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Chris McGregor Biography, Wiki, Songs

Chris McGregor Biography

Chris McGregor was born on 24th December 1936 in Somerset West in South Africa and died on 26th May 1990 in Agen, France. He was a South African jazz pianist, band leader and composer.

Chris McGregor Career

During World War II, his father joined the Navy and Chris moved to stay with his mother in Cape Town. It was during his stay in Cape Town that he took his first piano lessons. He also became exposed to the music of the army marching around.
On his return to the Transkei, he continued his musical education in uMthatha where he became exposed to mbaqanga and kwela styles of music.He established a vocal group with friends from uMthatha high school.
In 1956 McGregor won a scholarship to the University of Cape Town’s College of Music to study music where upon admission he focused his studies on composition
In the late 50s McGregor played the piano in the “Cup and Saucers” Nkanuka, and also linked up with other artists. He performed particularly with Cup and Saucers in Langa, Simonstown, Atholone and Gugulethu. McGregor then established his groups ‘The Blue Notes’.
The Blue Notes became very successful despite the apartheid laws of the country at the time which forbade mixed race groups and mixed race performances. The band’s members kept changing as members left and were replaced by new ones. Alongside the Blue Notes, McGregor found another group, The Castle Lager Big band which comprised of seventeen members including Dudu Pukwana. The band produced an album titled: Jazz: The African Sound.

Chris McGregor Songs

  • Mra
  • Bakwetha
  • Big G
  • Union Special
  • Night Poem
  • Mngqusho
  • Eclipse at Dawn
  • Ghoema Song
  • I Remember Billy
  • Paljas
  • Davashe S Dream
  • Lighthouse in the Sky
  • Kippie
  • In His Good Time
  • Marie My Dear / Travelling Somewhere
  • The Bride
  • Don’t Stir the Beehive
  • Thunder in the Mountain
  • Kwa Tebugo
  • The Sound’s Begin Again / White Lies
  • Daeraad
  • Sophia
  • Heart’s Vibrations
  • Sing Tomorrow
  • Rock Lobster
  • Now
  • More Fish in the Sea
  • To the Boats
  • Fish Galore!
  • Overture to Act 2
  • Umhome
  • Yikiti