Lorraine Klaasen, daughter of the legendary South African jazz singer Thandie Klaasen, is among the few South African artists who have maintained the classic townships sound, which remains the most distinctive style the country has produced. Born and raised in Soweto, now living in Montréal, Lorraine Klaasen has electrified audiences around the world with her dynamic stage presence and showmanship.
In 2008, Lorraine Klaasen recorded the album Africa Calling. In collaboration with South African producer Mongezi Chris Ntaka and bass player Bakhiti Khumalo (who took part in the recording of Paul Simon’s famous Graceland disc), Lorraine fulfilled her childhood dream of making classic townships musical styles known worldwide, creating a truly African album that would reach the hearts and souls of people everywhere.
Her CD A Tribute To Miriam Makeba earned Lorraine Klaasen a Juno Award in 2013 in the “World music album of the year” category as well as a nomination for an APCMA Award in the “Best international aboriginal artist” category. The album pays tribute to the legendary singer, one of the greatest vocalists South Africa has ever produced.
Lorraine Klaasen’s ambitious new project is a 2017 Juno Award-nominated album titled Nouvelle Journée featuring several musical styles that the artist had not recorded before in the course of her long career. She sings in the Tsonga, Sotho, isiZulu and Xhosa languages of South Africa, in addition to pieces performed in English or French. The repertory of Nouvelle Journée is devised to inspire reflection, emphasizing the importance of family, love and hope. The disc is optimistic and danceable while remaining a lucid, sincere and engaging work. Her recent performances include shows at the prestigious Montréal International Jazz Festival, the Festival International Nuits D’Afrique, and the Music of the Rainbow Nation and Homage to Miriam Makeba events in Toronto, as well as shows in South Africa and a United States tour that was a true success.