Wednesday, 27 May 2015

FRANCOIS VAN COKE: Toe Vind Ek Jou exceeds 500k views & live shows with Karen Zoid

Dominating the country’s  national headlines on the 8th of April were grave reports of xenophobia, the Eskom power crisis and protesters chaining themselves to the Paul Kruger statue in Pretoria.  On 8 April Francois van Coke and Karen Zoid released arguably the most beautiful ballad of the year, Toe Vind Ek Jou. This song instantly captured thousands of hearts all over the country, switching on a light in the dark. *(Read Marianne Thamm’s analysis: Between a statute and a soft place – Afrikaners’ ongoing existential quest for belonging.  Daily Maveric, posted on 19 May.) Last week the music video for Toe Vind Ek Jou reached well over 500 000 views in little over a month. Francois believes that the success of this song lies in its openhearted honesty. With the release of Francois’ self-titled debut solo album he bravely embarked on a new journey and it’s paying off. According to the Kia Top40 SA with iTunes show Saturdays on 947 and KFM, Toe Vind Ek Jou is the first South African release to hit the Number 1 spot this year and the first Afrikaans Number 1. This show is based solely on the live Top 40 songs chart on the South Africa iTunes Store. A month after the release, the album and single was at the Number 2 position on the 8th of May and is still on the Top 10. This single and album still dominates radio charts across the country and the SA Top 20 top sellers chart, where the album has been on the Top 10 for four weeks.

The Francois van Coke Live Experience
Francois’ shows with his live band, Jedd Kossew (Van Coke Kartel) on lead guitar, Richard Onraet (Jesse Clegg) on rhythm guitar, Rudolph Willemse on bass and keyboard and Sheldon Yoko (Die Heuwels Fantasties) on drums, have been a raging success. The last album launch show at Ridgeback in Centurion recently burst out of its seams with a double over-capacity attendance.  Everybody wants to share a piece of the Francois van Coke live experience. Francois van Coke and his live band have been confirmed to play at Oppikoppi later this year.  Before then he is off to Amsterdam and then London for a couple of shows in June and will play some hot blooded rock ‘n roll shows with Karen Zoid in July. Francois will undertake a tour in October with his full band again. The first stop on Francois’ European trip, will be at one of the most popular alternative music venues and nightclubs in Amsterdam, Paradiso, on  13 June. While in Amsterdam, Francois will shoot his second music video, Behoort Aan Niemand Nie, with his long-time friend, Johan Nel, who is responsible for several of Fokofpolisiekar’s music videos. Three more music videos will be released before the end of this year. Francois and Jedd Kossew will play two shows in London. He will perform at Orange Bull on the 19th and at Zulu Bull on 20 June.

The shows everyone has been waiting for: Francois van Coke & Karen Zoid – Toe Vind Ek Jou
This winning combination will perform together at Artscape, Cape Town on 12 July and at the Atterbury Theatre on 23, 24 and 25 July. The Atterbury shows were sold-out in record time and Artscape tickets will go on sale from Computicket on the 1st of June.

