Struan Douglas

Born in Durban Umhlanga Rocks to Tessa and Robert Douglas in 1976, Struan was named after a town in Scotland where they produce excellent honey. Struan is born into an artistic family and the youngest of four children. After matriculating from the top private schools in KZN, Struan attended UCT where he studied to honours in Social Sciences; Religion and Philosophy. "Following a brief encounter with Winston Mankunku (jazz saxophonist) in 1999 and a long encounter with Jim Bailey (Poet) my life took on a heightened meaning purpose and awareness. I fell in love with Africa and South African Jazz Music."

The website afribeat.com was launched April 1st 2000 in likeness of Jim's Drum magazine.

To sustain his passion for South African Jazz Struan became a 'Jazz Journalist,' work he continues to do to this day. Since 1999 to the current day, he has contributed on South African Jazz Music for a variety of publications and radio stations.

The website afribeat.com became the host and founding creator of many archives, recordings, books and initiatives.

Afribeat entered the recording industry through a partnership with SABC whereby the multimedia collaborations Archive Africa and Wondergigs were initiated in 2001

Afribeat entered a recording partnership with Mac Mackenzie to create the Goema Captains of Cape Town

Afribeat developed an African travel journalism and festival connection and artists exchange called Dancing with the Diaspora presented at WOMEX 2000

In 2005 Struan met Graham Michael Lesch. Graham had an important story to tell and engaged Struan in the editing and pubishing of Shadows of Justice. Shadows of Justice was the first self published book by afribeat.com. This initation created a platform for a number of other self published authors to follow.

Dr Bhengu’s African Midwife Institution, poets Adam Knight, Jim Bailey and Macingwane’s works have all seen the light of day since.

Today Struan is known as a South African based African cultural writer, performer, presenter, activist and educator. He has Bachelor Social Sciences Honours in Philosophy and Religion from the University of Cape town. He has a Royal School of Music grade 5 qualification in theory and trumpet performance from Ukusa at the University of KwaZulu Natal.

Cultural Management



Editor for Drum Magazine’s Jim Bailey (1998-9)
Founding director afribeat.com, African Music content portal. (2000 - )
Education archive at ILAM (2013 - )
Archivist for MELT2000 records (2005-7)
Participated in Creative Industries Draft Master Plan (2019 - )
Journalism (1999 - ) Columnist for Sawubona, Big Issue and Downbeat. Contributed writing and photography to Sunday, Saturday, African Independent, Mail & Guardian, Expressions, Cape Times, City Press, Sunday World, Biophile, Mini International, Skylife, GQ, Highlife, Pacific, Business Day, Sunday Times, Noseweek, Destinations, New Frame, City Life Arts, Billboard and New Africa Magazine.

Social Activism through Journalism



‘Dancing with the Diaspora’ African festival circuit WOMEX (2000 - ) Music goes to War FESPAM Congo Brazzaville (2001)
World Cup visiting journalists tour of Durban (2010)
Jazz in Germany Foreign Office Visitors Programme (2017)
Pan African Music Rights Investigation (2018 - )
Author Shadows of Justice (2007), The Story of South African Jazz. Volume One (2015), To the Peace on Earth (2019), The Story of South African Jazz. Volume Two (2019), "Holy Huriǂoaxa Shipwrecked (2020)
Photographer: Airborne to Africa (2012),
Design & Layout: Cryptic Cynic (2007), The New South Africa and the friends around her (2012), African Midwife Series (2012), Pleiades Isilimela (2019)
Music Production: Afribeat Compilation (2000), Archive Africa (2001), Moment in Cape Town (2002), Goema Captains of Cape Town (2003).
Produced events: Wondergigs (2001-2), The Story of South African Jazz: LIVE (2015 - )
Live Performance: Shine (2015) Steel ‘n Brass (2018 - ) Azuri Street Symphony (2018)
Film Production: Music Free Learning Season 1 Attunement (2020), Music Free Learning Season 2 Assimilation (2021)

Educator



“What is Jazz to you?” AV presentation grades 11, 12 (2020 - )
“Jazz is Freedom” AV presentation to schools and teachers (2021- )

Awarded Grants



2018 ANFASA (Authors non Fiction Association)
2019 BASA (Business Arts South Africa)


@STRUHURU