Bakithi Kumalo at Satalla (pictures included)

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Eli M., Nov 20, 2005.

  1. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

    Jul 24, 2004
    New York, NY
    (standard 2:00 in the morning disclaimer - if this post seems a bit disorganized, that's because it's 2:00 in the morning)

    Some of you may remember a thread I posted in August when I went to a concert in Huntington featuring Steve Adelson and Bakithi Kumalo.

    I found out this month that Bakithi and his band were playing at Satalla this evening (I'm on Satalla's mailing list because I've been there before) so I went to the show tonight.

    I think when he's the bandleader, not part of a backing band, he usually plays the fretted bass - he only played fretless for one or two songs tonight. They surprised me by jamming on the theme of "You Can Call Me Al", complete with the two bass solos (although the drummer wasn't familiar with the structure of the song and forgot to stop playing both times it came up).

    At one point he brought up this young bassist he knew who was very talented; she played one or two numbers while he played drums. He also brought up a singer for one song. This show had a lot of percussion - not only did he have a drummer and two percussionists, but he played djembe and congas a few times.

    I didn't recognize his basses, so after the show I asked him about them. He said they were built by Bass Loft (?) or something I hadn't heard of. The fretted bass was a 35" scale set-neck 6 string, and the fretless was a short scale (32" ?) neck-through 4-string with a MM pickup.

    Some pictures from after the show:



  2. Lackey


    May 10, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Huh. Well, to be honest, I'm not at all familiar with him, but he looks like a great guy! I like folks that aren't condescending - especially when they hand out their moneymaking machine like halloween candy!

    Could you recommend some albums with him playing?
  3. junerig


    Sep 12, 2005
    Good to hear that he's still at it! I love his playing - definitely a mother.Unfortunately, he hasn't been very exposed and his albums are hard find. Not 'Graceland' ofcourse, but his own albums 'Step on the Bassline', 'San Bonan' and 'In Front of My Eyes' - worth looking into!
  4. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

    Jul 24, 2004
    New York, NY
    Of the Paul Simon albums, Graceland and Rhythm of the Saints are the best to actually hear him. He played on about half the tracks on You're the One but he's not "featured" as much as he is on the other two albums.

    He's also worked with Laurie Anderson, Cyndi Lauper, Hugh Masekela, and others (I haven't heard those albums).
  5. Very cool! sounds like a great show!
  6. Yeah I live on Long Island and I still have yet to see Bakithi, I know he's a fantastic player. I know he used to play shows right by Stony brook University (it's where I go to school). Next time you hear that hes around PM me!!
  7. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Very cool, I absolutely love his playing on Graceland, but he is quite "unknown", aside from Graceland his other albums are very difficult to find.
  8. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Brooklyn, NY
  9. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

    Jul 24, 2004
    New York, NY
    I think that's her.
  10. Muzique Fann

    Muzique Fann Howzit brah

    Dec 8, 2003
    Kauai, HI
    You're killing me! I bet that was hot.
  11. jjtsucka


    Aug 31, 2004
    i actually live on LI as well so PM me as well if he is playing or any other bass great for that matter. I meet him my senior year he came into my film class and we recorded his lecture on apartheid for those who dont know he grew up in south africa during it. he also played a couple of tunes for us including "You Can Call Me Al" and after it was over he let me play the fretless acoustic that he was playing too bad I was a major newbie at the time. oh well he is a really nice guy and I'd love to see him play again
  12. Blackbird

    Blackbird Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    I think Rhythm of the Saints has Armand Sabbal-Lecco.

    If you never heard Bakhiti, Graceland is the one to get. That record sent me for a loop! I almost ripped out the frets on my first bass when I heard it back in '87.

    his solo albums are good too.
  13. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

    Jul 24, 2004
    New York, NY
    Yes. I think Bakithi only played on 3 songs.

    One of which was "The Coast," a perfect example of restraint in fretless playing. He pretty much stays in the background on that one - nothing fancy, no glissandi, etc.
  14. Muzique Fann

    Muzique Fann Howzit brah

    Dec 8, 2003
    Kauai, HI
    I know this is an old one but I just watched the Graceland concert in Africa on dvd last night (thanks Netflix). Granted his sound isn't as great as on the album but it's still pretty damn good. He grooves out the whole time! Plays the fretless Washburn mostly (sometimes with a pick) but also uses a couple different fretted basses. Just wish they would have shown him more. Great stuff - although Paul Simon isn't the best...umm...front man/performer. Let's just say his dance moves weren't the best of the night, haha.
  15. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Indianapolis, IN
    great show encounter!

    Tal is wicked on bass!

    Anyone heard San Bonan? It is a great album.
  16. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

    Jul 24, 2004
    New York, NY
    That is one of my favorite DVDs. It's fun to watch for the continuity errors, when he's shown playing one bass and you hear that it's obviously the other one (they did two performances there).

    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Supporting Member

    Cool, glad to hear you had a good time. The Goatee works well for you. :bassist: