TRT World, Oct. 3, 2018
Gwijo Squad changing the face of South Africa Rugby
TRT World, Oct 3, 2018
Narrator [1:06-1:23] Though the [?] of amagwijo may be new to the ears of most South African fans, it has been a part of Xhosa culture for generations. It started from the struggle and moving on to the sports field and its reemergence in popular culture has certainly put a smile on a lot of people’s faces”…
Gwijo Squad changing the face of South Africa Rugby https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wrCrdUfXnW4&ab_channel=TRTWorld [comment]
Isipho CITY, 2020
"It's song which is meant to unite the people, for them to know in whatever battle they are facing, they are not alone and to prepare them mentally for whatever is to come!!!"
From https://www.newframe.com/gwijo-squad-the-new-sound-of-south-african-sport/Gwijo Squad, the new sound of South African sport 20 ; By: Sibusiso Mjikeliso , Photographer: Ihsaan Haffejee, Jun 2019
Igwijo and the trouble it caused
In many ways, [Xhanti] Madolo has always been the guy at the forefront of a wave of change. In high school, he was the rugby cheerleader and courted trouble at post-1994 Dale College in King William’s Town in the Eastern Cape for his penchant for igwijo.
“We sang the school songs with pride and vigour, but we mixed things up with igwijo the year I took over as cheerleader [in 2000],” he recalls.
“We needed to take the cheering to another level, because our team was on another level and the culture was changing. We started bringing in the more popular traditional songs: “Ntombi emnhlotshazana … Yinton’ le uyenzayo, ayilunganga (Fair-skinned girl, what you’re doing is not right)”. And we readapted struggle songs, replacing names like Oliver Tambo and Nelson Mandela with the first team captain.
“The boys took to it, but the teachers on the other hand had other opinions. They banned igwijo. I don’t know how many times I have been called into the headmaster’s [James Haupt] office because of igwijo.
“Then Grey High School [from Port Elizabeth] threatened not to play against Dale if amagwijo would be sung at rugby matches. They said they were ‘savage songs’ or something like that. But it was too big a thing, too big to contain. They couldn’t fight it and it grew into something that is now the norm in the passages at the school.”...
From https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/workplace-inclusivity-unsung-gwijo-thabo-moloi "Workplace Inclusivity" - The Unsung Gwijo
Published on August 20, 2019, Thabo Moloi
…."A gwijo is an African chant used to commemorate important
cultural events. It is how black people have traditionally come together to
celebrate, to mourn, to show solidarity and remind each other of the defiant
spirit inherent in all of us"
Understanding the Gwijo Squad movement
SABC Digital News, Sep 6, 2019
[Pancocojams Editor's Note: This is my transcription of a brief portion of this televised discussion (at around 1:46 to around 3:40 of this video). Additions and corrections are welcome.]
(Interviewer) -"So you're here to tell us about amagwijo. It's more than what we see in the stadiums, it's a rich tradition. Amigwijo is a Xhosa tradition. Tell us more about it"
Chulumanco Macingwane (C.M.) [chairman of the Gwijo Squad]: "The word igwijo is a Xhosa word, but the practice of gwijo, the singing of these traditional songs that take the form of a leader and respondents is something that is completely ubiquitous in the country. It exists in every single one of our cultures which is why it resonates so much with people of all cultures. Incidentally, I was explaining to some, to some really enthusiastic White supporters today that when you see a gwijo squad or a group of Black people singing gwijo, don't assume that everyone speaks the language that they are singing in. We might be singing in isiXhosa and there might be Venda people and Sotho people and such but it's because this thing exists in all those cultures. So whatever language it is being sung in, they, it resonates with them and they take right with it [Pancocojams Editor: I'm not sure of these words]. Why we felt that if a Venda dude can learn a Xhosa gwijo, it should not be that much difficult if at all for an Afrikaan say to learn a Xhosa gwijo. So that's why..."
[Iinterviewer): "It's for everyone."
(C.M.): "We felt that we needed to bring the spirit of gwijo absolutely to every color, creed, language". Yes.
Interviewer: "So, it's songs to get you through hardship. Rugby is particularly apt. Those players on the field have a lot of pressure. But it's the captain Gqoboka who has clicked so effortlessly with the Gwijo Squad. Tell us about that relationship.".
Meet the Gwijo Squad, the musical fan group confronting apartheid’s legacy
But the result is almost immaterial. The match will forever be remembered as a turning point in the history of South African sport. It was the first time a black African – Siya Kolisi – captained the Springboks, the national rugby team named after the leaping antelope on its crest that for so many people in South Africa is still an emblem of apartheid.
