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In 1960, after South African police killed 69 anti-apartheid protestors in the Sharpeville massacre, trumpeter Hugh Masekela went into exile. Accepted at the Manhattan School of Music, the 21-year-old had a mind-blowing initial evening in the Big Apple. Making the rounds at clubs, he checked out Thelonius Monk and Dizzy Gillespie at one spot, Charlie Mingus and Max Roach at a second, and John Coltrane at a third. By 1968, Masekela had made a name for himself in the U.S., with the catchy Afropop instrumental hit “Grazing in the Grass.” In subsequent years, Masekela lent his instrumentation to multiple genres, collaborated with Paul Simon and Harry Belafonte, and campaigned for political and racial equality in his homeland. At the Manhattan School, Masekela met pianist Larry Willis, who later became known for his collaborations with Gillespie. Together these two like to play warm, leisurely takes on melody-filled jazz and soul standards from Fats Waller, Louis Armstrong, Herbie Hancock, and the Stylistics, and share stories from more than 50 years in the industry. The pair might sound the most distinctive when Masekela reaches back into his catalog for songs made famous by his former wife, the late South African singing great Miriam Makeba. Hugh Masekela and Larry Willis perform at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. at AMP by Strathmore, 11810 Grand Park Ave., North Bethesda. $35–$50. (301) 581-5100. ampbystrathmore.com.