Sunday, March 3, 2024


It Has To Be Jazz®

I was one day invited to a poetry extravaganza night. What I was not told was that there was going to be some music. Actually, different acts which included music and poetry, poetry on its own and just live music performance. Typical adventurous me just went with no expectation. The invitation came from Mmakgosi Ophadile Anita Tau, one of the most compelling youth female poets of our times.

Different acts took to the stage until finally Mmakgosi came on stage with an acoustic guitarist she introduced as Teacobouy Teezmalt ÔÇôobviously, a stage name but his real names are Tiego Bouyson Seitshiro. When both a poet and guitarist are that good, I often get confused as I need to divide my attention between the 2 of them. Teacobouy left a lasting impression on me with his unique style of play. I am certain you will find it hard, as I did then, to classify it under any specific genre. The next logical step for me was to find him on social media for 2 reasons; the first being to follow his music while the second and the most important was to follow his career development.

I must admit, it was not until recently that I started keeping serious taps on his social media page. He started showcasing the other side of him which is related to music but does not involve playing it. So, it was time to turn it up a notch ÔÇô investigate the whole ‘Teacobouy Package’. I gave him a call in the early hours of the morning for the purpose of establishing a possible meeting. In his humble unassuming voice, he confirmed for 5:30pm.

We met and exchanged pleasantries and followed by a brief introduction. I explained, hopefully in detail, what the It Has To Be Jazz┬« project is really all about. Next it was his turn. In all honesty, it was more his meeting than mine. I watched him as he clasped his hands and stretched them out as though a pianist about to unleash a concerto in front of audience in an opera theatre. His passion for a guitar started very early like in the majority of cases. Fortunately, his father recognised this incredible gift and bought him a guitar. So, it was pretty much a surprise. He strikes me as a very emotional person by nature because when he described that moment, when he was handed over the guitar, I could tell he was reliving it all over again. I liked his sense of humour. He cracked a joke to the effect that the guitar was bigger and taller than him. Since he had no clue how to play it properly and the necessary technical information such as tuning, he was just happy to listen to what sounded, to him, like a ‘beautiful sound.’ However, that time was short-lived because when he went to secondary school, he took a break from his new found toy. But his passion for a guitar and music in particular never died.

The real moment of truth hit him when he discovered a university gospel band that played guitars and he took a fancy on them and asked to join them. However, there were a few complications. At this point he shared a story that had all the characteristics of a resilient person. He went for music lessons but he could only afford one lesson and when that happened, YouTube channel became his best friend. As expected, his sense of humour took over as he was describing the story behind a book entitled Guitar Lessons For Dummies. We both laughed it off and went back to our conversation. Learning at this stage was a bit of a challenge because he is ambidextrous and the exorbitant price of guitar for a left-handed person did not help. But being the resourceful person that he is he settled for a standard one.

The YouTube results were only the beginning of his new journey of discovering himself and his true potential. The material was good enough to a point where he started offering tuition for free to start with. I suppose it was a confidence building exercise more than anything else. It is at this stage that he discovered a pool of committed students which inspired a notion of a band. I am glad that his hard work paid off. Harmonic Angel came into existence. One would have generally assumed that it should be Angels because it was a trio. But there is a good explanation and that is, singular of angel symbolised unity and single spiritedness.

He took a break from the trio to specifically pursue his interest in developing training material for a guitar. He made such an impact in the market that he was subsequently commissioned by the Botswana Government to be part of the entourage that was headed for an exhibition in Germany. It was a totally different setup which offered him an opportunity to view his musical career from a different perspective. While on tour he composed a song simply dubbed Sempekhubidu, which brought out the best in his singing gift. This is something he had not envisaged before and ever since he has never stopped singing. This also meant he could no longer be in the background during performances but take the lead. It is a good thing that not only did he develop his musical leadership but also focused his new-found leadership skills in other areas of his business interest. He has been developing online guitar training material and the project is at its final stage and should go live soon.

This is a man with so much energy and frankly I admire him for that. He has a normal 8 to 5 job, continues to develop himself and his training products. Even with his busy schedule he still finds time for his fully registered band, Lor Folk Ban.

So, why did Teacobouy make the It Has To Be Jazz┬« project review? Once in a while, not always, you are humbled by sheer tenacity, determination and the will to fight in others! No matter the circumstances. Teacobouy is a young vibrant musician. If half the musicians I have met, so far, were just as inspired, the jazz world would be a totally different ball game. Watch this space as I continue to unpack this fine musician for you.


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