After taking over from veteran jazz broadcaster, Uncle Shima Monageng, Tomeletso Sereetsi is now pushing the jazz music genre with his show called The Jazz Shed With Sereetsi.
The folk jazz outfit, Sereetsi & The Natives’ frontman, will go on air on Sundays from 5pm to 9pm on Gabz FM.
“Monageng did an awesome job with the programme. He has done a great deal of work in growing the culture of jazz and live music in Botswana in a radio career that spans decades. It is an honour to be today where he was. His are big shoes to fill!” the former journalist told Arts & Culture.
Sereetsi added that his show is a reflection of the changes and evolution of the music of jazz, blues and world music.
“While I hold the rich traditions of the music genres in due reverence, I am also excited about how they continue to evolve. I take keen interest in how my generation and newer generations are taking to the music and taking it to places it’s never been before. My interest in these developments is also to show that the music hasn’t stopped its experimental formative spirit,” he highlighted.
He also said that he plays a lot of these new stars who are headlining major festivals all over the world. “I want a show that respects the tradition, but also reflects the times. And these are wonderful times for jazz, blues and world music.” Sereetsi said the show is also deliberately focused on an increased Botswana content. He was quick to mention that he plays a lot of instrumental and vocal jazz from Botswana
“I believe that it is important for the programme to provide a platform for Botswana artists and to encourage the production of more works in the genre of jazz. It is also important to champion the recognition of the Botswana story by audiences through the programme,” he ventured.
The Mpopi hitmaker said listeners can also look forward to segments such as the Top 6 @ 6, which features a guest who picks his/her favourite jazz songs and tells why they love the tunes. Sereetsi also revealed that through the six songs they select, listeners get to express their relationship with the music and share special parts of their lives.
“This goes to show that jazz is a lifestyle. It’s not just a music genre. It impacts people’s lives. I also feature artist interviews and live performance sessions. I host jazz DJs on the show to play their own set as a way to recognise their role in growing the culture and promotion of live music in their communities such as at pubs and at weddings and parties,” he proudly said.
Sereetsi said that he comes armed with his experience as a musician who is actively playing both local and international jazz. In short he brings the world music scene to the show to the listenership. “Feedback has been great so far,” was his concluding remark.