I was looking forward to an evening of music on Monday night at the Barleycorn Music Club. A venue that I have heard only good things of, but not yet experienced – tonight would be the night! The Barleycorn Music Club has been around for more than 30 years.
In 1975 a group of musicians met to jam and share in their love of music. Over the span of 34 years, the Barleycorn Music Club has hosted many local, talented musicians, as well as visiting ones.
The club is a non-profit organization, so all funds go directly to supporting musicians. The club is all for home grown, original tunes. In previous years it was mostly centred on ‘traditional folk’ music with a strong ‘Bob Dylan’ focus and political protest songs were a regular feature. The MC of the evening was Nicholas le Mesurier and what a fine job he did of introducing the various artists.
To read more, check out their website, and join their mailing list to stay on top of upcoming events:
Or follow them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BarleycornMusicClub
After getting a long cold beer from the bar, we took our seats. Sitting there, I glanced over my shoulder and noticed that the place had filled up quickly. People were chatting excitedly around me, anticipating the night’s events. I could tell that it was a popular place as the people present seemed to fit right in and were clearly regulars at the Club.
The venue in itself, is cozy and warm, with a pleasant atmosphere. Situate in the heart of Claremont, it is very easy to find and the grounds are safe.
The line up for the evening including 4 different artist/bands and this was an appealing prospect.
First up was a man by the name of Craig Green.
From the inset I realized that here is a man, that loves music as much as he loves playing his guitar.
Craig’s music portrays a strong message. Sitting there listening to the words, I couldn’t help but be reminded of Bruce Springsteen, who the artist clearly admires and looks up to. Craig is not new to the music scene and has been around for many years, bringing his rock sound to those who are keen to listen.
I have since established, that Craig is part of a band called Bad Scooter. The band plays gigs in and around Johannesburg. So if you are keen to book them, or see them play, check out their website: http://badscooterband.weebly.com/
or follow them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BadScooterBandJohannesburg
Watch them on You Tube:
Next up was a chap by the name of JoRa (Yahyã) Rautenbach. JoRa impressed us all with his brilliant guitar playing, as well as his refined skill of playing a a Bansuri (Indian bamboo flute). It was definitely a first for me. JoRa fellow artists. JoRa‘s music has a strong Flamenco influence.
The music is so rich and powerful and it invoked visions of beautiful Spanish dancers elegantly gliding across the room.
I hope to see JoRa perform again, as he is a multi-talented artist and brought a unique feel to the evening. To listen go to his Soundcloud :
Follow him on Facebook to find out about his events : https://www.facebook.com/johan.j.rautenbach
After a short break, a young fellow by the name of Declan MacKay took to the stage. Declan had a group of admirers sitting at the back of the room that immediately responded to him and I could tell that he had talent just from listening to the excited screams. Declan engaged the audience, which was a nice touch. He shared that after completing his degree at UCT, he plans to head back to his country of birth, namely Zimbabwe. Declan had us all spellbound and longing for more. His voice has a rich husky tone that grips you from beginning to end. Upon doing a little research, I discovered that Declan’s dad is also a musican, no small wonder then – it must run in the family.
As he stood there playing his guitar and singing all his original songs, I couldn’t help but think, here is a true ‘soulman’. With a voice and personality to boot, I have a feeling that Declan has a bright shining future in the music industry and he will not want for fans.
To catch him one last time, get down to Jackal & Hide in Cape Town this coming Thursday, 25 June. You will not be disappointed. Here is a link to their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Jackal.and.Hide/timeline
Last but certainly not least, was K, Ray and The Bird. The band has been playing in and around Cape Town for about 8 years and this was the first time I was to see them in action. To say I was super- excited would be an understatement. The time had arrived and we all sat expectantly as they took to the stage.
The band comprises of –
Karyn Stuart – bass guitar, violin, vocals
Raé Swart – piano, acoustic guitar, clarinet, saxophone, vocals
Gareth Asch – acoustic guitar, vocals
Emil Terhoven – drums and percussion
Mark Cloete – violin, piano, and occasionally the egg shaker
K, Ray and The Bird is a rock/blues band that play in and around Cape Town. Karyn has such a beautiful voice!
Her voice has a dreamy/surreal quality and as her voice infiltrated the airways it settled in my heart and touched me.
Together Gareth and Karyn harmonize to perfection. What drew my attention, was the powerful lyrics which hold a strong message.
Rae on Sax, adds a distinctive sound and what surprised me, was his ability to play several instruments.
Emil adds a funky groove to the band. Together the band have a unique sound and if you love Simon and Garfunkel – you will certainly love their sound. I could tell, that each and every band member, has a strong music background. Multi-talented and professional down to the last detail, this band brings so much to the table.
Two words to describe their music would be ‘uplifting’ and ‘inspiring’ – which is so needed in the times we live in. This is definitely a band for the here and now.
Listen to them on Soundcloud :