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Ladysmith Black Mambazo: Long Walk to Freedom

It’s a “greatest hits” package with a marvelous twist, as the South African collective surveys its three-decade career with fresh recordings featuring a multicultural assortment of A-list guests. Actually, though, “greatest messages” provides far more accurate delineation of these 13 reworked classics from the Joseph Shabalala-led freedom fighters.

Best known of the baker’s dozen tracks are “Homeless” and “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes,” two of the Paul Simon-penned tunes that helped transformed Ladysmith Black Mambazo into an international (and subsequently Grammy-winning) sensation when showcased on Simon’s landmark Graceland in 1986. Here both are provided with heightened grace, thanks to the respective addition of Sarah McLachlan and Melissa Etheridge.

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