 2018. Hugh Masekela's albums and best songs have had a profound impact on his fans all over the world.
Hugh Masekela was born in Witbank, South Africa, on April 4th, 1939. Who taught Hugh Masekela for trumpet? He grew up playing the piano, and Father Huddleston introduced him to the trumpet at a tender age. His extensive musical style is infused with Jazz and Mbaqanga. The maestro has collaborated with several legends such as Harry Belafonte, The Byrds, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Miriam Makeba, and Paul Simon.
Hugh Masekela albums and best songs
Hugh churned out over 40 solo albums. He also launched a record, House of Masekela. There is a compilation of traditional South African wedding hymns among Hugh Masekela's songs.
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Several of his songs were composed and recorded in New York, including his Grammy-winning hit Grazing in the Grass.
Hugh Masekela albums
The jazz maestro has a myriad of songs under his belt. Hugh Masekela's albums have been produced and released by various record labels, including MGM. Some of them are via his own production house. Below are some of his famous albums.
It was recorded in New York City and released in August 1962 while he was still in school. It was released via Mercury Records.
The Americanization of Ooga Booga
The album is a mix of American jazz themes and South African musical inspirations. It was recorded live at The Village Gate nightclub in New York City. It was released through the MGM Records label.
Hugh Masekela's Next Album
It was recorded in New York City and released in December 1966 via MGM Records label.
The Emancipation of Hugh Masekela
This album was recorded in Los Angeles and released via the Chisa Records label. A compilation of his songs, Tracks Child of the Earth, Felicidade, and Ha Lese Le Di Khanna, were included.
Hugh Masekela's Latest
This album was released in 1967 through the Uni Records label. Some of its notable tracks include Baby, Baby, Baby, Here, and There and Everywhere.
Hugh Masekela is Alive and Well at the Whisky
It was recorded live at Whisky a Go Go nightclub in Hollywood, California. Some of the hits in the album are Up Up and Away and A White Shade of Pale.
The Promise of a Future
It was recorded in March 1968 in Los Angeles, California. The album was released again on CD in 1993 on the One Way label. The Promise of a Future has Masekela's rendition of the famous instrumental masterpiece, Grazing in the Grass.
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It was probably recorded in New York in 1966 and in Los Angeles around late 1967. The album was intended to expand people's awareness of African music.
The Lasting Impression of Hugh Masekela
The album was released by MGM Records label but was recorded in New York at The Village Gate. In December 1968, it was released as a separate album.
The album was recorded in Los Angeles. In this album, the artist performs several of his compositions. The tracks Mace and Grenades and Gold were included in the album.
It was released via the Chisa Records label. The album was launched on CD in 1994 by MoJazz label. Hugh Masekela included the song I Will by John Lennon and Paul McCartney.
Hugh Masekela & The Union of South Africa
It was released through the Chisa Records label. The album was re-released on CD in 1994 on the MoJazz label.
Home Is Where the Music Is (The African Connection)
The album is a 1972 jazz and Afrobeat double LP by Hugh Masekela and issued jointly by the American label Chisa and Blue Thumb Records. It also appears in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.
Introducing Hedzoleh Soundz
The album was recorded in Nigeria and released in 1973. Track Languta was later included in his renowned album Still Grazing.
I Am Not Afraid
It was recorded in Los Angeles. Tracks like Been such a Long Time Gone and Stimela were also included in the album.
The Boy's Doin' It
It was recorded in Lagos, Nigeria, and released through Casablanca Records. Verve Records released the album again on CD in 1998 with six extra tracks. Some of the songs in the album include Hugh Masekela's Mama, Excuse Me Please, and Ashiko.
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It was recorded in New York and Chicago and released on LP. Later on, it was released by Casablanca Records as an 8-track cassette. Soon after its release, many viewed it as a concept album and protest album because of the songs Colonial Man, Cecil Rhodes, and Vasco Da Gama. These songs portrayed African anti-colonial views.
It was recorded in Maryland and Virginia and released in 1976 through Casablanca Records. The tracks Toejam and Hi-Life were launched on CD in 1998 on Verve Records as a part of The Boy's Doin' It album.
You Told Your Mama Not to Worry
The album was recorded in Ghana and released in November by Casablanca Records. It includes the song Soweto Blues, performed by songstress Miriam Makeba. The tracks You Told Your Mama Not to Worry, and Mami Wata were released on CD in 1998 on Verve Records as an extra part of his previous album, The Boy's Doin.
Herb Alpert/Hugh Masekela
It is a studio album by Herb Alpert and Hugh Masekela that was recorded in Hollywood, California. It was released in 1978 via A&M Records and Horizon Records labels.
The album was released again on CD in 1996 via Columbia Records with a rearranged listing of the tracks.
It is a studio album released by Hugh Masekela in 1984 and was recorded in Botswana.
Waiting for the Rain
The album features a collection of local African stars. Notable ones include Bheki Mseleku and feature a cover of Fela Kuti's classic song Lady. The album is a dedication to Pauline Bowers Masekela, his mother.
It was recorded in New York City and Jersey City and released via the Novus Records label. It is his last album in exile before apartheid ended.
Beatin' Aroun de Bush
It was recorded in Hollywood and released via the Novus Records label.
Hope is a live album by South African jazz trumpeter Hugh Masekela.
Hugh Masekela's - Stimela
This 1994 compilation album is a jazz trumpeter from South Africa. The album was compiled and produced by Masekela's long-time colleague Stewart Levine.
