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Over 50 prominent artists came together to record a tribute to Johnny Clegg, a true South African legend who has made and continues to make an indelible mark on music history.
Last night the song and accompanying video for “The Crossing”, filmed at the gathering in September, were played to Johnny for the very first time at a private event where he performed for friends and lifelong fans at the luxury boutique hotel, Ellerman House in Bantry Bay, Cape Town.
Paul Bruce-Brand, Ellerman House’s General Manager and passionate music lover said, “This was an extremely unique, powerful performance which culminated in one of our final ‘Ellerman Sessions’ of the year. These intimate sessions embrace South African talent with fervour, offering a series of personal-storytelling evenings with local icons, from platinum-selling musicians to award-winning chefs. What a story Johnny Clegg has to share – filled with emotional tales of struggle and hardship, yet characterised by an overriding sense of joy, humour, hope and passion for this country.”
When the special version of “The Crossing” was unveiled Johnny Clegg remarked, “I am speechless, thank you so much. This is an amazing moment for me – to have so many of my peers acknowledge the song and its sentiments, and that they can use that to further something much bigger than all of us. Thank you.”
Paul Harris, owner Ellerman House, Karen Zoid, Johnny Clegg and Kahn Morbee. Pic by Jonty Quenet
The same evening saw the launch of Friends of Johnny Clegg, a fund created in Johnny’s honour to help alleviate the education crisis in South Africa. All proceeds from downloads of this special version of “The Crossing” will go toward this fund. These proceeds will be distributed by the Click Foundation, which targets young learners with an online phonetics-based programme in centres across the country, ultimately aimed at creating a better future for the youth of South Africa — a cause close to Johnny’s heart.
Watch the official music video directed by Carien Loubser of Brainwave Productions and the video of an unforgettable evening at Ellerman House by Etched Space.
For behind-the-scenes images of artists at the recording and images of the handover, click here. The song is available for download on all digital platforms including Apple Music, iTunes, Google Playstore, Spotify and Deezer.
All proceeds go directly to the Friends of Johnny Clegg Fund. For more information on how to support the cause, please visit the website www.friendsofjohnnyclegg.co.za.