Deardra Shuler talks with lyricist Chaka Ngwenya, the founder of SARFM Radio, an Internet Radio broadcast formerly stationed in Harlem, with flutist Brian Delma Taylor and with percussionist Bashiri Johnson about their Orphan project and colloborative song "The Orphan Song."
Born in Zimbabwe in Southern Africa, Ngwenya was a radio and tv personality in his homeland. Once in the USA, he started SARFM Radio and became a youth pastor with the Salvation Army. His work with youth prompted him to reach out to less fortunate children throughout the world, giving birth to his Orphan Song. Artists such as Daisy Jopling, Oliver Mtukudzi, Bakithi Kumalo, Thomas Mapfumo and Bashiri Johnson have contributed their talents to the song.
Bashiri Johnson is a Brooklynite who always felt the music and natural rhythms that came at him from everywhere. He grew up in the 60s grovin on The Last Poets, Malcolm X, Sly Stone, James Brown, the Panthers and Cream. He worked with Mtume and with Stephanie Mills on her gold record, "Whatcha Gonna Do with My Lovin."
A graduate of Juilliard,Texan Brian Delma Taylor, is a veteran Broadway, symphonic and jazz multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, composer, arranger and producer. A flutist, he was the Grand Prize Winner of six national and international concerto competitions. A flute soloist in Miss Saigon, Gigi and 1976,Taylor has done numerous soundtrack recordings as soloist and vocalist. He appeared in Annie as Warbucks and in The Odd Couple as Felix.
For info on Orphan Song visit: www.music4orphans.com
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