Music to toyi-toyi to
Those who have suffered through recent power failures, courtesy of Eskom, may want to buy a copy of the new CD by the Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF), which rails against privatisation of basic services. It is a compilation of music to toyi-toyi to, capturing the songs chanted during APF marches over the years.
“This CD is a record of our struggle, culture, and the promotion of our organisation,” says Mondli Hlatshwayo, media officer of the APF.
The CD aims to rally workers to unite and fight the evils of privatisation, which, they claim, have worsened the lives of the poor majority and resulted in prepaid meters, electricity and water cut-offs and housing evictions.
“The government has delivered for the black middle class, but life in general for the masses is very difficult,” says Hlatshwayo.
The album, titled Songs of the Working Class, Volume One, perhaps lacks the vibrancy that these songs have when sung at marches and on the streets, and is unlikely to get anyone, except social movement stalwarts, up and grooving. The songs start sounding the same after a while and, although some are interesting, in general the music lacks the necessary vigour to get people on their feet, and is unlikely to meet radio-playability standards.
But, given that this CD was not produced by professional musicians, but by APF activist Shim “Gaddafi” Mohohlo, in his backyard shack studio in Sebokeng, with vocals by fellow activist Patrick “Patra” Sindane, it is a fair effort and an interesting alternative to the endless commercial songs about money and cars.
A percentage of the proceeds from the sale of the CD will go to the artists, while the rest is being saved for the production of the next volume of songs. The CD sells for R45. For more details go to www.apf.org.za.