John Bhengu

John Bhengu

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Umakotshasha (Zulu) [South Africa]


John Bhengu


Although only introduced to South Africa in the 16th century, the guitar was readily adapted by Zulu singers, who found that it complemented, rather than diluted, their vocal styles. John Bhengu's innovation, starting in the 1950s, was to move from strumming the guitar to picking, an art that he performed with virtuoso skill, and which became known as "ukupika." Bhengu later turned to the electric guitar, with which he enjoyed an equally huge success. ~ Leon Jackson

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