Multi-award-winning composer and pianist Bokani Dyer is set to launch his fourth studio album, Neo Native, an intimate listening experience and a reimagination of the sound of the standard piano trio.
Dyer’s trio has made up his performance outfit for the past two years. It includes Sphelelo Mazibuko (drums) and Romy Brauteseth (bass), and together with Dyer, have forged a sound in which all members are at home in the music – allowing the freedom for new interpretation at each performance. It’s evident from the music on Neo Native that these three share a strong chemistry.
The 14-track album features new material, as well as interpretations of works from previous albums like Emancipate the Story (2011) and World Music (2015).
“Neo Native is an idea about identity. How one chooses to identify and question what a person feels connected to as ‘native’. In the human experience beyond geography, where does the feeling of home reside?”, asks Dyer.
The pianist has been a leading voice in the new wave of young contemporary jazz musicians in South Africa in recent times. In 2009, he won a scholarship for further study in the SAMRO Overseas Scholarship Competition; in 2011 he was awarded the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Jazz, and in 2013 he managed to clinch first place in the SAMRO Overseas Scholarship Competition.
Past albums well received
“Compositions, playing and the consistency of Dyer’s voice and vision make Emancipate the Story one of my top albums of the year,” wrote Gwen Ansell in Business Day.
“His own vision of this ideal is based on musical egalitarianism, or, as noted on his own website, ‘a celebration of all music with no borders.’ And while that may seem too lofty a goal, he does a remarkable job seeing it through here. Nothing is off limits as Dyer uses his pen and piano to craft a musical Esperanto of sorts,” wrote Dan Bilawsky in All about Jazz
May 2018 album launches
3 May – The Orbit Jazz Club, Joburg
4 May – The Chairman, Durban
5 May – Nassau Centre, Groote Schuur High School, Cape Town
6 May – Guga S’thebe, Langa, Cape Town
Who: Bokani Dyer Trio
What: Neo Native launch 2018
Available: Online 16 May 2018, South African stores early May