Van Coke Does it Again

30 May 12792298_1030076110393168_584431889244291183_o

DSC_0182A lot can be said for the progress that Francois van Coke has made personally in his own career, and style of music. But, it’s when you look at the impact that he has had on the South African music scene, that you realise how amazing this guy really is. Francois recently scooped up 5 Ghoema awards for Afrikaans music, 3 of which were for “Toe Vind Ek Jou”, that he did with Karen Zoid.

The impact that he has on the next generation of musicians in SA is also extremely evident, with more and more bands emerging in the Afrikaans Rock genre. One of the new kids that we should most definitely keep an eye on, is Werner Oli4, who was chosen as an opening act at the Aandklas Open Mic Nights, that take place every Sunday (except the first of every month) at Aandklas Hatfield. Another such an act, with probably the deepest voice this side of Narnia, is Nick May, who is also a regular at the Open Mic sessions.

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These guys were the perfect choice to get the crowd going on the 28th of May, when Francois did his thing at Aandklas. This show was absolutely mind-blowing, with Nick May setting the tone with Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond, and then getting everyone to confess that they got high. Unfortunately, I missed Werner’s set, since I was caught up at a friend’s Bachelor party (congratulations again, Fred), but I have no doubt that he was every bit as amazing.

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Francois van Coke’s got a way with a crowd that is near impossible to emulate. When he gets onto a stage, every eye in the venue is on him, and every ear is pitched to hear him perform. Saturday was no different. The rocker gave the crowd exactly what they had been expecting, with a little bit extra, as always. My personal favourite moment was when he did “Toe Vind Ek Jou”, which was very different from the version that we are used to with Karen, but still every bit as impactful.

It was an amazing show, giving a platform for young and upcoming musicians to open for great local artist, after being fairly selected (*cough* jasper dan *cough*) by the guys from Aandklas. I believe that we will soon be just as amped to see Werner, Nick, and all of the other talented kids from the Open Mic Nights performing at shows like this, and possibly festivals like Oppikoppi, but for now, join us on Sunday evenings from 19:00 to celebrate the next generation of South African music.

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Article by Michael King.

In Jou (‘n Ou gedig)

21 Jul

Hoe is die vir ‘n #ThrowbackThursday? Oftewel, #DonnerterugDonderdag…
Ek het die gedig ontdek wat ek in Augustus 2009 geskryf het. Ek dink dis een van my persoonlike favourites, en na al die jare bly hy steeds relevant…

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IN JOU

In jou lê eenvoud
In jou lê krag
In jou lê so baie
waarna ek smag

In jou is wysheid
In jou is eer
In jou is alles
wat ek nog moet leer

In jou vind ek vrede
In jou, geluk
Tog in jou hede
wil ek verstik

Want jy is die ek
wat ek more kan wees
Tog is more se ek
die een wat ek vrees…


Nou ja, there you have it. Ek verwys jou ook graag na my Standard Disclaimer voor jy weird goed vra of so…

Comments welcome, sharing encouraged, tequila appreciated.

 

Punk went Pop

11 Jul PUNK-S-NOT-DEAD-lol-micketo-28617559-500-447

As y’all know, life can get a little bit busy sometimes. Now, add a new girlfriend, 3 major campaigns, and Pokemon GO to the mix, and you have no time to write anything other than an email to your boss saying that you found Pikachu on date night.

I am, however, home alone tonight; and the Pokemon GO servers are experiencing problems. So, I decided to catch up on some writing.

As you may, or may not, know, there was quite an interesting tour doing the rounds in SA over the past couple of weeks. Yes, I am referring to Punk Goes Pop. An awesome collection of punk bands taking Top 40 pop songs, and teaching them what life is all about.

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The tour stopped by Aandklas Hatfield on the 1st of July, and as you should know by now, Aandklas is where I spend most of my time (when I’m not in the office, at my girlfriend’s, or walking after the ever elusive Growlithe).

