Freshlyground at Cape Farmhouse

EVSFreshlygroundFreshlyground had once again decided to do a fundraiser in aid of Cape Fire cause, this time with the proceeds being donated to EVS (Emergency Volunteer Services), an NGO entity raising funds for the Disaster Management Volunteer Corps in the Far South. They provide coordinated community response and relief to all means of emergency & disaster management – needs from fire and flooding to rescue and urban displacement. EVS volunteers played a crucial role in recent collaborative fire fighting efforts that contained one of the worst fires to hit the Deep South in 15 years. I was excited when I heard the event would be taking place at The Cape Farmhouse in Scarborough, as the venue is one of the most beautiful in Cape Town.

ScarboroughSaturday was a little cloudy, but as the day unfolded the sun danced out from behind the lingering clouds and shone upon the earth. Driving through via Misty Cliffs, the ocean in it’s many shades of blue, met my eyes and it left me with a feeling of peace and contentment.

Upon arriving at the Farmhouse, excitement filled me at the thought of watching a band that every South African loves and admires.

Photo from internet

Photo taken from internet

I had previously watched a couple of bands at the farm and was keen to experience the vibe which the farm is known for.  Families – old and young, came out for the day with picnic blankets, chairs, cooler bags and some even brought their dogs along. The farm is as pretty as a picture – a feeling of being in the country envelopes me every time I step foot on the grounds. The meals on offer are reasonably priced, namely cheese burgers, salads and pasta dishes. The farm has a fully equipped bar to cater for all your thirsty needs. For those who have been to Kirstenbosch Gardens and experienced an outdoor venue, the Cape Farmhouse is possibly even better. The Farmhouse offers a smaller more intimate setting, despite having grounds that can comfortably seat 400 people at a time. There is a stage as well as a cemented area in front of the stage where many gather to dance in tune to the music. If you get there early, like me, you stand the chance of getting one of their tables under the gazebo right in front of the stage. The Farmhouse also boasts a restaurant. This is a lovely setting for wedding parties too. If you would like to find out more about the farm and what they have to offer, follow them on Facebook:

After enjoying a lovely lunch, friendship and laughter it was time to sit back and enjoy the phenomenal Freshlyground. Zolani and the childrenZolani kids2

As they took to the stage, children gathered around the stage in eagerness.

With her funky personality that oozes from every pore of her body, a smile that can light up the darkest night and eyes that reflect her passion, Zolani wove her charm.  Children couldn’t hold themselves back from getting on stage to dance with her – this girl was born for the stage.

Peter Cohen

banjoPeople were packed like sardines in front of the stage to get a little piece of the action. The band rocked the farmhouse – everyone was shaking, rattling and rolling in tune to the music. It is no small wonder that since the inception of Freshlyground in 2002, the band has gone on to touch and impact lives wherever they find themselves.

violionistWhat I personally love the most about Freshlyground is their continued interaction with the community by involving themselves in charity and fundraiser events.

Watch them on You Tube -


To find them in your area or keep up to date with their latest events, follow them on Facebook:



Freshlyground at Cape Farmhouse

Fire Aid Noordhoek – Cafe Roux

pic8 bigoneThe beginning of March saw the start of devastating fires that ravaged our valley far and wide. Wherever I travelled across the valley I saw and smelt smoke and saw the bright glow of flames. The fire continued for days on end and the brave firemen continued fighting fire, day and night to distinguish the blaze from Muizenberg to Hout Bay. Despite danger to their own lives, they fought 24/7 to save us. Every morning we would pray that the helicopters would come. 6.30 each morning I would hear the distant rumbling sound of the choppers coming closer.

helicopterThe sound would grow and in that moment it would be music to my ears. They would rise above the mountain top like large birds as they took to the sky – up and down they would go– scooping water far down below – filling up and emptying out as they went.

Families lost homes, some left wearing just their night clothes, grabbing their sentimental treasures before fleeing into the night. Pets wandered off, confused and filled with terror, not knowing where home was. God’s creatures tried to escape, some did, but others were burnt up in the fire. A deep sadness filled us and we continued to pray. The community stood together, holding hands through it all. Earth angels worked day and night seeing to the needs of the people – food, beds and shelter were provided; they didn’t stop until all were cared for. Some of the elderly had to be escorted from the old age home – some fought to stay, not wanting to leave the safety of their little world, for an unknown place. Many able bodies helped save the lost and injured animals, transporting them to shelters. Food supplies and drinks were dropped off at various stations for the firemen and volunteers. Yes, men and woman from the community left the comfort of their homes and their busy jobs to beat the fire. Many had burns, sore eyes, scars and could scarcely breathe, yet they continued without fail. The firemen slept in their fire trucks at night – they said they would not leave us.

Through prayer, care, bravery and love, the fire was extinguished. A community knit in heart and mind, a unity of brotherhood seen and felt like never before. As we now travel the roads on the majestic mountains around us, let us be mindful of their beauty and the living creatures that dwell there. The next time we hear sirens, let us remember the firemen who give their all, day and night, to protect and keep us safe. My heartfelt respect goes out to all of them.

The lovely Jennifer Eaves wrote a song called ‘David & Goliath’ – watch it on You Tube – it portrays the devastation of the fire through her powerful song. The photography was captured by Gale McCall.
Check out her photography page – Gale has so much experience and truly captures the beauty of people through her images. Here is her link:“>

Jennifer has made it free for download – click on the link:

On Sunday 8 March 2015, some locals, namely the Noordhoek Farm Village, Cafe Roux and The Project Room decided to have a special fundraiser benefit to help support the firemen. Café Roux hosted the event and what a lovely venue to host an event of this nature, as the facility is family friendly and can comfortably host a large group of people. A bunch of artists volunteered to perform for free and all proceeds made on the day would be donated to the fund.

Marshall Music also came on board and sponsored the sound equipment for the day.  Wolftrap and Steenberg generously donated wine in aid of the fund and Foodbarn as well as Cafe Roux donated all sales of food towards the Fire Aid.

MCThe MC of the day was Dion Bing –  Dion did a fine job of entertaining the crowd, as well as providing all the information about the fire, firemen, volunteers, sponsors and more. He managed to get the auction in full swing as the people bid higher and higher. We all felt great sadness at the news of the loss of chopper pilot Hendrik “Bees” Marais – condolences to his wife Jackie Marais and the family.  We salute him for his bravery and all the years of fighting fires in Cape Town and South Africa.

Jeremy OlivierThe first musician to take to the stage was Jeremy Olivier. Sitting there I thought, who better to kick off the afternoon’s event.

Jeremy’s music reaches into your very soul and touches you to the core. Lyrics filled with meaning and truth – Jeremy tells his life story through his music. His sincerity is visible and he opens up his soul for all to see.

His song, or should I say their song – as it was created by both Jeremy and his lovely wife, Nicole- ‘Beautiful’ brings tears to my eyes. The song is about their son they adopted…Noah. A little baby that was abandoned at birth – Jeremy portrays the emotions of both parties involved through his song – deeply moving, powerful and touching. Jeremy shared with us that his song ‘Breathing Under Water’ speaks of having hope while we still living.

Jeremy OlivierHaving watched Jeremy a couple of times I can honestly say there is deepness about his music, but I have seen the lighthearted fun side of him too – some of Jeremy’s songs are ‘funky’, ‘jazzy’ and have a whole lot of soul. Jeremy’s music is versatile and appeals to many.

