Limpopo Groove is an established, upbeat, afro-fusion group for all ages and walks of life. Formed in 2009 by Tomson Chauke, they play infectious, lively music, inspired by their drummer and founder’s African homeland. With original songs written in Shona and English, they blend afro jazz with tribal beats and European influences to create catchy rhythms that crowds just can’t help dancing to.
Now Reading-based, Tomson (A.K.A. “T-Nice”) originally grew up in Chiredzi, a small town in the Masvingo province of Zimbabwe. In 2003, during a UK tour as part of Alick Macheso’s Orchestra Mberikwazvo, he chose to remain here and follow his own musical journey. Fast forward to 2009, when he took on lead vocals and drums to set up his own group with current solid-as-a-rock band member, James (A.K.A “Mr Limpopo”) on bass guitar, shortly followed by colourful fan-wielding co-writer, Maria on vocals and one of Zimbabwe’s traditional instruments, hosho shakers: mapudzi gourds filled with seeds.
In 2013, multi-instrumentalist and top-notch gentleman, Lawrie joined, adding his own jazzy blend to the mix, first on keys, then switching to guitar as they welcomed drummer and joker, Hamish on congas, keyboard, wrist shakers, whistle and anything else he can get a good sound out of! Within a couple of years, the current Limpopo family was born, as Annie added the icing with backing vocals, sexy saxophone and soothing flute tones.
Aiming not only to entertain, but to integrate cultures and reach out to an international audience by mixing European music with polyrhythms and a traditional Zimbabwean base, the band is named after the Limpopo river which flows through the borders of Zimbabwe, Mozambique, and South Africa before pouring into the Indian Ocean. Music is a universal language that helps break down barriers and build bridges, so as the river unites all these different countries, music too has the power to unite us, bringing communities together to learn about each other’s cultures and celebrate diversity. That’s why audience members can expect to learn a little bit of Shona every Limpopo performance, along with some dance moves!
So, if you enjoy flute, guitar, keyboard, saxophone, congas, bass guitar, shakers and vocals…and watching parts of a drum kit being simultaneously dismantled and played on the drummer’s head…well, this is definitely the band for you!
“It’s safe to say that after Limpopo’s uplifting performance, the summer party spirit was in full flow.”
– The Big Day Out, South Hill Park
“Your energy is infectious and you know how to share the love!”
– Chris Mitchell, Events organiser, Producer, Performer
“African dancing is sooooo coooool. Thanks to Limpopo Groove and those lovely men, and women, whom I was dancing with at the gig/party. So good to let yerself go.”
– Susie Fison, after Party In The Garden
“Limpopo Groove: It’s not just the music, it’s the whole experience…the definition of musical fun!”
– Rory, after Live with Limpopo at Denmark Studios
“It was a joy. Your music was an absolute joy to dance to!”
– Pete, after a Global Café performance
“Tremendous and memorable afternoon! Well done! XxX”
– Ingrid Piercey-Clark, after Party In The Garden
“Your music is the happiest, most joyful music EVER!”
– Deborah Ferguson, after Eldon Arms performance as part of the Village Ale Festival
“Simply the BEST band in Reading!”
– Nick Harborne, Director of Reading Refugee Support Group