Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Lorraine Lionheart holds her own in charity concert

“I think music is the greatest art form that exists, and I think people listen to music for different reasons, and it serves different purposes. Some of it is background music, and some of it is things that might affect a person’s day, if not their life, or change an attitude. The best songs are the ones that make you feel something.”

American rocker, HYPERLINK “http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/e/eddie_vedder.html”Eddie Vedder’s words perfectly describe both Lorraine Lionheart’s deep-rooted fusion of tswana folklore music and her selfless desire to dedicate her talent, time and resources to give back to the less fortunate.

They say you are as good as your last performance and after Saturday night’s performance at Westwood International School, the UK-based songstress can go back overseas with her head held high.

Granted, the attendance was relatively disappointing especially for a charity event but thankfully Lionheart knows wowing the crowd, no matter how small, from the stage is definitely a priority at any gig.

If you play the best show of your life and only five people paid in, your good performance will be entrenched in the minds of the small crowd and in the long run guarantee more shows.

Although she seemed understandably nervous at first, her anxiety seemed to have mellowed midway through her first song, ‘Selina’, which she says she once performed together with Banjo Mosele in Oslo, Norway .

One of the things one may appreciate about Lionheart’s on stage performance is how she shares the story and lets the crowd appreciate the meaning behind every song she performs.

And because most of the songs are remakes of our popular Setswana folk music it was easy for the crowed to identify with it and for the elders, the show was nostalgically reminiscent of the good old times. Her fourth performance of the night was yet another popular song, ‘Mmapula.’

“This is a song about rain. Coincidentally every time I sang this song in the UK it would rain and because it rains so much that people get fed up with rain, someone literally begged me not to play the song anymore,” she said.

She also played ‘My African Song’, ‘About A Girl’ and a crowd favorite, ‘Solomon’, which she had to perform all over again thanks to calls from the audience asking for an encore.

Despite having lived for over a decade overseas, Lionheart’s music has incredibly deep Setswana roots which she says she dug up from her own childhood. Musical roots buried in the dusty soils of the Kalahari Desert where she grew up.

You cannot fake the music. You might be a great singer or a great musician but in the end, that has nothing to do with it. It is how you connect, relate and identify with the songs and the history behind them that you can come up with such brilliant fusion as Lorrain Lionheart did. Artists can utilize music not just to line their own pockets but to; bring about change; to bring up the force of compassion, forgiveness and kindness; and all things that bind us together as a society. It is through artists like Lionheart, in their quest to help the less fortunate, that we can resuscitate the compassionate and caring culture that used to characterize our nation.


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