It comes as no surprise that Jeremy’s music is being played on radio stations throughout South Africa. Jeremy has performed with some of the world’s finest musicians – George Benson, Katherine Jenkins, Jonathan Butler and more recently, Daniel Bedingfield. Some of the local musicians that Jeremy has performed on stage with include Danny K, Loyiso Bala, Sibongile Khumalo, Sonja Herholdt, Brandon October, Judith Sephuma, Ard Matthews, Arno Carstens, Freshly Ground, Mango Groove and Johnny Clegg. Jeremy continues to perform all over South Africa, as well as in Germany, The Netherlands and Dubai. His music is uplifting, encouraging and heartfelt. Take a listen to some of his music here:

Some of Jeremy’s friends accompanied him stage and together they rocked. To find out more about Jeremy and upcoming events, check out his website:

Watch his song ‘Beautiful’ on You Tube:“>

Beatenbergbeat6bwThe three young men that took to the stage next were Matthew Field who wooed us with his voice and guitar strumming, Ross Dorkin who played bass like there was no tomorrow and what can I say about Robin Brink on drums – passion written across his face as he beat the drums in tune to the music.

This trio is known as Beatenberg. I noticed the young people mesmerized by their sound. Radio stations feature their music and they recently did a set ‘live’ on air with 5fm. Catchy, cool and hip are three words that express what their music is about. To find out more about them, follow them on Facebook: or check out their website:

Watch their video ‘Chelsea Blakemore’ here:“>

It was to be my first time watching Freshlyground and I felt like a big kid with a lucky packet. I couldn’t help but be swept away by the fun that is Freshlyground. The band consists of :

Zolani Mahola – Lead vocals
Simon Attwell – Flute, Mbira, Harmonica
Peter Cohen – Drums
Kyla Rose Smith – Violin, Vocals
Julio “Gugs” Sigauque – Acoustic Guitar
Josh Hawks – Bass Guitar, Vocals
Seredeal “Shaggy” Scheepers – Keyboards, Percussion
Lovely ZolaniZolani is so tiny yet her voice is so powerful and fiery – all heart, soul and passion poured out of her. It set my heart on fire to see the people all around me laughing, singing and dancing in tune to the music. Together they form a powerful band – like dynamite their sound exploded and reached into the very hearts of the people.

zolanebwFreshlygroundFreshlyground is a band that all South Africans look up to and admire. They are strong supporters of charity events and have giving hearts. Zolani sponsored one of her designer dresses for the auction. The dress was designed by Michelle Ludek. Her dress was auctioned off to the highest bidder at a whopping R20 000. This is not where it ended…a Dutch couple very generously decided to match this sum which then brought the total to R40 000! What a compassionate couple! How cool is that?

freshyground23bwfreshlyground400To keep up to date with them, follow them on Facebook:


freshlyground75freshlyground60freshlyground65freshlyground70Me & Mr BrownMrBrown5To end things off, ‘Me & Mr Brown’ took to the stage. These guys play covers and what a fine job they do! Me and Mr Brown play at functions such as weddings or birthdays – I guess office parties too. After the very first song, all those that were not yet standing were up on their feet and swaying to the music. They played a vast range of covers that we could all sing along to and the vibe was just incredible.

crowd3 crowd2There is just something so unifying when people stand together and sing – no barriers, just hearts and souls facing one another and loving life.

Check them out on:

At the end of the day R150 000 was raised! What an awesome event and bunch of people that made this happen. Big thanks.

ChildWhen I look back on this day, the memory of what matters most will live on in my heart–

Love, brothers, sisters, friends and family! As long as we have these treasures, we have everything, despite adversity we can hold on together – we have hope.

If you would like to make a donation or support in any way – check out the website:

Fire Aid Noordhoek – Cafe Roux

False Bay Folk Music Association presents Wren Hinds and Steve Van

Photo by Tj Biggs

Photo by Tj Biggs

Tuesday evening was another folk night. Yes, the False Bay Folk Music Association hosts a fun filled music evening every 1st Tuesday of the month at the Clovelly Country Club. I have been privileged to watch some highly accomplished musicians – Jonathan Tait, Jennifer Eaves, Simon van Gend and more. All thanks goes to Dominique Adelbert for bringing this whole experience to False Bay and in particular Clovelly Country Club. The view from here is breathtaking – mountains surround Clovelly and it feels like the view goes on forever. The premises were initially used by a group of naval officers stationed at the nearby Simonstown base and a number of enthusiastic golfers from the area – the Clovelly Golf Links was formed and started out as a nine-hole course.

CLOVELLY CLUB After the Great Depression of the late 1920’s, Clovelly was rescued from closure by two entrepreneurs, namely Gus Ackerman and Michael Pevsner who took ownership of the land. In 1932 Clovelly Country Club was formed and it opened officially in 1934.

The club as it stands today is one of the most popular played courses by golfers. The breakfasts and roast lunches are very tasty – I can attest to this. After a round of golf, golfers meet for a drink in the festive bar. I know golfers take their game very seriously, but despite sometimes sucking at it, once they sit down with drink in hand, all thoughts of this escapes them, as the view from up high spreads out before them and in the distant the sea twinkles invitingly in all its splendour.

CLOVELLYNow if you’re a golfer and a lover of music, you would do well booking a game of golf and then heading on to the dining lounge that is not just cozy but an intimate setting, which fits perfectly for the experience of folk music. Here are the links to both the Club and the False Bay Folk Association. The menu for the night offers Fish and Chips, Calamari, chips and salad, homemade beef burgers and chips to mention just a few – delicious and very well priced.


This Tuesday was no exception. I had heard that a young man by the name of Wren Hinds had moved to Cape Town from Durban and was eager to see if the rumours were true. Wren has a certain peaceful presence which is touching to watch. This rubbed off on all of us. Considering the flames of the fast approaching fire so close to Clovelly Country Club, it was a temporary relief – a moment of escape from the reality of this night.

 wren2Wren brings a folk/country feel and his music truly felt therapeutic. Wren has a soothing voice – his tone reminds me of a feather gliding through the air, falling lightly and floating to the ground – dreamy like soft fluffy clouds floating through a pale blue sky – light, soft and slow.

To catch up with all his latest news and to experience his music follow him on Facebook:

Watch him and his brother on You Tube :

STEVE VAN EXPOSteve Van was up next – folk/country and a touch of rock is what Steve’s music is about. What can I say about Steve; he has touched so many with his deep lyrics and his sincerity is strongly seen and felt by all who are fortunate enough to hear him.

STEVE VAN EXPO2Steve shared his song “Into the Sky” which was used in the Volkswagen television ad – “Saying Goodbye to Citi Golf” and let’s not forget his song “Faceless” which he wrote to raise awareness of rhino poaching. This is admirable, considering that 49 Rhinos have been poached since the start of 2015!

Steve has become a voice for the Rhino – he speaks on behalf of the Rhino through his music. Hopefully it will touch and change hearts. Every time he sings this song I feel shivers and deep emotions running through me at the thought of the brutality and horror the Rhino face.

Watch the song here:

Steve also sang another favourite of mine “Angel” – which he dedicates to his two angels – his beautiful daughters. It is heartfelt to see Steve’s emotions – his music is truly his story and how it impacts his life – this is truly what music is about – telling stories and bringing change in our world. Steve’s music is sincere, truthful, raw, current and deeply emotional. I didn’t want the evening to end, so moved I felt.

So often we hear music playing on the radio and we sometimes just turn a deaf ear, but it is important to listen – we can learn much through music.

Listen to Steve :

Give Steve a follow on Facebook to keep in touch and hear all his latest news:




False Bay Folk Music Association presents Wren Hinds and Steve Van

Camphill Village – Monthly Market Featuring Music Of Marnus Daniel

Photos by Kit Heathcock

Yesterday a friend and I took a drive out to Camphill Village. It is a beautiful drive through once you get past the hustle and bustle of Century City.

Camphill Village is an organization that has been operating for the past 50 years. Last year they celebrated the 50th year with an all day market that featured several musicians with Valiant Swart and Freshly Ground being the main acts of the day. A barn dance was held a month later with an auction in conjunction with the event, which was enjoyed with great gusto by all. The care for the folk at Camphill Village is seen and felt. The hands-on approach and dedication of the staff is evident at every event.

