Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse has played in hundreds of concerts, in venues all over the world, but he feels he has done nothing for young people of this country.
The former Harare Band leader said he was very excited to reintroduce himself to the people of Cape Town as he returned to the Baxter Theatre on Saturday October 27 more than three decades after he last performed there.
The one-night-only performance featured poet and spoken word artist Siphokazi Jonas and Elsies River-born Tony Cedras, who lived and played oversees for many years before recently returning, on accordion, harmonica, keyboard and guitar.
Talking to the Tatler about his return to Cape Town, the 66-year-old musician said he was grateful to be in Cape Town and to be working with the young people of the internationally acclaimed South African Youth Choir (SAYC) and his long time friend, Tony.
“I feel so honoured to work with young people of Cape Town. It is important to share the stage with young people. I hope this will translate into their growth.
“What is important is to allow them to experience (life) without strain. For them it is important to remain focused and they should not be fooled by fame,” he said.
If he had his way, he said, he would take such performances to the townships.
“There is so much talent in the townships. Areas like Langa and others deserve better. Our people are unemployed. We think about the road they have to travel to see us. They still need to eat at the end of the day,” he said.
But he had a suggestion too.
“Maybe we need to do free concerts for them and do workshops especially for kids. But I know that many artists do not want to go to the townships for security reasons.”
In thanking the Baxter and the musicians he worked with, Hotstix praised all of them and said he was privileged to have worked with them.
“I have been privileged to have known Tony for so long. He is such a talented oke, humble and loving.”
To this, Tony responded: “When I heard that Sipho was coming down, I called the organisers and ask them what are you doing without me? I could not miss working with Sipho.”
SAYC conductor Phil Robinson was elated that his choir got to work with Hotstix.
“They have been everywhere in the world but mark my words, they are so excited to have worked with Hotstix. This is an experience they will never forget,” he said.