After completing his post-match media responsibilities, Kolisi skipped the lap of honor his teammates were undertaking and instead made a beeline to a cluster of fans gathered on the opposite side of the field.
He came straight to us,” Chulumanco Macingwane, 35, told CNN Sport. “It was mind-blowing. He came over and it was in that extraordinary moment that we knew we had started something special.
Macingwane was surrounded by 77 other people who had arrived at one of world rugby’s great stadiums with a single purpose — to sing traditional and spiritually significant African songs known as igwijo – as part of the newly formed Gwijo Squad.
“These are songs that speak to our African roots and reach deep into our ancestral past,” explained Sibusiso Mjikeliso, South African journalist, broadcaster and author of “Being a Black Springbok: The Thando Manana Story.”
“They are songs that have been sung for generations at coming-of-age initiation rites, weddings, funerals and at times of celebration and struggle. They are songs of love, of mourning, of challenge and ritual.”
But they were never heard in rugby stadiums, at least not with this much confidence and so many voices."...
Fromhttps://www.timeslive.co.za/sport/rugby/2019-11-04-the-rousing-singing-of-the-gwijo-squad-fast-becoming-synonymous-with-sa-rugby/ The rousing singing of the Gwijo Squad fast becoming synonymous with SA rugby
04 November 2019, By Alex Patrick
"Captain Siya Kolisi may not have been able to hear them when he ran onto the field with his teammates in Tokyo on Saturday‚ but the rousing singing of the Gwijo Squad back in SA was no doubt reverberating in his heart.
The group‚ who sing traditional Xhosa amaGwijo songs‚ are fast becoming synonymous with SA rugby.
Founded by Johannesburg financial advisor Mzwandile Riba‚ the size of the group [ the Gwijo Squad] varies between 200 and 2‚500‚ depending on the match.
It started off as a small group of friends going to enjoy the rugby together in 2017.
Riba said Gwijo was a word that described the folk singing used to bring groups of people together.
“They are songs of encouragement‚" Riba said."...
E039 - iGwijo: healing anthems for South Africa
Nov 23, 2020
Part of these songs’ potency resides in their being so cathartic across a range of human emotions: they can express joy, determination and victory, but also devastation. A Gwijo ‘performance’ can celebrate, protest, resist or reclaim. Ultimately though, it draws on the power of the collective to attain a kind of fierce grace, a coming together in intensity.
THE STADIUM EFFECT OF GWIJO SQUADS
In South Africa, Gwijo is becoming pervasive at sporting events. It seems to have been born, at least partially, out of an instinct for harmonising discordant energies in the national history and culture. You see, sporting events in South Africa have a history of being segregated and racially charged.
Enter the Gwijo Squad, who turn up to rugby and cricket events to reclaim a sense of shared ownership and create safety. The Gwijo effect in stadiums fosters belonging, raises feel-good energy, and, ultimately imbues the sporting fixture with a sense of communal joy.
Why does it work? All South Africans – whether consciously or subconsciously – carry the intergenerational trauma of their country’s recent history. But when South Africans of all stripes experience the electric co-regulation of Gwijo, the resulting atmospheric shift is irresistible.
Gwijo is South Africa’s current movement of song and
togetherness. Watch this space.”
Noba bethi ndale published by GwijoSquad, July 5, 2018
Siyathandwa Gomo, September 7, 2021
…"I think perhaps other languages do have their own gwijos, however most gwijos that are well known and have the best vibe are Xhosa. Some gwijos are struggle songs that were made during apartheid in prisons and in protests. Some gwijos are songs made by young Xhosa men while they are in their initiation period and also these gwijos are sung when they come back. There are alot of sources or inspirations behind gwijos.
Plural term for gwijos is amagwijo."
10. [Added Sept. 12, 2021]
comment exchange from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_2E4UEfUtg&ab_channel=GwijoRSA "Zonke Izono - Chester [FULL VIDEO]😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭" published by Gwijo RSA, May 17, 2021
1. Owami Khubisa, 2021
"I was gonna be here long time but I did not know soccer songs were called amagwijo 😂😂😂😂"
Gwijo RSA, 2021
Gwijo RSA, 2021
"How did you find us then 😭😹"
Owami Khubisa, 2021
" @Gwijo RSA my sister plays soccer and she sent me the song "Story of my Life" and the cover said Gwijo and I searched it then BOOM 🔥🔥🔥😎"
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