Read more here:



Camphill Village

As we arrived yesterday, the camp was abuzz with activity. Children played and roamed freely in the lovely grounds and tree with ladders. Cars lined the sandy roadway all the way up to the market and main building. People chatting enthusiastically and in the distance I could hear sweet melodies drifting through the air to my ears.

As Mikki and I turned and looked at one another, I noticed her smile mirrored mine. We excitedly walked faster to get to the action. All around there were people selling delicious food – from home made burgers to pancakes, fish cakes, spinach/feta fritters and let’s not forget the yummy chocolate brownies and good old-fashioned milk tart and refreshing herb juice of course! If you’re looking for the freshest homegrown vegtetables, look no further. Mikki managed to purchase a beautiful beaded necklace for a mere R30.00.  The lady who sells the juice remembered me from last month and specially came over to call me to her table. Friendliness and interaction are two words that are synonymous with Camphill Village.


MARNUSAfter getting something to munch on, we made our way to a spot under the trees where Marnus Daniel was playing his heart out for all the folk. People were dancing and singing along – what a precious sight to behold. The songs were a selection of classic and pop. To my surprise and delight I even heard an ‘Afrikaans liedjie’.

MARNUS DANIELMARNUS DANIEL SUCH BRILLIANCEWhen Marnus played the theme song from ‘Titanic’ – ‘My Heart Will Go On’ – a young lady started singing from deep within her soul, arm movements followed– it was a moving experience watching her – my own emotions ran away with me. For one moment in time -Marnus made her feel like a ballerina. I was astounded at his capabilities on the keyboard – his fingers moved endlessly – like lightening striking the keyboard, so his fingers brought sparks to everyone around him – as if we had been struck by lightening – our eyes fixed firmly on him.

MUSIC BY MARNUS DANIEL AND DONALD BARNETTDonald Barnett accompanied Marnus with some of the songs, playing his guitar and together they wove their magic, casting a spell on all of us. We sat in awe with bated breath waiting for each and every song, not wanting the music to end. A big thanks goes out to Donald Barnett of the #mammagogo initiative for arranging the monthly artists. If not for his commitment to Camphill Village, we would not have experienced this.  Look out for further markets featuring more of the same. Follow Mamma Gogo on their Facebook page:

A little more about what’s on offer at Camphill Village – the dairy boasts the finest yoghurt on the planet. Rumour has it, that they now stock chocolate yoghurt, but alas, in my excitement for all the day’s events I forgot to look for it.

For those who love natural products – check out their amazing herbal products ranging from herbal cosmetics, lip balms, deodorants, massage oils to bath milks, just to mention a few.


The bakery uses stone-ground flour and natural wild yeasts. It offers – rye-ferment bread (wheat and yeast free), seed loaf, light brown bread, raisin bread, rusks, rye biscuits and more. There is nothing quite like fresh home baked bread and this is it!

I for one am eternally grateful I found Camphill Village – once I had found it my life had been touched and changed forever. I was drawn to the people and the beauty of the farm.


By visiting Camphill Village and purchasing some of their products, you not only support them financially, you leave with your heart ablaze and Camphill Village and its people live in your heart.  When we contribute as a community, we enable Camphill Village to continue doing what they do for years to come. This is a power that lies within you and me to make it happen. To find out more about Camphill Village- the work in progress, all the products available, as well as events happening – such as the ‘monthly music market,’ follow them on Facebook and give their page a ‘like’, or visit their website:





Camphill Monthly Market With A Difference

It was that time of the year again when lovers of music gather under the African sun on their picnic blankets, sipping long cool drinks while enjoying a delicious packed picnic with friends and family. The excitement mounted as the afternoon unfolded into an evening that was bound to end on a high note. Those gathered would leave with a feeling of euphoria. Yes, the day had finally arrived – the day of the Cape Town Folk ‘n Acoustic Music Festival.

The MC of the event, namely Gavin Minter, had arranged an evening with one of the greatest ‘line ups’ to date. This was to be the 7th official Folk Festival since its inception a couple of years back. This outstanding event takes places twice a year and the artist/s team up with a partner for a ten minute slot during which they play a song or two. So in other words, they each get to perform one of their own songs.

jen2First to take to the stage was a lady who is fast achieving fame in and around Cape Town, it was none other than the lovely Jennifer Eaves. Think ethereal, dreamy and haunting and you have Jennifer in a nutshell. Jennifer has opened for the likes of Jeremy Loops – no small wonder why. I always tend to break out in shivers when Jennifer reaches those high notes – her classic background comes across very powerfully.


Jennifer is a deep lyricist and her lyrics take you along on her journey, which is a beautiful one.

What an opening performance to kick things off. To find out all about Jennifer and to stay up to date with all her events, follow her on facebook: or visit her web site : to listen to Jennifer click on the link:


Alice Phoebe LouI will never forget the night I witnessed Alice Lou Phoebe singing her heart out in Cape Town – a mere girl with candy floss hair and a smile as broad as the ocean.

Gob smacked and amazed all at once by someone so young, I realized that Alice was a star in the making from day one.

Alice has been touring Germany, busking her way through Europe. A video was filmed recently onTed Ex-Berlin of Alice singing – this is a must watch!

aliceAlice travels the world bringing her stories to everyone that is lucky enough to find her. An album has been released and is available via her web site : – get yours today! The official producer of her album is Popsicle Studios.


Nick TurnerNick Turner and Paige Mac were teamed up for what was to be a powerful combination. I witnessed their duo performance at a previous Folk Festival held at the Baxter and I clearly remember how exhilarating it was.

Nick’s music is like a lucky packet – a bag full of surprises -Rock, reggae, African, hip-hop, ghoema and jazz.

If you can recall a band by the name ‘Sons Of Trout’ – well, the founding member was Nick himself. It just goes to show, that Nick is still in the groove and doing his thing.

Paige MacMahon is a name that is synonymous with soul. Raw, pure and honest are three words that come to mind when thinking of Paige’s music.

The lady sings her truth with every fiber of her being and when her voice reaches those heavenly places it feels like an angel has just landed on earth.

Paige MacMahonPaige is part of a band called Paige Mac. Gigging in and around Cape Town, it is always a pleasure to see them in action. Take a listen to their latest tune –

To follow here are links:

tina5Tina Schouw has a serene and regal presence and it comes across on the stage. In her own words: I am a heartist and singer/guitarist. I use music & words to make heart-connections to healing. I am a word & song-crafter & holder of spaces.

Looking at her expressive face, I could tell that behind those deep eyes lays an even deeper soul. Her music is so diverse and spicy; it touches you with rich and colourful flavours.

Gavin Minter joined her on stage, which was a lovely surprise. Together they performed one of his songs – what a treat!

Follow Tina on Facebook:

Or visit her website for more :

HatchetmanA band consisting of three fellows, namely Jono Tait, Nick Catto and Matt Catto rocked the stage with their harmonies and instruments. The band is known as HatchetmanJonathan Tait

Jonathan has a vocal range that blows my mind and his vocals are haunting in nature.

Watch them on You Tube: – this band has a stage presence that grabs you from beginning to end. The guys bring a unique blend of folk and rock in their act. A wonderful feeling of comradeship exists between them and this certainly adds to the vibe that is felt on stage and it rubs off on all who hear. Kirstenbosch Gardens was rocking and Hatchetman were the reason. To find out more about this dynamic band, follow them on Facebook:

Hassan AdasHassan’Adas took to the stage in style, warming us with  African rhythms and sound. Hassan has shared the stage with some big names in the industry including Stimela, Hugh Masekela, Jimmy Dludlu, Simply Red, SibongileKhumalo as well as Brenda Fassie and Miriam Makeba. Other band members include Congo-born Kissangwe Junior Mbouta (drums and vocals), Nathan Carolus (guitar and backing vocals) and Lucas Khumalo (bass and backing vocals) who have all played and recorded with prominent South African musicians. To watch them in action, check them out at the Cape Town International Jazz Festival

After their phenomenal performance I felt proud to be part of this beautiful place we call Africa.

