Freshly Ground biography: members, best songs and albums

Freshly Ground biography: members, best songs and albums

South Africa has been the source of great music over the years, with some of the artists from South Africa going on to tour worldwide. Freshly Ground is one of the most successful Afro-fusion groups in South Africa. The band has toured different countries, performing their music, and the highlight of the group came when they performed “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)” with Shakira. This was the theme song of the 2010 World Cup held in South Africa. Huge, right?

Freshly ground biography: members, best songs and albums

Image:, @freshlygrpundsa
Source: Instagram

Freshlyground band members are of different nationalities. The South African band combines some elements of jazz, blues, and indie rock with traditional South African music such as African folk music and kwela. Freshlyground has been making music since 2002, dropping several albums in the time-span.

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Freshly ground biography

Freshlyground is an Afro-fusion band formed in 2002, in Cape Town. The band features members who are from Mozambique, South Africa, and Zimbabwe. So, who is Freshly Ground lead singer? This detailed biography will give you a clear understanding of the band and what they have achieved over the years.

Freshlyground profile

Freshly Ground members


Image:, @freshlygroundsa
Source: Instagram

The band comprises of vocalists and instrumentalists. Over the years, some members left the band and ended up being replaced.

  1. Zolani Mahola is the lead vocalist and has been in the band from 2002 to date.
  2. Simon Attwell plays the flute, saxophone, and keyboard.
  3. Peter Cohen is the drummer.
  4. Kyla-Rose Smith – played the violin and also helped with vocals (2003-2016).
  5. Chris “Bakkies” Bakalanga – lead guitar (2016 to date), he replaced Kyla-Rose Smith.
  6. Julio “Gugs” Sigauque – Electric and acoustic guitar.
  7. Josh Hawks – Bass guitar, vocals.
  8. Aron Turest Schwartz – Keyboard (2002-2009).
  9. Seredeal “Shaggy” Scheepers – Keyboards (2008 to date).

Freshly ground albums

Being in the music industry for over 16 years, Freshlyground has managed to release several albums creating an impressive discography. The band has dropped seven albums so far, and these albums feature some great Freshly Ground songs.

1. Jika Jika

Freshlyground debut album ‘Jika Jika’ came out in 2003, and has eleven tracks. The album is over 40 minutes long. Jika Jika was massively successful leading to an invitation to perform at the Harare International Festival of Arts and the Robben Island African Festival. In 2008, the album was re-released after being remixed by Keith Farquharson and remastered by Chris Athens.

2. Nomvula

Freshlyground Nomvula was released in late 2004 and was Freshlyground’s second studio album. The album had Freshlyground’s Doo Be Doo song as part of the track. Freshly Ground Nomvula album has 14 tracks including a bonus track. The album achieved double platinum status in South Africa.

3. Ma’ Cheri

After two years of hiatus, Fleshyground released their third studio album on 3rd September 2007. The album has 15 tracks including a bonus track, and the notable single on the album is ‘Pot Belly’.

4. Radio Africa

The band came back with their fourth album, Radio Africa, in May 2010. Radio Africa was released together with a music video done in collaboration with ZANews puppeteers. The track titled ‘Chicken to Change’ mocked the-then Zimbabwe president, Robert Mugabe., and got the attention of the British Media.

5. Take Me to the Dance

Freshlyground in 2012 released their fifth album ‘Take Me to the Dance’. The album has 15 tracks including a bonus track.

6. The Legend

Staying consistent, Freshlyground released their sixth studio album ‘The Legend’ in 2013. The album has 13 tracks including recordings of some of their live performances.

7. Can’t Stop

Freshly ground members

Image:, @freshlygroundsa
Source: Instagram

On 13th April 2018, Freshlyground released their seventh studio album “Can’t Stop”. The album has 12 tracks.

Freshlyground top songs

Over the years, Freshlyground has dropped some gems. Their tracks feature content while being catchy and smooth. Here are some of their top songs.

1. Shakira - Waka Waka (This Time for Africa) ft Freshlyground

This song was the 2010 World Cup song. The event was held in South Africa, and Freshlyground represented South Africa well with this song. This particular video has over 57 million views, with another video of the song having over 2.2 billion views on YouTube.

2. Freshlyground – Pot Belly

Pot belly is the second track in the Ma’ Cheri album. The video to the song has over 1.2 million views on YouTube.

3. Freshly Ground I'd Like

I’d Like is the 6th track on their second album Nomvula. The official video to the song has over 970k views on YouTube. It is among the most successful song commercials.

5. Freshlyground – Fire is Low

This song is a single from their fourth album ‘Radio Africa’. The video to the song has over 880k views on YouTube.

6. Freshly Ground Doo Be Doo

Freshlyground Doo be Doo is part of their second album. The video to the song has over 600k views on YouTube since being posted on their channel on 15th November 2009. The song received massive radio play when it came out.

7. Freshlyground – Ma’ Cheri

This song is from their 3rd studio album “Ma’ Cheri”. The video featuring a live performance of this song has over 429k views on YouTube.

8. Freshlyground – Nomvula

This song was the second track on their album ‘Nomvula’. The video to the song has over 370k views on YouTube.

9. Freshlyground - Don't Leave Me

Don’t Leave Me is a single that was released in 2015. The video has over 96k view on YouTube.

10. Freshlyground – Take Me to the Dance

This song is off the ‘Take Me to the Dance’ album. The video to the song has over 93k views on YouTube.

11. Freshlyground - Banana Republic

This song is off their recent album, Can’t Stop. The video has over 71k views on YouTube.

12. Freshlyground – BLCK GRLS

This song is off the Can’t Stop album. The video has over 49k views on YouTube.

13. Freshlyground – Castles in The Sky

This song is off their debut album Jika Jika. This song was the first music video the band did. The video has over 18k views on YouTube.

Freshlyground achievements and awards

  • Won the Best Group in the 2008 South African Music Awards.
  • Won the Album of the Year, Best Adult Contemporary Album: English and Best Engineer in the 2008 South African Music Awards for their album, Ma’ Cheri.
  • Won Best Africa, Southern in the 2008 Channel O Music Video Awards for the Pot Belly video.
  • Won the Best African Act in the 2006 MTV Europe Music Awards.
  • 3 Nominations in the 2005 South African Music Awards for their album, Nomvula.

The band has also performed with some of the best artists in the world:

  • Performing ‘Waka Waka’ with Shakira at the 2010 FIFA World Cup
  • Performing with Oliver Mtukudzi at the Harare International Festival of the Arts
  • Performed alongside Miriam Makeba, Stanley Clarke, and Femi Kuti at the North Sea Jazz Festival in Cape Town.

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It is worth noting that when retired President Barack Obama visited the University of Cape Town in 2013, he cited Freshlyground as one of the contributions that SA has made globally. That is how amazing this band is! Freshly Ground longevity is an indication of the level of talent within the band, and all signs show that the band will continue releasing more music and doing live shows. Meanwhile, enjoy their great music!



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