Monday, 25 May 2015

TOUR! Pharrell Williams in South Africa for 2 dates only

Big Concerts in partnership with Woolworths are pleased to announce that Grammy award winning producer and performer PHARRELL WILLIAMS will perform 2 public concert dates in September 2015. Pharrell Williams is a creative force, using music, fashion, and design to express his distinctive style. From his beginnings as a teenage prodigy and multi-instrumentalist in Virginia Beach back in the early 90’s, through enough hits to earn him Billboard’s Producer of the Decade in 2010 with over 100 million copies of his productions sold worldwide. Williams has helped create such classics as Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky”, Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines”, Nelly’s “Hot in Herre”, Jay-Z’s “I Just Wanna Love U (Give It To Me)”, Britney Spears’s “I’m a Slave 4 U” and Justin Timberlake’s “Like I Love You”. Williams also worked with Chad Hugo and Shae Haley creating an unpredictable hybrid as part of the alt-rock/hip-hop group N.E.R.D with hits ‘She Wants to Move’ and ‘Rock Star’. Pharrell also received a 2014 Academy Award Nomination for his original song “Happy” featured in the animated film Despicable Me 2. “Happy” remained atop the Billboard Hot 100 chart for ten consecutive weeks, peaked #1 on iTunes in 103 markets worldwide, and was the lead single off of his album “G I R L”, his second solo album, released in March 2014, including smash hit singles “Marilyn Monroe”, “Come Get It Bae” and “Gust of Wind”. On the 9th of April 2015, Pharrell announced his collaboration with Woolworths on the “AreYouWithUs?” campaign, a creative partnership aimed at uplifting education and environmental sustainability in South Africa. The strategic collaboration is the first of its kind for a South African retailer, and will see the global superstar and the business align their values and actions to make a difference in the lives of people, and the planet. Williams takes on the role of Style Director in a ground-breaking collaboration across a series of sustainability-focused projects. The partnership is a strategic one, grounded in a strong set of shared values. “Pharrell is a global icon for social cohesion, advancement through education and environmental awareness – these same values lie at the heart of our business and form the foundation on which this partnership is built. We hope Pharrell will help us make sustainability cool for the next generation of South Africans and help us create a better future for our children, our country and our planet,” says CEO of Woolworths, Ian Moir. The Woolworths Good Business Journey is the driving force behind the partnership between Williams and Woolies. Launched in 2007, Woolies’ GBJ is a commitment to ethical trade, sustainable farming and production methods, as well as social responsibility. The call-to-action for the collaboration is “Are you with us?” and it asks customers to pledge their allegiance and support for the Woolworths Good Business Journey. See the Happy singer in Cape Town: Monday 21 September at Grand Arena, GrandWest and in Johannesburg: Thursday 24 September at Ticketpro Dome. Tickets for the public go on sale Friday 29th May at 9am. Tickets can only be purchased online through www.bigconcerts.com.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Tree63 announces album tour dates

Tree63 are proud to announce the dates for their South African ‘Land’ album launch tour. After a few reunion gigs last year in South Africa, Tree63 decided to pick up their instruments again and start the long and rewarding journey back to each other and their fans. After a successful Kickstarter campaign, the band has managed to raise enough funds to bring life to their brand new album ‘Land’. The album, which was recorded over the last few months in the US, has been delivered to Kickstarter backers, and will be officially released in June 2015 in South Africa. This is the first new music from Tree63 in over 8 years. ‘Land’ is an album about weathering the storms of life and faith and rising triumphant. The tour, in association with AMP'D is benefiting the Zambia Project. A percentage of the ticket sales will go to this project, which will assist in sinking wells in Zambia to get clean running water to people who don't have access to it


11 June @ 19h00: Hard Rock Cafe, Sandton - Media event- No Tickets Available.

12 June @ 19h00: LINC Church, Salt Rock, Durban

13 June @19h00: Father’s House Church. Port Elizabeth

15 June @ 19h00: Christian Family Church, Bonaero Park, Kempton Park

16 June @ 19h00: Choose Life Church, Pretoria

18 June @ 19h00: Crossroads Church Alberton

20 June @ 12h00: Prosound Studios in Roodepoort

Tickets available at iTickets.co.za and info@ampdent.co.za

Miguel confirms 29 June release date for 'Wildheart'!

Grammy Award winning recording artist Miguel has confirmed the official release date for his highly anticipated third studio album WILDHEART, out June 29th via Sony Music Entertainment. WILDHEART is the long awaited follow up to Miguel’s 2012 critically acclaimed release KALEIDOSCOPE DREAM, which spent 20 weeks on the Billboard 200 Album Chart. The album’s first single “Coffee” and its edgy, re-imagined alternate version, “Coffee (F***ing)” ft. Wale, were produced by Miguel and released earlier this month to critical praise and strong early radio support in South Africa. Miguel first hit the mainstream in 2010 with the infectious first single “All I Want Is You,” from his major label debut album of the same name, a song which blended a stark hip-hop beat with Miguel’s creamy vocals to form a sound that was absent from the radio and established Miguel as one of the most unique and soulful voices in modern R&B.  The album also features “Sure Thing,” which hit #1 on Billboard's Hip-Hop/R&B chart and second US #1 “Quickie.”  Miguel’s follow up was his critically-acclaimed, four-time Grammy Award nominated, sophomore album Kaleidoscope Dream, which features his third US #1 hit single “Adorn,” the intoxicating “How Many Drinks?,” “Do You…” and “The Thrill.”  In 2013 Miguel was nominated for a total of 5 Grammy Awards. Lead single “Adorn,” written and produced by Miguel, garnered Miguel his first Grammy Award for Best R&B Song and resided at #1 on the R&B/Hip-Hip Airplay chart for more than 23 weeks becoming the longest running #1 in the history of the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hip Airplay chart.