Guy Buttery I was excited for what I was to be part of next – I had heard rumours of a man who played a guitar like no other – this was the moment for me to experience it! Guy Buttery took to the stage and not a sound could be heard coming from the crowd, as everyone waited with bated breath for the magical sound that was soon to be meeting our ears.

Guy delivered a breathless performance of sheer beauty and magnitude. There is something about musical genius that cannot be put into mere words and this is certainly the case for Guy’s brilliance.

I will adopt the name ‘butter fingers’ for this man, as it is befitting him. His playing was like melting butter on a hot piece of toast – I could see and taste and it was good.

Follow him on Facebook to find him in your area of the world –

Andre de Villiers Andre de Villiers is an artist that is well known for his songs ‘Passing Through’ and ‘You And Me’ – watch here:

Andre is a deeply spiritual person and this comes across very strongly in his music. Schools have been touched by his visits – he shares his music far and wide, even in prisons. Andre is a man on a mission to bring change in this world and through his music he portrays the message.

During Andre’s recording career which saw four albums and thousands of gigs, he has worked with some of the world’s finest musicians in the States as well as in Europe. For the past six years, Andre has been travelling the world sharing the story of his life in word and song.

To find out more follow him on Facebook:

Jesse CleggJesse Clegg is a name to be reckoned with. Not only is he the son of the legendary Johnny Clegg, but an accomplished musician in his own right. Jesse spent the first six years of his life touring with his dad and this explains a lot. To quote media: – ‘After the widespread acclaim of his first album, Jesse’s music caught the attention of 3-time Grammy-winning Canadian producer David Bottrill (Muse, Tool, Placebo). Jesse subsequently moved to Toronto for 4 months to work with Bottrill who produced his 2nd album. Another notable contributor was Grammy-winning engineer Bob Ludwig who mastered the album in New York.

Jesse’s debut album in 2008, When I Wake Up, and Life On Mars in 2011 have both made the 25-year-old a platinum-selling success in South Africa. He has been nominated for three South African Music Awards in his career. Jesse continues to make waves not only here in South Africa, but across the world. It was a first for me and I was suitably impressed.


RichardHe was joined on stage by his guitarist Richard Onraet, who may I add, has a superb gift on guitar.

Together they rocked the stage so to speak. Their act was highly entertaining and moving from beginning to end.

Follow Jesse on Facebook:

Ard MatthewsThe two artists to end off the evening needed no introduction. Ard Matthews of Just Jinger fame and Ross Learmonth from Prime Circle are two of the most talented musicians to walk the earth. Ard and Ross both have voices that are unique in nature and together they formed a formidable duo. Looking around from my spot on the grass, I could see the admiration and awe on people’s faces.

Ross LearmonthLike a wave that is formed deep out at sea and rides in to shore, so Ard and Ross, took us along for the ride and what a ride – the music engulfed us all.

Big thanks to Gavin Minter who never ceases to amaze me with his organizational skills. Gavin himself is a brilliant musician. Check out his latest video:

Follow him on his page:

Check out the interview with Gavin on News 24 – this will motivate you to get to future Folk Festivals

Follow the Cape Town Folk ‘n Acoustic Musical Festival page on Facebook to keep up to date with events:

Music has changed my life and I love being part of a bigger picture.

Thank you for reading my blog. To read more about previous Folk Festivals, click on the links:


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Cape Town Folk ‘n Acoustic Festival at Kirstenbosch Gardens

Cascade Manor cascades5This year, the day of ‘love’ which is known as Valentine’s Day, fell on a Saturday and I for one, was filled with joy at the thought, as I had heard that Watershed was playing a valentine’s gig at Cascade Manor in the picturesque town of Paarl –home to some of the finest Winelands in our country.

Let me paint the picture, of what lay ahead for the night, so to speak.

A night’s accommodation which included a four course dinner by Frank Marks (renowned Chef), with wine pairing and VIP golden circle tickets to watch Watershed!! To say I was a tad excited, would be an understatement.

Frank Marks – Frank went to cooking school at- wait for it……… ‘Sillwood’  and there after worked at ‘La Colombe’ for 2 years. Frank then went on to work at The Test Kitchen. He went to London to work for Heston Blumenthal at The Fat Duck and at ‘Dinner By Heston’ and eventually returned to South Africa to work for the Pot Luck Club and at The Test Kitchen. Frank has now opened his own restaurant, namely Borage.

Close friends had decided to join us for the evening and what better way to break bread and enjoy a romantic evening.

cascades12 IMG_6317Driving up to the Manor conjured up images in my mind of a magical fairyland with a cascading waterfall. The majestic Klein Drakenstein Mountains lights up the sky as  the backdrop to the Manor. Upon arrival, I could see that the magical idea was to become a reality. Cascade Manor did not disappoint in any way.

bedroomAfter booking into one of the fifteen beautifully decorated rooms which the Manor offers, we entered the dining terrace that overlooks a valley of trees and hills, sprawling lawn and pool area in front of us. T the right side of the premises a sandy pathway lined with olive trees leads you up to the captivating waterfall – I’m guessing the name ‘cascade’ was inspired by this beauty. A sense of peace surrounded my soul, as I filled my eyes with every inch of glory that is nature itself.

We ordered a tasty lunch off the lunch menu, which is very reasonably priced and beautifully presented. After lunch we enjoyed a quick nap before getting ready for the night of all nights. I was awoken to the sounds of music playing.

band1revisedPeeping out from behind the curtain, I noticed an opening band ‘wooing’ the audience with their sound, so to speak. Upon doing a little research, I established the band fly under the banner ‘Triveno Smith Music’ – they played covers to perfection.

band5 band6band2Their genre includes : Genre: Indie Pop/Rock, Blues.

I would be keen to learn more of them.  Check them out on Facebook: or take a listen here:


cascades1 IMG_6332 cascades10As we entered the terrace the tables had been beautifully laid out with glassware and crisp white linen – fine dining was the order of the night. The setting was as perfect as could be expected for an unforgettable evening. As I glanced out over the valley I saw the lawn spread out like a thick carpet and couples had already booked their picnic spot for the evening. Bales of hay were scattered around and the delightful sound of children’s giggles could be heard all around us. The children were having a great time on the jungle gym and those on the trampoline were jumping up and down to the beat of the music.

We were then approached by our waiter, who may I add was ‘oh so charming’. He gave us a sneak overview of what we were to expect from our dinner and wine pairing. My mouth literally watered at the thought of it all.


The dinner was truly as scrumptious and delicious as the photos reveal.

cascades8 cascades9To find out more about this utterly fabulous 4 star Manor – which also boasts a full Spa, check out their website –


cascades14 cascades15watershed2After dessert and the opening act, I spotted the boys from Watershed as they took to the stage. An intense feeling of exhilaration filled me, as this was the moment I was waiting for. It was to be my third time watching the band and I knew that the audience was in for an experience that would live in their hearts and minds long after the night had ended.

Watershed’s music captivates your mind and soul and you walk away with a sense of bewilderment at the pure mystery of it all. Timeless, classic and elegant are three words that are synonymous with Watershed.

watershed14Craig Hind’s voice charms, beguiles and touches all the senses. The culmination of the surroundings, the tasty feast and now this just completed the picture of the fairytale evening.

watershed40 watershed17watershed6Each band member is an accomplished musician in their own right.

watershed3A lovely lady joined the band for the evening and played the violin for all it’s worth.

