Upstairs in the Township by Barney Rachabane

Purchase this album at

Upstairs in the Township was Barney’’s last album created in a studio somewhere around 2010. As the studio went under, Barney salvaged a pile of DVDs of the recording sessions.

In 2014 he gave these DVDs to me and said “please help me – what can we do?”

The rescued DVDs from which this release was recreated are not audio files, nor video, 10000s of data files – in fact 4GB of material that we sifted through over years. I am talking about the separates, different files, 10s of thousands of files – unlabelled and dumped in a hurry during the closing of that studio. These were reconstituted over the span of two – three years into the ten songs you hear on the album. To be clear Upstairs in the Township is therefore one album from one incomplete recording session. Our initial aim was to find the funds to complete it properly to Barney’s specifications, but time ran out – and funding was never available. There were no details of performers available for this recording. Hence all attribution is to Barney Rachabane as producer arranger and performer.

The opening track Ritual Serenade is a special tribute. The over-dubbing of Octavia and Thantaswa onto the original Serenade song was an exercise in healing, which poet Vusi Mchunu and Neil Passage One Studios brilliantly facilitated. It was a success that was orchestrated and followed the traditional Pedi healing ritual that Octavia and family underwent.

As a music education and heritage intervention, has successfully assisted many of South African creatives in releasing their expressions. creates action and interventions from the philosophical foundation of ubuntu – togetherness, and is grateful to offer this project to the Rachabane family as a popular product to hep bring in much needed resources during this time of need. Find the album online or physical copies direct from Octavia : enquire at

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