The trio of bands that made up the show was CrashCarBurn, Held On Till May, and Made for Broadway. Now, the last two I haven’t had the pleasure of seeing live before this show, and boy, was I missing out!? These young guns nearly brought the house down with their unquenchable lust for life. An utter pleasure to see, was how these kids breathed new life into a genre whose survival has been the topic of many conversations. So let’s set the record straight right now:

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Held On Till May must have been the highlight of the show for me, with their straight-out-of-a-Sex-Pistols-documentary stage presence and their interactions with the girls in the front row, many of whom I saw trying to get their underwear off to throw on stage. The drummer reminded me most of Iggy Pop and his ilk, losing his shirt halfway through the performance, and chucking wood-chippered drumsticks into the crowd.

The headliners brought a massive tweak* to the way we know pop songs. CrashCarBurn has always been an awesome pleasure to see live, always taking me back to 8th grade, with the sneakers that were too loose to do anything but drag your feet. Any show where you get to see these guys will always go down as a ripper of a performance. Hearing them having a go at Jacaranda’s Highschool Hits was absolutely astounding!

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All in all this was an amazing night out. I got to experience an awesome gig with my gorgeous girlfriend (no seriously, she is breathtaking!) and many of my friends, getting to experience the future of the punk genre in SA, which I am honestly extremely excited to follow, and getting taken back to the days of House Parties* and halfpipes.

I am seriously looking forward to the next installment of Punk Goes Pop, and I hope that the line-up will one day grow to a full three-day festival, where we can mosh, get drunk and pass out, you know, like the old days…

 

 

 

 

*See what I did there?

Dear Band: You are not unique.

9 Jul Music Genres

“Our band does not conform to genres, so don’t put us in a box”
“We sound like unicorn farts and memories of World War 3”
“Unlike anything you’ve heard before…”

You’re a fucking moron if you actually think that you are THAT unique.

oh-god-who-am-iYes, this is a rant about bands who think that they are the first ones to ever try to be original in describing their sound. Read a few “upcoming” bands’ bios, and odds are you’ll find some wannabe creative drivel that simply ends up being a nonsensical waste of time.

Now, I’m not saying that you shouldn’t get creative when describing your band. I would probably give a post-modern grunge jazz fusion band that sounds like unicorn farts and WW3 a listen. But that’s just it. It’s a post-modern grunge jazz fusion whatever band. I have at least a vague idea of where to place them. With relative certainty I can say that they will probably not sound like Kurt Darren. The space for this (admittedly mostly pretentious and/or silly) creativity, is in the “about” section of your bio. Not the genre description.

Why is this important?

Well, to get gigs, for starters. Booking agents, venues’ entertainment managers, festival organisers and all those nice people who give you gigs, don’t know who you are. They don’t know what you sound like, and they most certainly don’t have time to sit and go through all your friends’ cellphone videos of your performances to figure out where and when to book you. These organisers are your friends. They WANT to make sure that your band fits the general vibe of the event. If you’re a black metal band, booking you to open for Jan Blohm is probably not going to work out, even though your bio stated that your genre is “poetic interpretations of dark souls” (or some kak like that).

pooptatoSecondly, a proper attempt at indicating your genre is important for basic marketing purposes. Facebook (for instance) is more likely to suggest your page to fans of your (actual) genre if it correlates to genres of other bands that an individual might follow.

My rant is not only applicable to the little “genre” box on whichever platform you prefer posting your presence, but also to the “sounds like” bit. I know you don’t like hearing this, but odds are that you really aren’t the first to ever sound like you do. The easiest way for me to know what I let myself in for when booking you, is to reference more well-known acts. Even if you have to say  you sound something like the love-child that popped up after Ed Sheeran boned Elvis, that would at the very least give me some indication as to what to expect. Just make sure (and this is important) that you actually do sound like that. Remember, sounding LIKE someone does not make you any less creative. It simply means you share a genre, possibly some characteristics. If you say you sound like Flyleaf, but your only correlation is that you have a female vocalist in the mix, you’re an idiot.

There are more than 1200 different music genres. If that’s not enough for you, you can always hyphenate. 

If you have even read this far [drummers, if your bassist read this to you (laughs at obligatory overused muso-joke)], and you feel I’m a dick… well, you’re probably right.

At least you now know where to place me.
Can I say the same about you?

Music Genres

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