Near the end of the evening, Craig thanked everyone for coming through and the band left the stage – disappointment filled me, but a couple of minutes there after they returned with smiles filling their faces and proceeded to play a few more of their incredible songs – the crowd lapped them up from beginning to end. I could share pages and pages of all their achievements to date; the list goes on and on. Watershed continues to take the country and world by storm.

watershed60watershed55Like a beautiful pearl, their music continues to shine and bring untold beauty to many hearts.

To read previous blogs I have written about the band, find them here:

To find out more about Watershed or find them in your area, check them out on Facebook:-

Watch them on You Tube:

 Their personal page links:-

Craig Hinds (Vocals, Piano, Acoustic guitar);

Howie Combrink (Drums)

James Sunney (Bass)

Gideon Botes (Electric and Acoustic Guitar)

The setting was perfect and an unforgettable night was had by all. Friendship, music, good food, relaxation and last, but certainly not least, love, was what this day encapsulated in every sense of the word.

Cascade Manor managed to bring it all together – ambience and a truly ‘soulful’ evening. Big thanks!


Watershed at Cascade Manor for Valentine’s Day

JUST JINJERJust Jinjer is a name that is synonymous with South African people, but it doesn’t just end there. The band has shared a stage with many international bands – The Goo Goo Dolls, Annie Lennox, Razorlight, Ludacris, just to mention a few. Just Jinjer have also performed support duties, and shared the bill with many international stars such as U2, Counting Crows, Def Leppard, INXS, Maroon 5, One Republic, Hootie and the Blowfish, The Strokes, and many more. Just Jinjer is a band that does us proud throughout South Africa and the world. Their success as a band just continues to grow and grow.




























The band comprises of –

Ard Matthews 
Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards

Brent Harris
Drums, Vocals

Denholm Harding
Bass, Vocals

I will never forget the day I heard their song ‘What he Means’ playing on the radio for the first time. Instant goose bumps ran over me, as this song was so apt for our nation. It still gives me goose bumps when I hear it. A song, that I am sure was written with much conviction and compassion – a song that speaks to the heart of every man kind.

Listen and watch :

At the incredible announcement that the band was heading to Café Roux, I did a little jig for joy. The mere fact that South Africa’s biggest rock band in history was heading to our little tip of the world was music to my ears. I eagerly paid and booked tickets, not wanting to miss out on my very first show featuring the one and only, Just Jinjer.

People enjoying the musicIt was a day that was sunny and bright, not a hint of a South-Easter around– almost as if the day was chosen just for this momentous occasion. Families gathered on their blankets and children played games and raced up and down the luscious green lawn. Café Roux is such a picturesque venue with the beauty of the mountain in the background and trees surrounding the premises. The tables were filled to capacity and I could sense that the people occupying the tables had planned to be there purely for this – a special moment in time.

Yum yum burgersJust Jinjer took to the stage as our burgers were placed in front of us by the ever so friendly staff. People around me eagerly started clapping and cheering. From young to old, Café Roux was packed out like never before. A picture that will always be recorded in my mind – a community coming together to live life and share in life’s finer moments.

From beginning to end, the boys gave it their all. Ard Matthews has a voice like no one I have ever had the privilege to meet.

The sheer power and strength resonates deep within one’s soul long after the show has ended. The band sang and played with all of their heart.

crowd6Ard entertained us by walking on tables to get to the crowds, bending down and engaging the people with his charismatic personality. Squeals of delight filled the air, as he handed out bottles of wine to the crowd. At one stage, I saw Ard bend down to sing to a little toddler, who was banging his drinking cup with a spoon in tune to the music. This is the nature of Ard. The man is a born entertainer of people – young and old from all walks of life. There is no denying, that there is a strong affinity between the band members and this is no small wonder considering their years of shared music and shows in towns far and wide across our country.

Last year I attended the Cape Town Folk and Acoustic Festival where he teamed up with Vusi Masikela – the audience were enthralled by the power of his voice and stage personality. An unforgettable night was had. Read about it here:


crowd2The day sadly came to an end and I felt truly blessed to have been part of it.

If you would like to find out more about Just Jinjer or Ard Matthews, here are the links:



Just Jinjer hits Cafe Roux


pic45Shaun Jacobs visited Café Roux last week and the band was booked to perform two shows. Last year September the band visited our valley and had not one, but four sold out shows!!  Upon hearing that they were heading our way, I booked my tickets early, as  I didn’t want to miss out.

edit7There was a visible buzz as my friend and I arrived at Café Roux. People were gathered around tables enjoying their dinner with friends and family enjoying the beauty of the day before taking their seats indoors. We had booked for dinner and we were looking forward to our usual specialty – burgers. I have yet to discover a place that makes burgers that melt in your mouth with every bite.

From the ambiance that is Cafe Roux, to the waiters, the place stands out above the rest. Cafe Roux offers not only good food, but entertainment from some of the country’s finest musicians and acts. Shortly before 8.30 we were led to our table, which may I add, was right in front of the band – how awesome is that?

Excitement filled the air as people started taking their seats in anticipation.

blog2 blog1I love watching a solo act, but since watching this band, I have felt myself completely hooked to the whole band thing.  The true connection between the three of them, namely Shaun, Craig and Andrew is significant. This is possibly what makes them so solid as a band and it comes across to the audience with every word and sound. Shaun has a powerful voice and their music has a distinctive folk/rock feel which most people love and can relate to. The two songs that truly made it for them ‘Love Can’ and ‘At The End Of The Road’ are performed with true passion and sincerity and the crowd cannot help but sing along as if the song has become a regular on their lips.



pic50If I can describe their performance in a couple of words – it can be compared to a mighty thunder storm, some songs rumble gently and build up to a mighty crescendo, while others are so strong and powerful they ignite you like a bolt of lightning, flashing across the room, electrifying everyone present with an electric current, yet when Shaun sings ballads, you can sense the tenderness of the moment and a peaceful presence settles across the room, as if the storm has passed and a freshness fills each heart.

News hot off the press – Shaun shared that the band are currently getting ready to produce their next album, which will possibly be released in April/May 2015. I am sure, this in itself is music to everyone’s ears. I know South Africa is going to love what the band brings in the next couple of months and personally I cannot wait!

If you would like to read the review of their show in September, follow the link:

To find out all their news, here are their links:

Follow my Facebook page to find out about latest events, news etc –


Shaun Jacobs at Cafe Roux


Saturday Gangs of Ballet were scheduled to play at Cafe Roux and it was a rather bleak day with the South Easter pumping and dark clouds forming, however, I knew without a shadow of a doubt, that no matter how gloomy the weather, the music would warm the hearts of those gathered around. I had booked two tickets a couple of months back and a couple of days before the show, I noticed that Cafe Roux were running a competition, so I took a chance and entered. I received a tweet from them to say that I am the lucky winner of a double set of tickets! What a lovely surprise, as it gave me the opportunity to invite not just my friend, but my son along with a mate of his.

At 11am, I headed out to book my spot under the trees – the early bird catches the worm they say. Let me clarify the show was only to kick off at 3pm, but nothing was going to get in the way of me getting the best spot possible. As I arrived, I saw people unloading sound equipment and proceeding to set up for the event. The reality dawned on me, that this was not just a little show that was about to unfold before my eyes, but a very professional one at that.

I knew the crowds would arrive early, so I made sure we left home around 1.30. As we drove along Chapman’s Peak Drive, I noticed a number of cars already parked along the road outside Cafe Roux. Just as well I decided to also park outside, as the parking lot was chock and block when we walked in. The lunch crowd had arrived and joyous laughter rippled through the air.

As usual, Café Roux’s staff welcomed us with a warm smile. The staff is always on top form and if I could give a restaurant in the valley the award for the best staff, they would win hands down.

