Checkout the below listed latest and best top 10 best South African songs of all time 2017, On the African Continent, sits a most wonderful and culturally diverse country that is South Africa. South Africa is representative of the evolution of a people, their trials and tribulations as they embark on a journey of self discovery. The musical heritage of South Africa is a reflection of such a journey. Rich in tribal history, yet welcoming influences from east and west alike, all the while proclaiming the lives of their people, the musicans of South Africa have done the world a great favor in bringing us their story.
- 10. Master Jack – Four Jacks and Jill
- 9. For Your Precious Love – The Flames
- 8. Yakhal Inkomo – Winston “Mankunku” Ngozi
- 7. Blues for a Hip King – Abdullah Ibrahim (1975)
- 6. Paradise Road – Joy (1979)
- 5. Weekend Special – Brenda Fassie
- 4. Chocolate Toffee – Saitana (1976)
- 3. Soundtracks and Comebacks – Goldfish (2008)
- 2. Hemel van die Platteland (Heaven in the Countryside) -Fokofpolisiekar (2004)
- 1. Pata Pata – Miriam Makeba
Here we present the list of top 10 best South African songs of all time 2017.
10. Master Jack – Four Jacks and Jill
South African folk rock/pop group Four Jacks and Jill recorded “Master Jack” in 1968. For many, the lyrics were prophetic of what was to come. “Master Jack” is a simple folk melody, with acoustic accompaniment that concerned itself with the South African politics of the day. Glenys Lynne’s haunting vocals gently touch the lyrics “It’s a strange, strange world we live in, Master Jack, you taught me all I know, and I’ll never look back, It’s a very strange world, and I thank you, Master Jack”. “Master Jack” hit the charts of many countries, and landing at number one in their native South Africa.
9. For Your Precious Love – The Flames
“For Your Precious Love” was originally written in 1958 by Arthur Brooks, Richard Brooks and Jerry Butler, and has seen a multitude of versions performed by various musical artists. The South African musical group, The Flames, covered the Brooks and Butler 1958 composition, “For Your Precious Love” in 1968, where it hit the top position of the South African charts, and has since remained a classic in the country. With a classic 60’s pop flavor, “For Your Precious Love” is a straightforward and simple cover of a classic love song.
8. Yakhal Inkomo – Winston “Mankunku” Ngozi
“Yakhal Inkomo” is an absolutely fabulous and intricate, fun and energetic jazz composition. In 1968, jazz great Winston “Mankunku” Ngozi released “Yakhal Inkomo”, with Mankunku on Sax, Lionel Pillay handling Piano, Agrippa Magwaza on bass and Early Mabuza on drums. While no official chart records exist for South Africa at this time, Ngozi’s rendition of “Yakhal Inkomo” is considered a part of South African musical heritage. Indeed, this track got Mankunku awarded the Castle Lager “Jazz Musician of the Year” award for 1968.
7. Blues for a Hip King – Abdullah Ibrahim (1975)
Pianist and composer, Abdullah Ibrahim was born in Cape Town, South Africa in 1934. A master in his own right, Abdullah released an album in 1989 called “Blues for a Hip King”. The title song off the album because a fast favorite with South Africans, and was from a 1975 jazz session. “Blues for a Hip King” features the gentle roll of Abdullah’s keyboard, while the slow-moving rhythm of Basil Coetzee’s sax solo puts the listener into almost a trance state. Subtle and sweet, “Blues for a Hip King” plays well, and as a result has remained a classic in South Africa’s musical culture.
6. Paradise Road – Joy (1979)
“Paradise Road” was released by the South African musical group, Joy in 1980. An instant hit, “Paradise Road” climbed up the charts on the Hit Parade, and stayed there for nine weeks. As a result, “Paradise Road” became assimilated as South Africa’s unofficial national anthem. Composed by Patric van Blerk and Fransua Roos, “Paradise Road” was performed flawlessly, sweetly and majestically by the female musical trio of Felicia Marian, Thoka Ndiozi, and Anneline Malebo. “There are better roads before us….” Indeed, yes, there were, and are.
5. Weekend Special – Brenda Fassie
Anti-apartheid Afropop performer, Brenda Fassie was an extremely popular South African performer, humanitarian and activist, and is often considered as the “Queen of African Pop”. Her performance of “Weekend Special” is considered by many of her fans as a fun and smooth, jazzy dance song. A pure, classic pop song, with Fassie’s groove sure to move you across the dance floor, as she welcomes you into the weekend. “Weekend Special” with its traditional tribal beats infused with techno pop, is known as a song that helped make Fassie tremendously popular on the music scene.
4. Chocolate Toffee – Saitana (1976)
Saitana, a.k.a, Monty Ndimande was a treasure to South African music, and his light blew out too quickly. His rendition of “Chocolate Toffee” is psychedelic, with the influences of Joplin, Hendrix and Zepplin keenly felt. Loud, complex, and never boring, Saitana’s “Chocolate Toffee” is a unique blend of South African cultural influence, with solid, experimental rock. The intro of “Chocolate Toffee”, from Saitana’s album, “Jenakuru”, is dark, intriguing and draws you in, as you want to hear more from this forgotten musical genius.
3. Soundtracks and Comebacks – Goldfish (2008)
Goldfish is a South African duo made up of jazz musicians, Dominic Peters and David Poole. Their energetic track, “Soundtracks and Comebacks”, comes off the much celebrated 2008 album, “Perceptions of Pacha”, which won Best Dance Album at the South African Music Awards of 2009. Smart, sassy and full of life, “Soundtracks and Comebacks” expresses the core of their jazz dance sound, combining sax and double bass. Favorites around the world, Goldfish is always on the move, while at home, South African radio continues to support and play their music.
2. Hemel van die Platteland (Heaven in the Countryside) -Fokofpolisiekar (2004)
Fokofpolisiekar, or FPK for short, is an Afrikaans alternative rock group from South Africa. “Hemel van die Platteland” was produced in 2004, and marked the beginning of the Belville movement by attracting other rock artists, such as Die Heuwels Fantasties. FPK was decidedly instrumental in making solid rock music in Afrikaans, cool. This track is loud, intense and powerful, with Badenhorsts vocals shouting a war cry for the end of conformity, apathy and bland acceptance of fate, while Johnny de Ridder guitar work thrashes the listener. Definitely not for the faint of heart, and not for the timid, FPK treads the controversial threads with grace and strength.
1. Pata Pata – Miriam Makeba
Miriam Makeba, also known affectionately by South Africans as ‘Mama Africa’, was a South African performer, humanitarian and human rights activist. During the 1960’s, it was Miriam Makeba who was among the first South African performers to get the music of South Africa out and into the world. “Pata Pata” (soft touch) was originally written and performed in 1957 by South African artist, Dorothy Masuka. However, it was Miriam Makeba’s 1967 release that turned it into an international hit, and made the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 at number 12. Jaunty, fun and energetic, with a classic beat, made for dancing and good times.
South Africa continues to develop both politically and philosophically, and in doing so, becoming a country of strong, independent and good people. The variety of musical sounds that emanate from their country is quite telling of the overall bravery of its people, as they go forth to create a world for themselves and their children.