All about Sotho Sounds

Left to right back row: The fantastic, late, Thumelo, Diane (owner of Malealea Lodge)
Tankiso, Ramaleke, Tsidiso, Risenga (manager)
centre: Mike (owner of Malealea Lodge) Paseka
left to right front row: Giya (friend), Josepha, Richard, Mrisi (friend)

This photo is a classic! Taken at Womad in 2003 by Jackie Wills. It was the first time Sotho Sounds had been out of their country, Lesotho. Sadly Thumelo died in 2004 but you can hear his bird whistling on the album, Junk Funk, and this new tour is dedicated to his memory.

Left to right: Risenga Makondo (background), Simpiwe Mathole - master
marimba player of all times and Amampondo's heartbeat
on the Womad World Stage with a very young Richard

Sotho Sounds began as herd boys in the highlands of Lesotho. Isolated in the mountains they became determined to make something out of nothing and crafted instruments from wood, tin, scrap metal, car parts, inner tubes and wire. 

The result was a mini homemade collection of four-string tin-can guitars, metal one-string fiddles and oil-barrel drums. Fused with soulful vocals, whistles, pumping accordion and stomping gumboot dancing they created their own songs inspired by gospel, township jive, hip-hop, reggae and traditional stories.
More about the band to follow. Keep coming back!