Francois van Coke. Foto deur Hayden Phipps

Francois van Coke – nou met Liefde, by die Dam

“Ek en Karen het besef dit is ‘n goeie song toe ons dit geskyf het,” vertel Francois van Coke oor die virale internetsukses van Toe Vind Ek Jou – die liefdesballade wat hy saam met Karen Zoid geskryf en opgeneem het.

“Voor die album [Francois van Coke, sy selfgetitelde solodebuut] uit was het ek dit natuurlik vir vriende gespeel, en selfs my metalhead chommies het hoendervleis gekry as hul dit hoor. Maar ek het in my wildste drome nie die reaksie verwag wat ons gekry het nie.”

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.

Bad Peter - Let Go. Photo by Grant Difford

Let Go: Bad Peter on escape, a busy music career, and not being a political band

Everybody might not have seen Bad Peter live, but the ones who have describe the band’s spirited performance as lively, compelling, and… well… damn good. They’re one of the busiest bands in the country at the moment, and recently, after signing with David Gresham Records, released their first EP, Let GoFor a five-track EP, Let Go has a surprisingly diverse set of influences and stylistic elements. Yet it maintains a distinct “Bad Peter”-sound. It’s bright, acoustic, sparkling and hair-raising – even sexy at times – while lyrically being both spirited and serious. Bad Peter is an acoustic duo consisting of PG Badenhorst and Alwyn Bekker, and we spoke to them about their career and their debut EP.

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.

Albert Frost - The Wake Up album cover

The Wake Up: Albert Frost talks about turning over a new leaf

Albert Frost woke up.

For such a prolific performer, his new album, The Wake Up, comes a surprising seven years after his last solo release, Devils and Gods. And for someone who’s spent 21 years as one of the Blues Broers before quitting the band last year, The Wake Up isn’t quite as bluesy as one might expect. “I’ve been slightly pigeon-holed as a blues guitarist,” Albert Frost explains – which is just how the music business works. But actually, my influences are very wide and range way further than just the blues. And I’ve never had a vehicle to explore that or felt that my voice is ready for this.”

Until now. The Wake Up, while firmly rooted in the blues [“I can’t escape it, I love it so much,” says Frost], is varied, eclectic, and certainly very different.

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.

DJ Billy Killer van de Sandton

DJ Billy Killer van de Sandton – From BMX to Xai Xai

DJ Billy Killer van de Sandton is the only person I know of whose journey into music started with BMXing. “I started racing BMX and then turned to freestyle BMX. I met some really cool dudes like Brad and Greg Illingworth and after a good riding session they used to take me to live shows at places like the original Bohemian and London Calling in Troyville.”

On one of these occasions, he discovered The Slashdogs“From there I fell in love with the whole idea of Rock ‘n roll, Punk and live music.”

And he still has a punk edge to him.

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.

Dan Patlansky - Image Credit Pierre Blignaut

Dan Patlansky launches new album: Introvertigo

Dan Patlanksy is introverted.

That might seem obvious, seeing as his new album is called Introvertigo, but it doesn’t quite gel with being a performing musician and performing in front of thousands of people. “It does seem like a silly career choice if you’re an introvert,” he says, “but I think the whole point of this album is to maybe explain what an introvert actually is.”

Introvertigo is built on songs from the mind of an introvert. “I don’t think any of them are about being an introvert, but it’s almost like the memoirs of an introvert, or the thoughts of an introvert, or the way an introvert sees the world.”

Nardus Groenewald

Nardus Groenewald is a geek for music, computer games, tech, gadgets, and those chocolate eggs with jelly in them that Woolies sells at the tills. In his spare time he grows a decent beard and holds down a full time job.

December Streets 2 - Credit Run Jump Fly

December Streets: Returning to Mieliepop, reinvigorated

You’re already familiar with December Streets. Especially if phrases like “Won’t you put your feet back on today, love” or “Stay by me – everybody else can leave” sound familiar, or the homegrown, ska and reggae influenced, trumpet-featuring, infectious earworm Indie pop rings a bell. I spoke to the lead singer of the band, Tristan Coetzee, ahead of their return to Mieliepop Festival this year.

“I think that is definitely something that was a natural thing back when we started,” says Tristan of the foot-stomping, singalong kind of gigs they are well known for, where a rapport with the audience is a crucial part of the show. “That kind of music lent itself to the audience getting involved and everyone jamming and having a good time and partying. It is a very important thing for any musician at a live show to get crowd interaction, because that is the foundation of a good performance – not actually how good you sound.”

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.

The Plastics

The Plastics – An interview with South African teen royalty

Lindsay Lohan starred in a movie in 2004 as a homeschooled girl, who comes to an American high school after having lived in Africa for 15 years. Her character, Cady, semi-relucantly joins the clique of popular girls called The Plastics. We spoke to Pascal Righini of The Plastics (the band) about Lindsay’s career.

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.

The Shabeen

The Shabeen opens its doors to Mpumalanga and Mieliepop

No, you won’t be able to buy a beer from them. However, says Ryan McArthur of Capetonian folk-punk duo The Shabeen, if they did sell alcohol, the beers would be “as cheap as they could be, you know… so we could all just have a good party together.” Ryan accompanies previously established solo folk-punker Jon Shaban on upright bass and additional vocals, and I spoke to him about folk-punk as a genre, the launch of their new album, and folk music’s appropriation into pop.

While the band was formed in 2012 as an extension of Jon’s solo act, it has since evolved into a legitimate duo, where even the songwriting involves both members. “We both work on songs for The Shabeen,” Ryan explains. “Whoever brings an initial idea, we’ll work on that together. Jon is obviously more of the songwriter, so more of the initial ideas come from Jon, but we definitely work on the ideas together.”

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.

Lost & Found - Photo by Gillian Coetzee

Meet Lost&Found (or: Can you still call it a supergroup if they only have two people?)

The Parlotones have a bit of a reputation. What exactly that reputation is, I’m not sure. There was a degree of unspecified backlash when they were announced to play at Oppikoppi 2015. But maybe that makes this the perfect time for a side-project. Introducing…

Lost&Found

Lost&Found is a new Alternative Country/Rock music project consisting of Glen Hodgson from The Parlotones & Jason Oosthuizen (Black Cat Bones drummer).

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.

Art Snakes "Yes, I can hear you Clem Fandango"

Art Snakes releases their first single: “Yes, I can hear you Clem Fandango”

A new band launches. The number one question on everyone’s lips: What do they sound like? Well, apart from their first gig at Arcade Empire’s Halloween party last year, the Pretoria-based Art Snakes have finally released the first taste – their debut single, “Yes, I can hear you Clem Fandango”. We spoke to them about the band and the song, and you can read all about it here while listening to the song.

Floris Groenewald

Floris sometimes writes things when he’s not watching movies or playing video games or editing videos or folk-rock singing/songwriting.