South African Vocalist Sathima Bea Benjamin and Daughter, Hip Hop Artist Jean Grae, Share the Stage

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The legendary South African jazz singer Sathima Bea Benjamin will perform at New York's Sweet Rhythm Jazz Club on Wednesday, January 23. Sathima's daughter, the underground hip hop artist Jean Grae, will appear as a special guest. The performance celebrates the CD reissue of Sathima Bea Benjamin's debut album, the Duke Ellington-produced A Morning in Paris.

The legendary South African jazz vocalist Sathima Bea Benjamin's career has been marked by a number of brilliant collaborations, including albums with Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, her husband Abdullah Ibrahim, Kenny Barron, and more. However, on Wednesday, January 23 at New York's Sweet Rhythm Jazz Club, Sathima will team up with a brand new partner: her daughter, the New York-based hip hop artist Jean Grae, who will appear that night as a special guest. This performance marks the first time the two have performed together.

Writing of her mother, Jean Grae describes Sathima as "understood and praised by jazz purists and scholars, those of us who believe in honest and beautiful music and weep at the moment a note pulls at our heartstrings. This woman is a force and the reason I do what I do. Even when I want to stop. The only reason I exist and the music that I make exists."

The performance at Sweet Rhythm, also featuring an all-star jazz line up of pianist Stephen Scott, bassist Buster Williams, and drummer George Gray, will also celebrate the CD reissue of Sathima's debut album, A Morning in Paris, which was recorded in 1963 and features on piano three legendary jazz musicians: Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, and Sathima's husband, Abdullah Ibrahim. The album will be in stores Tuesday, January 22, 2008, and is distributed through City Hall Records.

Described by Jazztimes as "South Africa's greatest jazz singer," the Grammy-nominated Sathima Bea Benjamin has established herself as a master interpreter of American jazz standards, having recorded and collaborated with some of the most legendary figures in jazz. In 2004, President Thabo Mbeki recognized Sathima's work in jazz and support of the exiled ANC during apartheid, and awarded her the Order of Ikhamanga, South Africa's highest honor. In October 2007, she celebrated her 71st birthday with a performance at New York's Sweet Rhythm jazz club.

For more information and updates, visit Sathima's MySpace page at


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