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Abdullah Ibrahim Biography


Abdullah Ibrahim is a South African pianist and composer. His music reflects many of the musical influences of his childhood in the multicultural port areas of Cape Town, ranging from traditional African songs to the gospel of the AME Church and Ragas, to more modern jazz and other Western styles.

Ibrahim is considered the leading figure in the subgenre of Cape jazz. Within jazz, his music particularly reflects the influence of Thelonious Monk and Duke Ellington. He is known especially for “Mannenberg”, a jazz piece that became a notable anti-apartheid anthem.

Abdullah Ibrahim

BORN: 9 October 1934 (age 87)

HOME TOWN: Cape Town, South Africa

PARENT: Rachel (mother) and Baptised Adolph Johannes Brand (father)

SPOUSE: Sathima Bea Benjamin (m. 1965–2011)

CHILDREN: Jean Grae, Tsakwe Brand

OCCUPATION: Jazz musician, Jazz Pianist, Bandleader, Film Score Composer, Saxophonist

NICKNAME(S): Dollar Brand

AWARDS: South African Music Award for Lifetime Achievement (2007)…

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