One of the highest selling artists of all time, Kenny G has single-handedly made the saxophone a hit amongst music lovers.
Perhaps it is the raspy mid-tones of the saxophone that lend it an air of intimacy, or maybe it’s just good positioning, but the sax has earned its reputation as an instrument that is much cooler than the harp or the flute or the oboe or the clarinet. When you add a good-looking man who has a long flowing mane of hair, the explosive combo is smooth and warm, like a good brandy. Of course Kenny doesn’t just play the sax, but he has become synonymous with it. Read more
It’s been going since 1990, and Easter 2015 will be the 26th year for the Splashy Fen music festival.
I have yet to learn why the music event is called Splashy Fen, though I do believe that the farm it is held on, near Underberg in the Kwa Zulu-Natal Drakensberg area, is called Splashy Fen. Read more
The small town of Northam in Limpopo Province comes to life every August. Technically it’s spring if you calculate that you are halfway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox and you don’t factor in seasonal lag, but you can be sure the coldness of the lingering winter will be around still.
No matter. You and your mates are gonna pitch a tent and gorge yourself on food, drinks and music for 3 unforgettable days. This is Woodstock in the bush, and you’re gonna love it. Read more
No doubt the mysterious Frenchman’s greatest gift to the world musically has been “Ballad for Adeline.”
Composed by Paul de Senneville and Olivier Toussaint in 1976, the co-writers could never have imagined how big the song would become, because disco was all the rage, and they did not believe that a low-key soft ballad would hack it in the crazy and fickle world of popular music. Read more
This is not a name that rolls off the tongue like Madonna or Michael Jackson or Elvis, but Albert Hammond has had an amazing music career anyway.
A native of the UK, he has done a considerable body of work in the US, and chances are good that you at least know one of his songs, some of which include “The Peacemaker,” “I’m a Train,” “It never rains in Southern California,” and “Free Electric Band.” Read more
The smash hit musical based on the music of those 4 Swedes (well, actually 3 Swedes and a half-Norwegian) returns to the Teatro at Montecasino in Johannesburg, for a limited season run from Tuesday 24 March 2015 to Sunday 19 April 2015.
The musical had its beginnings in the early work of ABBA, when songwriters Benny Andersson and BjörnUlvaeus were writing material for the band. They performed pieces of another musical they had written at some of their concerts, and after the band bust up in the early 80s, Benny and Björn went on to write the music for the smash show Chess, which spawned the hits “One Night in Bangkok” and “I know him so well,” and turned artists Murray Head, Elaine Paige and Barbara Dixon into international stars. Read more
On 1 October the Lyric Theatre at Gold Reef City hosted Sipho ‘Hotstix’ Mabuse in concert. It’s been 30 years since his hit “Burnout” tore up the charts, and, according to the write-up for his show, 50 years since he began his journey in song.
The show included PJ Powers and other members of the band he was part of, Harari, including Om Alec Khaoli, and I’m sure it was fantastic. I had the great privilege of working with Om Alec in the early days of my sojourn into contemporary music, and he not only helped a lot with the music, but also gave guidance and insight. Read more
What is it about summer that makes for a stunning concert experience?Well for one thing, the weather is gorgeous, and nowhere is this truer than in South Africa.
Provided that the thunderstorms play along, Johannesburg has deliciously balmy evenings that make for the perfect concert engagement. The recent turnout at the Vodacom in the City concert at Mary Fitzgerald Square in Newtown had the people of Jozi rocking until at least midnight in an explosion of light and colour. And then of course there are the beautifully set concerts in the park at both the Johannesburg Botanical Gardens and the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Gardens. Read more
Another successful year of the Joy of Jazz concerts has just concluded in Johannesburg. They took place at the end of September, which is of course South Africa’s most cultural month. With Heritage Day as a public holiday on 24 September, the Southern Hemisphere spring yields concerts aplenty and music galore.
One could argue that the Joy of Jazz is Jozi’s version of the highly successful Cape Town International Jazz Festival, and one could further argue that the Cape Town version is based on the world-famous North Sea Jazz Festival. Read more
What do you do when you’re in love with a DJ? You sing about it! “I’m in love with a DJ” was Yvonne Chaka Chaka’s first hit way back in 1985, when she was just 19 years old.