Don Laka

Real Name:
Donald Mahwetša Laka
Profile:
South African jazz musician, producer and pianist, born in 1958 near Pretoria in Mamelodi.

In 1969 he formed his first band and made his first recording in 1972 which featured Ray Phiri on guitar. After matriculating in 1978 he started formal music lessons, obtaining his licentiate in high school music teaching in 1979. From 1980 to 1981 he joined the afro-fusion group Sakhile that was formed by Sipho Gumede and Khaya Mahlangu. The group revolutionized South African music, and set a trend for groups like Bayete. Don recorded his first big hit with a group called "Oneness" before moving to form his own band with Sello Twala, called "Ymage". In the ten years that this group existed they recorded no less than 12 LPs, and in 1986 they were spotted by top producer Tony Visconti.

During the same period Don ventured into recording solo LPs and producing other artists. His songs and piano playing proved to be popular with other musicians such as Brenda Fassie, who then asked if he could write, produce or perform on their records.

Don also co-launched the record company that was to become Kalawa Jazmee (he's the "LA" part), initially selling records from the boot of their cars before forming a bigger structure, and he has most recently launched "Kwai-jazz" label Bokone Music.
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Albums

RG (E) 1033 Don Laka - Going Crazy album art Donald Laka* Going Crazy(LP, Album) Ring (2) RG (E) 1033 South Africa 1982 Sell This Version
Don Laka - I Wanna Be Myself album art Don Laka I Wanna Be Myself (Album) Transistor (2) South Africa 1984 Sell This Version
Don Laka - Smile album art Don Laka Smile (Album) Gallo South Africa 1987 Sell This Version
DMB 9030 Don Laka - Lost Time album art Don Laka Lost Time(LP, Album) D.P.M.C DMB 9030 South Africa 1991 Sell This Version
CDCOL 8025 (N) Don Laka -  Destiny album art Don Laka Destiny(CD) Columbia CDCOL 8025 (N) South Africa 1996 Sell This Version
Don Laka - Umoja - The Spirit Of Togetherness - Original Cast Recording album art Various Featuring Hugh Masekela, McCoy Mrubata, Don Laka Various Featuring Hugh Masekela, McCoy Mrubata, Don Laka - Umoja - The Spirit Of Togetherness - Original Cast Recording (Album) Sting Music South Africa 2001 Sell This Version
Don Laka - Supernova album art Don Laka Supernova (Album) Epic 1998 Sell This Version
2575BC Don Laka - Pyramid album art Don Laka Pyramid(CD) Jupiter Records 2575BC South Africa 2001 Sell This Version
CDBK(WL)01 Don Laka - Paradise album art Don Laka Paradise(CD, Album) Pokone Music CDBK(WL)01 South Africa 2003 Sell This Version
CDBK27 ON Don Laka - Poison album art Don Laka Poison(CD, Album, Dig) Gallo Record Company CDBK27 ON South Africa 2010 Sell This Version
CDBK30 Don Laka - Afro Chopin album art Don Laka Afro Chopin(CD, Album) Bokone Music CDBK30 South Africa 2015 Sell This Version

Singles & EPs

12CBK(C) 5011 Don Laka - Let's Celebrate album art Don Laka Let's Celebrate(12", Maxi) Transistor (2) 12CBK(C) 5011 South Africa 1984 Sell This Version
12 CBK C 5010 Don Laka - Lets Move The Night album art Don Laka Lets Move The Night(12", Maxi) Transistor (2) 12 CBK C 5010 South Africa 1984 Sell This Version
Don Laka - Stages Of Love album art Don Laka Stages Of Love (EP) Gallo South Africa 1986 Sell This Version

Videos (15) Edit