“Paco’s gift for composition and his unique talent on the drums are drawn together with polished exuberance.”

 - Karen Rutter, Top of the Times

Mozambican-born ​Frank Paco ​has long been recognised as one of SA's top drummers​ - after he began playing aged 11, using drums that were made from oil canisters – such was the shortage of musical instruments in a war-torn country at the time.


He has played with some of the greatest names in the music industry: Queen’s Bryan May at the 46664 Mandela AIDS concert, a drum duet with Roger Taylor, Bono, Angelique Kidjo, Peter Gabriel, Jimmy Cliff, Johnny Clegg, Ronny Jordan, Monique Bingham, Ray Phiri, Jonathan Butler, Miriam Makeba, Hugh Masekela, Brenda Fassie and Jimmy Dludlu, amongst many more.


Frank has performed at every major festival in SA as well as many festivals and events abroad in places as diverse as including Scandinavia, India, Reunion & Mauritius.  He is a co-founder of local bands Tucan Tucan, Virtual Jazz Reality, Loading Zone and Uhambo.  As a session musician, Frank is featured on 60 albums, ten of which have been award winners.

The Frank Paco Art Ensemble is his own band, playing​ Sub-saharan jazz that draws on influences from across the continent.  Audiences can expect be taken on a journey through the pulsating rhythms and sultry melodies of Sub-Saharan Africa and the continent, infused with jazz elements from across the spectrum to create an exquisite layered fusion.  


The Frank Paco Art Ensemble has released two CDs and plays regularly at venues across South Africa.   They have also played to encores and ovations at festivals including the Cape Town International Jazz Festival and the Standard Bank Youth Jazz Festival.  

The band has Maputo, Johannesburg and Cape Town based lineups, sometimes combining members from the different cities depending on the performance engagement.  The featured vocalists are Johannesburg-based  Zoë Modiga (top 8 of SA The Voice season 1) and Cape Town based Adelia Douw, winner of the 2015 Open Mic Jazz competition at GrandWest Casino and previously lead singer for the Delft Big Band.

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