Mentioning aKing in a conversation, is sure to get quite a variety of reactions. Everything from absolute awe and wonder, to distant musings of what could have been had they not [insert reasoning here]. Personally, I edge much more to the “awe”-side of things.
The reason for the vastly varying viewpoints, is quite simple actually. You see, when aKing was formed in 2007 by Hunter Kennedy and Jaco Venter from Fokofpolisiekar, many FPK fans expected to hear the same sound we got to know from the legendary Afrikaans rockers. This was, however, not the case. Hunter and Jaco teamed up with Laudo Liebenberg and Hennie van Halen to form a completely new musical experience. It was melodic rock like never heard before. Unfortunately, many people are so anally retentive that they just couldn’t make peace with the fact that this was not another Fokof. Simply put, they missed out on the opportunity to love an awesome band from the start.
Giving birth to a band, and by default being compared to one of the greatest bands ever to see the light of day in South Africa, has been a tall order. aKing however, managed to not only hold their own, but as a matter of fact go UP from their already high starting point. A list of highlights from their career so far (almost 6 years and counting) include 4 album releases:
- Dutch Courage (LP, 2008)
- In The Twilight (EP, 2009)
- Against All Odds (LP, 2009)
- The Red Blooded Years (LP, 2011)
Radio stations on which they have topped various charts include:
- No 1 – Highveld Stereo Homebrew Top 10.
- No 1 – Kovsie FM (Bloem) Top 30
- No 1 – TUKS FM – SA Top 10
- No 1 – RMR SA Top 10 (Grahamstown)
- No 1 – UJ FM SA Top 20
- No 1 – PUK FM – SA Top 20
- No 1 – MFM – Top 10
In 2012, Hunter Kennedy (one of South Africa’s best lyricists) left the band and was replaced by Andrew Davenport. Other than that, the band has remained unchanged. Growing musically, and overall creatively with every new venture (such as their incredible music videos), I can assure you that aKing is a band that will still have an even bigger impact on the South African music industry than they’ve already had.
Here’s one of my favourite aKing songs, Safe As Houses, off of their first album “Dutch Courage”
Check them out on:
This post is part of my “A2Z Blogging Challenge”, where I have committed to creating one post per day, every day of April (except for Sundays), thematically according to the alphabet. For more info on this challenge, check out www.a-to-zchallenge.com