The owner’s philosophy – “We wanted to create a special place where we could sit outside in the sun with our family and friends, eating great food, drinking our favourite wine, listening to music. Simply enjoying life…”

Lindi, Paul & Bern



The line up for December and January at Cafe Roux

image42 After watching the opening act for Gangs of Ballet I wanted to scream out a big thank you to Cafe Roux. Not only do they have some of the best burgers I have ever tasted and we won’t mention all the sweet temptations on display, but they expose the community to a diverse cultural experience of artists. Each and every time, I come away richer for the experience.

Shortly before 3pm, I could see the lawn was jam packed with people enjoying an afternoon of friendship, family bonding and glorious food.

As I am a regular at Cafe Roux, the manager came over to say that if I would like to take photos I am welcome to come sit at a little table right in front of the stage! My friend and I were ecstatic at the news and quickly ran to take our seats.


Bongeziwe Mabandla The time had arrived and a young man by the name Bongeziwe Mabandla took to the stage. No surprise that Bongeziwe is a two time SAMA nominee! I was bowled over by his voice! The saying goes, ‘first impressions count’ well this was certainly true for Bongeziwe.

Sitting there, I felt as if his music had opened a door to my soul – his voice has a tone that sent shivers down my spine – unforgettable and beautiful, are two words to describe maybe a touch of what we heard, as his voice washed over us.

Simple words cannot do his music justice. Bongeziwe claims his influences are afro, dub, rock, funk and roots music, but there is an undeniable folk sound to his music.


Taking it all in, my thoughts were ‘how can this young man possibly have such soul – he is too young to have a heart of a great soul singer! The crowds lapped him up and clapped when he finished his set.


Bongeziwe Mabandla


To find out more about this incredible singer/songwriter, check out all the links below. Bongeziwe not only travels around our own beautiful country, but has been making wave’s worldwide!

To keep up to date with all his news and to find him in your area, follow him on Facebook:


Here are the links:

Expresso –

You Tube –



Gangs Of Ballet

The band to take to the stage next needed no introduction, as everyone present had booked a spot, either on the lawn or a table, for this moment in time.

Gangs of Ballet from Durban were up!


On Vocals/Electric Guitar: Brad Klynsmith


Bass Guitar: Hardus de Beer,

Bass Guitar: Hardus de Beer,


Keyboard: Jono Rich


Josh Klynsmith on Drums

Allow me to rewind for a moment – one day, while driving my kids to school, a song came on the radio that instantly sent shivers down my spine, it was‘Hello Sweet World’. Once home, I immediately ‘googled’ the song and much to my surprise and instant delight, I discovered that it was a song by a local S.A. band ‘Gangs of Ballet’. Little did I realize at the time, that in about 6 months I would see them perform for real at the Summer Concerts held at Kirstenbosch Gardens. I was fortunate enough to share this experience with a close friend. It was a night that both of us will remember and cherish forever. It was no small surprise that Gangs of Ballet won the MK Award for ‘Best Newcomer’ with ‘Hello Sweet World’. The song was featured on the airwaves of VH1 USA and was also chosen for the opening theme for VH1’s reality TV series, Dr Drew’s Rehab. The video has to date hit the 171 000 mark on You Tube. Listening to songs, one often loses interest over time and boredom sets in, but Gangs of Ballet’s haunting music grips you in a sincere and profound way – the sound and melodic quality of their songs are truly unforgettable.


From beginning to end, an electrifying experience was seen and felt. Not only are they accomplished musicians, but firm friends and family – Brad and Josh are brothers. The connection between the guys was visible and this spills over to their music. Their music appeals very much to the young crowd, but looking around I could see old and young enjoying the beauty of their sound. One lady in particular was a dedicated fan who couldn’t get enough and asked for some special requests to which they gladly responded with smiles and then swept us away yet again. Hard work and dedication has brought them their eminent success and their fame  grows, as they continue to show the world what they are made of.





image16To find out more and keep up to date with their latest news, follow them on Facebook :

Watch them on You Tube:

As we walked away at the end of the day, we were once again aware of the gloominess of the day, which as of that moment had gone unnoticed – this is the wonder of music –you are swept away and escape into another world – your own reality or world is forgotten for a while – it captures you if you allow it.

Gangs Of Ballet at Cafe Roux

watershedgroup2Watershed, who hails from Johannesburg, is a name that is mentioned far and wide in our country. The band regularly tour S.A. as their popularity is widespread. People  from town to town flock to venues to see and experience them. Hearts of many have been touched by their music.

When I heard they were touring Cape Town I knew without a shadow of a doubt that I would get to one of their shows. It was difficult deciding on a particular venue, as we have so many beautiful venues in and around Cape Town, however, I decided to experience the Constantia Nek Restaurant, as it would be a first for me.

Close friends- Claude, Michelle, Matt, Rouvanne and Bennie joined us for the evening. I would like to thank them for taking the time out and enjoying it with us- possibly as much as I did.

Surrounded by beautiful trees that seem to touch the sky- the drive through the suburb of Constantia in itself, is a beautiful experience.


watershed8 howie3constantianekrestaurant1Upon arriving at the restaurant (let me paint the picture), I felt like I had been transported back to my childhood, to magical woodland stories where fairies, elves and magical creatures came to life, but in this case the magic I had come for was the music. The venue has a large facility which can comfortably host a large gathering. Constantia Nek Restaurant is the oldest restaurant in Cape Town and is steeped in history.

???????????????????????????????Visitors can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as morning and afternoon teas. A quiet conference venue is available for quiet groups . Guests can enjoy drinks around the fireplace, prior to being seated for a banquet dinner, office party, product launch, cocktail function or dinner-dance. Professional staff will ensure a memorable event and address the needs of their visitors. Accommodation is also available. So, all in all, Constantia Nek Restaurant is a versatile venue and can cater for large groups, families and individuals. The food was tasty and service was tops.

To find out more about the restaurant, or keep up to date with news and events, here is their link:


howieHowie Combrink forms an integral part of Watershed and he kicked the evening off with a couple of his own songs. Howie is very much a singer/songwriter in his own right. His music has an acoustic/folk sound and some of his songs have featured on radio stations around the country. His songs are easy on the ear, but there are some foot-tapping funky ones too. Looking around the room I could see the people were enjoying themselves immensely. Howie is a natural on stage and you could see he felt right at home. News has it, that Howie started playing drums at the tender age of 8 – no small wonder he is such a natural when it comes to music. My favourite must be ‘Crazy Minds’ which has a cool reggae beat. Howie is a versatile artist that brings a lot to the table. To find out more about Howie and his news, follow him on Facebook –

Watch his song ‘Don’t Be Sayin Goodbye’ on You Tube –

Take a listen to some of his tunes here –


jonoJono Grayson was second up. It was in fact the second time I was to experience his music. Jono is a 22 year old Musician living in Cape Town. He currently has 3 singles that are featuring on the radio. His newest single is called ‘Alive‘. When thinking of Jono, John Mayer  and Michael Buble naturally spring to mind – as his voice brings a subtle jazz sound as well as a pop feel. His tone is young and he can just about do any cover to perfection. Jono charms and woos his audience wherever he goes. This young man works hard for what he wants in life and I can see he is destined for a beautiful music career. Jono recently won the Marshall Music Showcase Sessions competition and will be performing at Electric Vines.

Follow him on Facebook to find out where to find him and all his latest news:

Check out his website – Jono is also on Soundcloud:

Watch him on You Tube :


craig1Now the reason for the evening had arrived and I could see the excitement mounting as Watershed took to the stage. The band consists of – Craig Hinds (Vocals, Piano, Acoustic guitar), Howie Combrink (Drums), James Sunney (Bass) and last but not least, Gideon Botes (Electric and Acoustic Guitar).

