AWAKENINGS featuring Grierson Van Gend

Saturday 8 March 2014 a friend and I decided to have a girl’s night out and what better way could there be then ‘live’ music.

EDITaThis was a ‘first’ home gig as such and I had a feeling that it was going to be a lovely evening. ‘Awakenings’ is situate on a hill in Upper Towers Road, Muizenberg.  The venue is breathtaking beautiful and literally left me speechless.

We arrived early, two eager beavers smiling from ear to ear, anticipating the evening ahead.  With our drinks and snacks in hand we were welcomed in warmly by the host of the evening.

edit3aEDITbWe climbed stairs and then climbed some more stairs and once we arrived at the entrance we were amazed at what awaited us.  The room looks out on a lush garden and on the one side of the room there is an indoor garden and behind us a solid wall built out of stone.  The room was filled with comfy cushions and warm blankets – a lovely warm fire was burning on the garden side and I literally felt like I was in some private cave looking out at a beautiful forest.



At 7.30 the music started – Simon van Gend and Joshua Grierson are music collaborators that support one another in their individuality and together they complement one another.  Two unique souls that bring everything they have to the table as such and beautiful music is always made.  Life has moments of happiness, sadness, anger, peace, light, darkness, joy, pain, love and sometimes even hate.  When I listen to their music I can relate to it, because their music exposes all these different spheres and aspects of life.  Often we don’t want to deal with our emotions and issues we have with people, but when you are exposed to music, it opens your mind and heart and makes you reflect on these emotions; it makes you conscious of them and almost drives you to a place of wanting to confront the deeper aspects of relationship and building thereof.

I come away with a feeling of wanting to love harder and understand deeper.

When I look at Simon I see a quirky character, from his hair to his style of dress he just has this laid back style and I always think in my mind’s eye that Simon could not possibly ever experience a moment of anger.  His music has a way of penetrating your mind, in a quiet, almost meditative way. Like poetry to the soul, so Simon’s music is to the mind.  Starting there and creeping into the heart. Simon’s songs are about love and feelings and searching for love.

Watching Simon perched on his chair hugging his guitar you cannot help but think, here is a deep man.

Simon is also part of a band known as Simon & the Bande à Part – an introspective indie/folk/rock band from Cape Town, whose music has been described as a unique blend of folksie foot-tapping red wine fireside poetry. This trio, with Simon on vocals and acoustic guitar, Eric Michot (aka Mr Kito) on bass and Ross Campbell (Urban Creep, Benguela, Fetish) on drums, has released 4 albums to date.  Simon’s Bandcamp page is :  

-check it out.

Simon has a new project on the go – writing a song a week, here is the link if you would like to go take a listen:

Also check out his Facebook page:

His website:

You Tube Video:

ImageWhen looking at Joshua I see a man who has experienced life in every sense of the word. The road he has travelled has been a long, bumpy one and Joshua is always open and honest about his life.  He wears his truth, and his face tells a story.  His life is like an open book exposed for all to see. His music for me has always revealed the human nature and has made me think deeply about life and the complexities thereof.  Joshua speaks his truth through his music.

If you have been to his shows you will understand what I am saying.  Joshua is someone who shows his passion and energy with every ounce of his being. He lives it out for all to see on the stage.   Joshua has a natural way about expressing himself and never holds back.  I often find myself thinking of the deep powerful lyrics of his songs and how personal they are and how they have made me see myself.

PEEPSWe are all human, living in a broken world.  To me beauty is about humanness, truth and rawness.  To be able to be raw and vulnerable this is true beauty.

Joshua has a way of showing this through his music and I admire him for it. He is not pretentious, but genuine and real – what you see, is what you get.

There is no mask but an open face and open heart.

Joshua is constantly creating something new and listening to some of his new material I cannot help smile at what a new and fresh sound is coming through…from folk to pop – he never ceases to surprise.

Check out his Bandcamp page to listen to his new double-disc album, recorded live at Alma Cafe :

He will be touring Johannesburg and Durban soon, so go and check out his Facebook page to find out where and when:

Other links:

Image Simon sang and played some of his own songs and so did Josh, but when they sang together harmonizing and blending  their voices, it brought a tranquil feeling within and watching the people gathered I could see how the music stirred them deeply and they embraced it.

Two brilliant minds coming together, two hearts sharing their music and passion with a captive audience.

Together Simon and Joshua are known as Grierson Van Gend.

Check out their Facebook page here:

I hope there will be many more of these ‘home gigs’ to follow, as the feeling of ‘home’ was truly felt.


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