Essential to the goal of making South African swing music more available to a larger audience, is capturing the stories that surround it: the artist biographies, the song meanings, and the historical context in which this music was originally created and enjoyed. We sought to do this through the album liner notes and the creation of an online resource (you’re … Read More



Inspired by the visuals of Drum magazine and the iconic photos of 1950s Sophiatown, we sought to incorporate art into the celebration of South African swing music. We curated an art exhibition with Youngblood Art Gallery in Cape Town to coincide with the album launch during the Mother City Hop festival. We asked local artists to submit any form of … Read More



The absence of sheet music and high-quality original recordings for original South African swing songs is a major barrier to preserving and celebrating the genre. The primary goal of our 2018 crowdfunding campaign was therefore to make South African swing music more available and accessible for anyone to dance to, listen to, and play, and by: 1) transcribing a selection … Read More

Project Goals: Preserve, Revive, Celebrate


With so much history, knowledge, and culture at stake, the the aim of the Echoes project is to pay tribute to the musicians, dancers, and other South Africans who were part of the swing era, and ensure that their legacy lives on for a new audience of jazz lovers, history buffs, cultural aficionados, and swing dancers.  As an organization dedicated to … Read More

A little history: Sophiatown


Like the Harlem neighbourhood of New York that ushered in the wave rise of African American art, music, and literature during the 1920s Harlem Renaissance, Sophiatown was the centre of South African jazz culture from the 1930s-50s. Known as Little Harlem, it was the training grounds for jazz legends like Hugh Masekela, Miriam Makeba, Dolly Rathebe, and Spokes Mashiyane. And it was the … Read More

Echoes on Fine Music Radio

sarahNews, News-Stories, The Journey

Last week we sat down with Rodney Trudgeon of Fine Music Radio, Cape Town’s premier station for classical and jazz music, to talk about the Echoes of Sophiatown album. What a joy to be invited to share more about the production of the album and bring this music to a new audience! Rodney brought us in as part of his … Read More

Campaign Update: The perks are coming!

sarahProject, The Journey

Hi folks, Now that the Echoes of Sophiatown album is officially available, we are rolling out the rest of our Echoes gear so your perks are on their way! A couple notes: Shipping AddressesWe are in the process of confirming the international addresses – we know that some people have moved since they donated and others did not give an address. If … Read More

Get your Echoes album now!

sarahMusic, News, News-Stories, The Journey

The Echoes of Sophiatown tribute album is now available for sale in the Cape Town Swing online shop! Featuring 12 finger-snapping tunes from our transcription project performed by Cape Town’s favorite swing band, the Pebble Shakers, the album is available on CD and vinyl. The selection of songs featured on the album represent the breadth of artists and jazz legends … Read More

Bra Hugh makes the Google Doodle

sarahNews, News-Stories

Just days after the Cape Town Jazz Festival – arguably South Africa’s biggest jazz bash of the year – legend Hugh Masekela has gone global on the Google’s daily doodle!