Nostalgia washed over me, as memories of listening to their music over the years came flooding back. Their music has a melancholic affect on me -taking me back to a place and time in space. Music has  a way of creating experiences, emotions, stories and images in one’s mind and the lyrics stir up feelings – this in itself is a mystery, but this is the beauty of Watershed – their music encapsulates it all. I dragged my eyes away for just a moment to see whether others were as moved as me and I was met with faces that mirrored a deep soul experience that was akin to my own.


james2craig3watershed6howie6The band was birthed in 1998 with a success that just grew with time. Their song Indigo Girl became famous when a German Radio DJ heard it while on holiday in SA and then commenced to play it on radio in Germany. The band toured Europe and they have played at major festivals, concerts and many venues throughout SA. Their list of achievements and accolades are just too many to mention. If you haven’t caught up with them, don’t miss out, there is still time! To find out more follow them on Facebook:

Their website:

You Tube –




Watershed at Constantia Nek Restaurant

My happy moment meeting The Lumineers

My happy moment meeting The Lumineers


Stelth, Neyla, Wesley, Jeremiah and Ben

Stelth, Neyla, Wesley, Jeremiah and Ben



Fire ‘n Ice hosted a media conference for The Lumineers – one of the hottest bands from America to hit our shores. The Lumineers are well known for their songs – “Ho Hey” and “Stubborn Love”, as I entered the conference room it was buzzing.

Simone from One-Eyed Jack extended an invite to Fanbase Magazine and I was privileged to attend this awesome conference on their behalf.

Spokespersons from SABC 3’s Expresso Show, 5fm, Goodhope FM and Top Billing were in attendance, just to mention a few.

At 1pm sharp the band, namely The Lumineers, consisting of Wesley, Jeremiah, Stelth, Benjamin and last but certainly not least, Neyla entered the room.
Cameras flashed wildly as everyone wanted a piece of the action so to speak.no2

A spokesperson for 5fm welcomed everyone and opened the floor for questions.

Some of the questions that were asked:

What has your experience of S.A. been so far and what has surprised you? Wesley said ‘The safari – seeing the elephants charging’. Stelth answered: ‘I climbed Lion’s Head this morning and your city has spectacular views’.

S.A. is very far from America, with that in mind, did you expect mass popularity from SA and did you have a strategy? Wesley answered: ‘we have tried to expand and grow the band on every level, but the answer is ‘no’, there was no strategic plan’.

What do you think of playing in bars? Jeremiah answered: ‘We have played many, but one of the best experiences was playing in a hollowed out Church that had been turned into a bar. Without saying it was some kind of religious experience, we felt that God has a vision for the band, it was a special experience. It is more about connections then just the band. It is more about the people. We want to be part of something bigger and we found solace in doing this.’

Ben said: ‘Coming to Denver was a like mindedness among us, with us all coming on board. It was like finding long lost brothers with the same mannerisms. We all fit so well and it felt like it was meant to be.’

What has experience of S.A. people been like? ‘Friendly and overwhelmingly cool’.

Have you encountered some die-hard fans? Ben replied: ‘We would be nothing without them. When we played one gig in Dublin one emotional fan told us after the show she thought we were arrogant and insecure as we took too long to come out. She said she flew all the way from Hungary. A Mexican fan cried so much at one gig it was touching to see’.

Will you do a tribute tomorrow for Madibe, seeing as it is one year since his passing? Wesley replied: ‘we try not to publicize such things as people take it too personally; we choose to stick to the music. People also try to twist your words’.

Do you watch other bands? Neyla answered: ‘yes it is very important to see the other side and to feel the energy – to remember what we do and why we do it’.

How do you feel about opening bands? ‘We try to remember that anyone can be in this position.’

What does the future hold and what are you currently working on? Wesley replied: ‘We have made 100 songs, but only produce the best – namely the top 11. We will continue to work towards a specific sound until we find it.’

Tell us about the Hunger Games? ‘We think it is really cool, but we don’t want to be known as the Hunger Games band.’

What was a memorable gig for you? Jeremiah shared ‘playing at the Hall of Music in Brooklyn for my brother’s birthday, it was special as our family was there.’

Sleth shared – ‘seeing the crowds in Buenos Aires jumping and clapping in time, they nailed the rhythm – it had a wave effect, it was cool.’

Neyla shared – ‘Red Rocks was a magical show – it was in Colorado, literally in our back garden. It was pouring with rain and despite the show having been cancelled a few times, the show went ahead.’

Wesley shared – ‘we did an LA show and were robbed of all our instruments. Many bands shared their equipment with us and this meant a lot. We played many house shows after this.’

So the time had come to an end and I walked away having new insight into this incredible band known as The Lumineers, who not only are the humblest down to earth people, but some of the finest I have had the privilege of meeting.

bw2 bw1

I wish them everything of the very best for their stay in South Africa and even more, for their future which looks as bright as a shiny star.

Find them on Facebook :

The Lumineers – Press Conference at Fire and Ice


Soul Sessions SA Fundraiser For Paige Mac

Photos by Ryan Miller

The much anticipated evening had finally arrived and I felt like a child. A music evening of a difference was to be held at Alive Café in Muizenberg. Alive Cafe Creative Experience Hub is an artistic studio, theatre and live music venue with a coffee shop and eatery that supports the creative space and initiatives. Alive Café want to inspire creativity. The staff are phenomenal and they make delicious meals and coffees. To find out more about them, follow them on Facebook:

A little background on the reason for the evening, so to speak – Paige MacMahon, the name that should speak for itself. Paige is well known throughout S.A. in her personal capacity and as part of her band, Paige Mac.

Paige MacMahon came to Cape Town 3-4 years ago, with literally just her suitcase and a few prized possessions. When Paige and her best friend Kassie landed at Cape Town International they hailed a taxi. The taxi driver turned around and asked ‘where to?’ Without a moment’s hesitation, Paige replied ‘Long Street’, as this was a street that Paige had heard much about. That week, Paige and Kassie literally walked the streets of Cape Town looking for jobs. Little did Paige realize at the time, where her road would lead her. A couple of days later her cousin contacted her and invited her to come and visit him in Fish Hoek, namely Garry van Vuuren. A lot of stepping stones were being put into place as the adventure began to unfold.

Paige and Garry joined forces to form the band and it has grown in leaps and bounds. In the last two years Paige has opened for Lira at Sun City, appeared on Expresso and Top Billing just to mention a few.

After a magical couple of years of creating beautiful music together, Garry and Paige amicably decided to cut the bond due to work commitments on Garry’s part, as well as much needed family time.

Paige however didn’t have a car of her own and as such her income goes directly to taxi services to get her and her band to their gigs. This has become a very costly affair. Taxi services can charge anywhere between R250-R300 for a one way trip to Cape Town, hence the idea to have a much needed fundraiser, to raise funds for this purpose.

We decided to raise funds, however big or small to support Paige, as I feel very strongly about local community, I put a plan into action. Even if it is a drop in the ocean, it is a start and it will continue to grow with time and possibly more exciting initiatives will be birthed, as a result.

Malcolm1When I initially decided to run with the idea, I didn’t realize that it would escalate to the proportion that it did. Musicians voluntarily came on board to offer their services, without receiving a cent in return. Our MC for the night, Malcolm Alexander, came on board and did a top notch job of entertaining all the guests for the evening. Malcolm may I add – you were born to do this; I think you missed your calling in life. Many prizes were up for grabs, ranging from Wimpy Vouchers, Holiday Accommodation, Hair Vouchers, Jewellery and massages. Mark, our ‘sound guy’ did a superb job of making sure that everything sounded just right. Ryan Miller was our official photographer of the evening and all I can say is, Ryan you captured the essence of what the evening was about. THANK YOU for these amazing photos.

As the people grabbed a drink and nibbled on snacks, the evening unfolded before our eyes.

jen1First up was the beautiful Jennifer Eaves, who had everyone spellbound. Jennifer started singing at the tender age of 16 and hasn’t stopped. Her voice sends shivers down the spine. Her vocal range is incredible and her lyrics are deep, personal and meaningful. Jennifer was part of the Cape Town Folk ‘n Acoustic Festival this year and at the time,I felt honoured to be sitting in the Baxter Theatre watching this gifted lady sing with such soul and beauty.

