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South Africa music acts prepare to wow Obama at inauguration

posted 20 Jan 2013, 15:02 by Mpelembe   [ updated 20 Jan 2013, 15:02 ]

South African musical groups are thrilled to be chosen to perform at the White House for U.S. President Barack Obama's second inauguration.

JOHANNESBURGSOUTH AFRICA  (OTAREL MUSIC) -  South African musical acts are set to dazzle American president Barack Obamaat his inauguration on Monday (January 21). Award-winning singer Lira and house group trio Micasa are billed to perform alongside hitmakers Beyonce and Kelly Clarksonamongst others.

South African singer Lira, who uses both English and Xhosa, in her lyrics, is one of the country's best known artists having performed in Europe and other parts of the world. Xhosa is one of the official languages spoken in South Africa.

"What are the chances of being invited to come perform for Barrack Obama's inauguration um...I don't know how they found out but you know we are just honoured to have received this invitation. We were all meant to the off for the whole of January, it's been a tough, busy, incredibly intense 2012 and we wanted to take January off to just regroup and of course when this came through we all promptly adjusted our plans for January and immediately made plans to to travel." said Lira.

Obama will still be sworn in publicly outside the U.S. Capitol on Monday with all the traditional pomp. Technically, Sunday is the only one that really counts according to the Constitution, which mandates that the president be sworn in on January 20. Compared to the momentous atmosphere of Obama's first inauguration, the mood will be different on this occasion.

Though this time the crowds are expected to be smaller, for Lira it is an opportunity of a life time.

"We are very grateful, we feel like we just so blessed to be able to do what we do and now we get to perform for an incredible icon of our time, America's first black president. It is quite epic, I think just as a South Africa, I dont know. it just blows my mind. I don't know what we did right in our lives to deserve such an honour." she said.

Micasa which comprises of a vocalist, trumpeter and a club DJ are a young group that has been together for almost two years but have already made their mark in the South African musical scene. They will be performing in America for the first time

"It's like when you hear something and it's like this can't be true, so yah. It has been one of those mind blowing things that we just can't wait to get there represent South Africaand Africa as a whole," said Micasa's front man J Something.

The group infuses soulful sounds with house beats to create a new sound that is distinctively South African.