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Johnny Clegg



Johnny Clegg is one of South Africa’s most celebrated sons. He is a singer, a songwriter, a dancer, anthropologist and a musical activist whose infectious crossover music, a vibrant blend of Western pop and African Zulu rhythms, has exploded onto the international scene and broken through all the barriers in his own country. In France, where he enjoys a massive following, he is fondly called Le Zulu Blanc – the white Zulu.
Over three decades, Johnny Clegg has sold over five million albums of his brand of crossover music worldwide. He has wowed vast audiences with his audacious live shows and won a number of national and international awards for his music and for his outspoken views on apartheid, his perspectives on migrant workers in South Africa and the general situation in the world today. Johnny Clegg’s history is as bold, colourful and dashing as the rainbow country which he has called home for more than 40 years.
International Awards
1988 The Mayor’s Office of Los Angeles Award: For the promotion of racial harmony?1988 Le Victoire French Music Industry Award for biggest International record album sold in France between 1987 and 1988 (1.3 million albums)?1989 Honorary Citizen of the town of Angouleme, France?1990-1991 French Music Industry Award for the biggest selling world music album in France?1990 Humanitarian Award: Secretary of State of Ohio, USA?1991 Awarded the CHEVALIER DE L’ORDRE DES ARTS ET DES LETTRES (Knight of Arts and Letters) by the French Government?1993 GRAMMY AWARD nomination for best World Music Album (Heat, Dust and Dreams)?1994 Billboard Music Award Best World Music Album?1996 Medal of Honour - city of Besancon?1998 Kora Awards: Best African Group?2004 Mayoral Medal of Honour from Mayor of Lyon, France, for outstanding relations between the people of Lyon and South Africa?2004 Medal of Honour – Consul General of the Province of Nievre?2004 Medal of Honour – Consul General of the Province of L’Aisne
South African Awards
1986 Scotty Award : Master Music Maker?1987 Communication Contribution Award?1987 The Autumn Harvest Music Personality Award?1988 OK TV Best Pop Music Award?1988 CCP Record Special Award : In recognition of exceptional achievement in promotion of South African music internationally?1989 Radio 5 - Loud & Proud Award - South African Music Ambassador of the Year?1990 FOYSA Award (Four Outstanding South Africans) Junior Chamber of Commerce?1999 Avanti Award - Best Music Video “Crocodile Love”

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What's Up at the Belly Up this week features Johnny Clegg! He is one of South Africa’s most celebrated singers, dancers, anthropologist and a musical activist! We talked about blending Western pop with African Zulu rhythms, touring with his son Jesse, and received demonstrations on several different instruments from the man himself including a MOUTH BOW! This was also filmed for our TV show, Live at the Belly Up on KPBS. We drank water but it felt intoxicating because of how interesting Clegg is as a musician, person and teacher.




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