The 2015 MTN Bushfire Festival was set-alight by multiple performers from various countries. This year's installment of the festival saw an array of international acts setting stages ablaze. Among the artists on the line-up were South African bands such The Parlotones, Bongeziwe Mabandla, an Australian band Black Jesus Experience blend traditional Ethiopian music along with modern hip-hop and funk grooves.
Freshly Ground blessed the on-lookers with their soulful anthem “Nomvula” plus a taste from their latest offering. Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness (BCUC) From Soweto; moved the audience both physically and emotionally with a sound derived straight from our ancestral lineage and demystifies the general worldviews about modern Africa.
Headline acts Les Nubians best known for their billboard R&B Single “Makeda” from their Grammy-nominated album [Princesses Nubiennes] had people cheering in delight and surprised the crowd when they joined Freshly Ground on stage to perform “Africa for the Future”; a song which Les Nubians featured the South African band in their 2011 album, “NU REVOLUTION”. Les Nubians are one of the most successful French speaking bands and proved it with a stellar performance. Adjectives fail to describe the magnificence of the picturesque evening.
Swaziland’s weather was fair and warm to the exodus arriving from cold Johannesburg. The fest witnessed as thousands of visitors; [of] different shades and ethnicity journeyed through Mbabane’s scenic route, with its green mountains serving as the perfect background for selfie-loving-Installment-chasing patrons.
Dozens opted to camp at the Malkerns Valley sugar cane farm, families made marshmallows at the fire, travelers from all around the continent danced around the same fire, lovers lied on the ground ogling at a star –filled sky and some first-time goers described the experience as something “Out Of This world!”. The food bazaar ensured that munchies of all appetites were catered to plus souvenir seekers were kept intrigued at market places lined with crafts and traditional Swati fabrics.
The House On Fire amphitheater was illuminated with sounds of what one would assume to be records streamed from a higher power’s playlist. One such an iconic band was Projecto Transito, an acoustic journey of discovery between musicians of varied cultural origins using traditional instruments from around the world.
Chude Mondlane’s vocals formed a vibration that possibly medicated spirit and mind of whoever was ill and in earshot. In these times of Xenophobia and tension among Africans; Bushfire is a great example of how an idea that can turn African neighbors into brothers, but also inviting the world to our doorstep and gathering people to form a united global family.