Notes of Life
The album was recorded in South Africa. It was released via the Columbia label. Sony Music launched Notes of Life on CD in 1999.
Black to the Future
The 1998 studio album by Bra Hugh was recorded in Mafikeng, South Africa.
It was recorded in South Africa and released through the Shanachie label.
Grazing in the Grass (The Best of Hugh Masekela)
The album was released via the Columbia label. It is a reflective collection that includes 14 tracks by Masekela.
The album was recorded in Johannesburg, South Africa, and released by Sony and Columbia record labels. Hugh Masekela's - Send Me song was among the best songs featured in the album.
It was released on October 7th, 2003, through Spectrum Music label.
In this album, his flugelhorn and vocals were matched against the music of the guitar, keyboards, and bass work of Erik Paliani. It alternates between breezy instrumentals, township vocals, and moderately sturdy ballads.
Live at the Market Theater
The album represents his commitment to South African Identity. It consists of 15 tracks recorded in June 2006 at his two-and-a-half-hour concert at the theatre in Jo'burg.
The album is a retrospective collection of his compositions recorded between 1966 and 1974. It is the soundtrack to Masekela's recent autobiography, which bears the same name.
Almost Like Being in Jazz
The album was released on June 7th, 2005, via the Chisa Records label. The collection is composed of 12 jazz standards.
The Chisa Years: 1965–1975 (Rare and Unreleased)
The collection consists of more than ten exceptional or forgotten numbers recorded by Hugh Masekela and Stewart Levine between 1965 and 1975 when they managed their own Chisa Records label.
The record was released through Listen 2 label in the USA and the Gallo Record Company label based in South Africa. Jabulani translates as to be happy or to bring joy and happiness. The album is a collection of traditional South African wedding songs recorded in Pretoria, South Africa.
The album was recorded in Pretoria and premiered in Cape Town at the Mahogany Room in April 2012.
Playing at Work
Recorded in Pretoria and launched in 2012, with a reworked version in 2013. The album is evidence that the maestro always had an element of surprise in most of his releases.
It is Masekela's last studio album, and Universal Music released it. It was his first album after five years.
Hugh Masekela's songs list
With so many albums that Hugh released, it is difficult to pick out the best songs since most were chart-topping hits. However, some of Hugh Masekela's best songs include the following:
- Grazing in the Grass
- Bring Him Back Home (Nelson Mandela)
- Ha Le Se Le Li Khanna
- Don't Go Lose It Baby
- Up-Up and Away
- Grazing in the Grass
- Puffin' On Down the Track
Best Hugh Masekela's albums
Below is a table of all his albums and the year they were released.
|1966||The Americanization of Ooga Booga|
|1966||Hugh Masekela's Next Album|
|1966||The Emancipation of Hugh Masekela|
|1967||Hugh Masekela's Latest|
|1967||Hugh Masekela Is Alive and Well at the Whisky|
|1968||The Promise of a Future|
|1968||The Lasting Impression of Hugh Masekela|
|1971||Hugh Masekela & The Union of South Africa|
|1972||Home Is Where the Music Is (aka The African Connection)|
|1973||Introducing Hedzoleh Soundz|
|1974||I Am Not Afraid|
|1975||The Boy's Doin' It|
|1977||You Told Your Mama Not to Worry|
|1978||Herb Alpert / Hugh Masekela|
|1978||Main Event Live (with Herb Alpert)|
|1985||Waiting for the Rain|
|1992||Beatin' Aroun de Bush|
Below is a table of all his albums and the year they were released.
|1996||Notes of Life|
|1998||Black to the Future|
|1999||The Best of Hugh Masekela on Novus|
|2001||Grazing in the Grass: The Best of Hugh Masekela|
|2002||Live at the BBC|
|2005||Almost Like Being in Jazz|
|2006||The Chisa Years: 1965–1975 (Rare and Unreleased)|
|2007||Live at the Market Theatre|
|2011||Friends (Hugh Masekela and Larry Willis)|
|2012||Playing @ Work|
|2020||Rejoice (Tony Allen and Hugh Masekela)|
Who is Hugh Masekela?
He was famously known as the father of South African jazz. He was a trumpeter, flugelhorn player, cornetist, singer, and composer best known for songs like Soweto Blues and Bring Him Back Home.
How old is Hugh Masekela?
- The South African artist was born on April 4, 1939. He was 78 years old at the time of his death.
Where does Hugh Masekela come from?
He was born in the Witbank township of KwaGuqa, now known as Emalahleni, South Africa. His parents were health inspector Thomas Selena Masekela and social worker Pauline Bowers Masekela.
How many albums does Hugh Masekela have?
At the time of his death, he had released over 40 albums. Some include The Promise of a Future, Trumpet Africaine, and Almost Like Being in Jazz.
Why was Hugh Masekela exiled from South Africa?
Following the political unrest surrounding the 1960 Sharpeville Massacre, Masekela went into exile in 1961. He had done much to bring attention to the oppressive regime that kept him out of the country for decades.
How did Hugh Masekela influence the country?
The musician used his public platform to condemn apartheid and substance abuse. His music has inspired many people, and he is still recognized for his talent.
Hugh Masekela was such a determined and hard-working artist. He made extensive global tours as he produced more albums and songs. South Africa and the music world still consider Hugh Masekela's albums and best songs as some of the best music ever.
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Source: Briefly News