I remember people clapping wildly after her performance. Her name has been on many lips since and this is no small surprise.



To find out more about Jennifer, follow her on Facebook:

Donny1Next up was Donny Barnett (also known as Mr Quack/Donald) and MellyBird. I had spoken to Donny when I first met him, as part of the Mamma Gogo Intiative, which is just one of many projects he steers. I think it would be unfair, not to share that he is a very accomplished artist in every sense of the word. Donny has many years of experience in painting, graphic design and the like, check out some of his fine work here: He does work on commission basis for many clients and is open to new projects.

A couple of months ago the Longbeach Mall hosted the Cape Town World Design Capital incentive and welcomed Donny’s initiative to bring on board traders from all walks of life. They came from Masiphumele as well as further up the line, showcasing their creative works of art. It was such a joy to see handcrafted items for sale by our very own locals. So often we tend to support big business, so watching shoppers place money into the hands of those who worked long hours to proudly produce such fine pieces, was a heartwarming experience. The chandeliers were some of the hottest items for sale. Clothing, jewellery and many other beautiful works were on display. The feeling of brotherhood was visibly felt, as one walked through the mall. Donny’s purpose is to empower the community by reaching out to them and enabling them through these kinds of initiatives and this is just a very small part of a very big picture. Donny is part of an initiative called Mamma Gogo, which is a non-profit organization. Read more here:

Now that I have painted the background of the artist, let us move on to the gifting of music. Donny is a team player in every sense of the word and he approached Mellybird to join him as a duo for his performance for the evening. Mellybird is a unique young lady who specializes in flute and violin and her passion is visibly displayed on her face for all to see. It has been twelve years since this lovely lady played and we left richer for the experience.

mellybirdMellybird also has her own little business – namely MellyBird&You, which has an artistic flair to it. Find out more on her Facebook page:

We wish her well with her future career.

Donny’s opening song swept across the room like a powerful wind – intense and gusty.

It was as if something within him was waiting to be released. This is the power of music and it was felt by everyone in the room, because that is what wind is to nature, it is a force that sweeps through nature –invisible, yet visible by what it touches – a deep mystery. I heard some folk whisper ‘he sounds like Neil Young’.

Keep your eyes firmly peeled, as I am sure we will be seeing a lot more of these two talented artists.

stonejets1Next up was the Stone Jets – Given and Manfred make a fine pair and together they create music that tugs at the heartstrings. From the very first moment I experienced them I was moved. Given has such soul.

His voice can melt the hardest of hearts. On a cold winter’s night his voice would bring internal warmth, which will start out as a small flame and soon it will ignite and become a glowing fire. When I listen to Stone Jets my mind envisions the soul singers of an era gone by, an emotional expression is felt.

Given has a natural gift and if there was a fitting name for him, it would have to be ‘Mr Personality’, because his personality and stage presence is something rare – it is a gift that he shares with great gusto. From sad songs to joyous ones he brings it alive on that stage.

Manfred is Given’s right hand man and does back-up vocals and plays guitar as well as bass and keyboards. Manfred has been playing for about 11 years and started at the tender age of 14. Manfred literally became addicted to making his dream come true. He runs his very own sound and recording studio. These guys are on a roll. Catch them at Blonde&Beard every Sunday afternoon in December. It is an experience that you will never forget. Their links: and and

steve1Steve Van is a man that has a heart for folk and rock. Since listening to Steve’s album I have discovered true beauty in his unique style of music which isn’t just this, but so much more. His music is easy on the ear and when listening to him a certain peace washes over my soul. I had the pleasure of meeting Steve when he agreed to do a few couch jams at the Longbeach Mall in aid of the Mamma Gogo Initiative.  Steve’s music ‘wows’ people wherever he goes and he has played extensively throughout the country. His songs are written skillfully and with much thought and feeling. Steve’s latest album is entitled “Words for Walls” which is a collection of his acoustic/rock/alt rock songs from past to present.

Steve’s “Into the Sky” was used in the television ad for Volkswagen, namely “Saying Goodbye to Citi Golf“. One of Steve’s most powerful songs written is Faceless (Rhino Song), it was written to raise awareness of the disgraceful act of rhino poaching in Africa. Together with Goosebump Film Productions, Steve has produced a beautiful music video for Faceless, which can be viewed on the following YouTube link: – I know of people that have become firm fans through the years and some attend almost every show, this in itself speaks volumes.

To find out when Steve is performing in your area, follow him on Facebook and listen to his songs here:

Sean1Sean Koch was up next and I was deeply touched that Sean agreed to come and join us for our evening, despite it being his birthday. Writing his own songs, he writes them creatively and he has a strong reggae/alternative folk feel to his music. Sean has played the djembe from an early age, which he taught himself. The rhythm and beat subtly speaks through his smooth guitar riffs and softly sung lyrics and it is this fresh and individual sound which has garnered him a rapid breakthrough into the incredibly rich and diverse Cape Town music scene.

His creative style is so evident of those who hail from Kommetjie, a quaint little seaside village where mountains, sea and nature surround you. It was not the first time I was experiencing Sean as a musician, as I had watched him at the Cape Farmhouse about a year ago.

Many gathered together to listen to Sean’s music, which has the ability to get the feet tapping, the heads bopping and soon thereafter the people were swaying to the hypnotic sounds. This particular day the community were in high spirits as they danced freely under the African Sky.

To find out more about Sean, here are his links:

Joshua1Just before Paige Mac were about to take to the stage as the final act, a man dressed in black picked up a guitar and walked onto the stage – this man was none other than Joshua Grierson.

Joshua has just returned from his final folk tour from up country and it was a delight to have him join us for the evening, let alone sing a few of his heart rendering songs. Joshua is currently doing his last couple of shows before he undertakes a brand new venture, which promises to be exciting and thrilling. Joshua is well known throughout South Africa, having performed at most of the major festivals – his name is well known and is featured extensively in the media world. He astounds audiences with his captivating performances and many a review has been written about him. Let me share one:

The sweat rolls down his brow
His entire body aches and weaves with some internal, now exposed dance
His fingers are rattling on his fret board like scattered bones on the sand
And the feet connected to his rubber legs, are stomping a new hole in the stage

 Passion and soul – this is Joshua Grierson in a nutshell.

Joshua is one of the most versatile artists I have experienced. His music is like a wild roller coaster ride which can take you to new heights. As one of Joshua’s greatest fans, I eagerly await this new identity/ride which will be unveiled soon. I wish him well on his journey, which I am sure will be a very fruitful one. Here are his links to keep up to date with where he is performing and all the latest news:

Paige Mac took to the stage at the end of the evening and did what they do best. A band that is entertaining, soothing, enthralling, captivating, beguiling and delightful – just a couple of words that encapsulate what Paige Mac is about.

paigemac1Once experienced, Paige’s music infiltrates your heart where it remains. It is like a budding flower that keeps getting more and more beautiful with time.

A little quote about their music – Paige Mac’s sound could be described as progressive acoustic soul with a folk rock edge. However they chose to describe it one thing is for certain, it appeals to people with diverse range of music tastes. With Paige Mac’s ability to cross cultural, racial and age boundaries, this band is going places!

As a band they give their all in each and every performance and each show is something new and fresh and they touch lives wherever they go.  Paige Mac, I know the future is yours and it is a very bright one. Keep shining that beautiful light.

Follow Paige Mac on Facebook:

So a beautiful night came to an end. I want to say a big thank you to everyone that played such an important role in bringing this night together. Without you, it would not have been possible. Thank you!








Soul Sessions SA’s First Fundraiser