Monday, 18 May 2015

Ciara’s sixth full-length album in stores today

Ciara’s sixth full-length album, JACKIE, arrives in stores today. Hot on the heels of her self-titled 2013 chart-topper, Ciara, which debuted at #2 on the Billboard Top 200, brings the heat again over the course of Jackie’s 16 track Deluxe Edition.  Whether it’s the swagged-out intro “Jackie (B.M.F.)” or the bouncy banger “That’s How I’m Feelin’” [Feat. Pitbull & Missy Elliott], each song carries an effusive energy of its own. “Lullaby” shows another side of this dynamic performer, while the scorching first single “I Bet” continues gaining steam. The next single “Dance Like We’re Making Love” once again reaffirms her as “Queen of Dance,” with its sexy groove and infectious refrain emblematic of her range. Ciara attracted the talents of producers including Dr. Luke, Polow da Don, Harmony Samuels, The Underdogs (Damon Thomas & Harvey Mason, Jr.), and co-writers Rock City, Ester Dean and hit maker Diane Warren. Ciara joins the cast of NBC’s brand new variety show, I Can Do That, premiering Tuesday May 26. Alongside five other celeb competitors and host Marlon Wayans, she’ll showcase a new talent that she didn’t even realize she had and completing numerous inventive challenges.

Friday, 15 May 2015

Idols SA 2014 winner Vincent Bones release his debut CD

Vincent Bones, the 30 year-old worship leader from Pietermaritzburg and Idols SA 2014 winner released his debut album “Shaded Soul” today (15 May 2015). Randall Abrahams, MD for Universal Music SA says: “Vincent is one of the most talented artists in the country today and it was a great pleasure working with him. We are excited about releasing his album and know he will get a fantastic response from his dedicated fan base.” “The title of the album is significant as shading is a technique used in art to represent light and shade by varying the colour and intensity of the medium being used. In this case, every piece of music has been shaded with soul,” he continues. From street kid; to Boys Town resident; to Idols SA winner. Vincent’s journey was never easy. He struggled for years to be in the music industry. And then his Idols win catapulted him into the limelight. He was a crowd favourite from the beginning and with his tenacity and hunger to claim the coveted title he won the hearts of millions of voters in what was the biggest Idols season ever. Vincent’s first song “Let Me Love You” which was written especially for him during the Idols competition has been receiving good rotation on South Africa’s airwaves since December 2014 and his follow up single “My Lady” promises to have an even bigger impact. His fans will not be disappointed with the rest of the album which caters for a broad audience through its eclectic mix of House music, Ballads, Hip Hop, a bit of Afrosoul and elements of Rock – all of these bound by the common thread of being shaded with soul. “The album was inspired by my family who are my pillars of strength, and it’s dedicated to my late mother Dorah Bones. I wish she was here to see my dreams come true,” says Bones who describes his musical style as influenced by “old-school R&B and retro-soul”. “It was a great honour to work with some of the best artists, producers, and songwriters in the music business such as Ziyon, Kwesta, Reason, RJ Benjamin, Zubz, Jaziel Brothers, Thaso, Buks, and Ganja Beatz. I also collaborated with fellow newcomers Tresor and Zw(A)rt. This is my debut album but it is going to lay the foundation for many more to come; it marks the beginning of many great things in the future and I firmly believe it will succeed”, says Vincent. “Shaded Soul” is a diverse album that is both soulful and sentimental; with Vincent sharing stories through lyrical content that will relate to everyone who has fallen in love before. The music will leave you tapping your feet and melodies will be easy to remember.

An icon has fallen - BB King dies

A BB King Live Blu-Ray released 2009
The "King Of Blues" BB King has died. He was 89. The legend known for his hits Lucille, Sweet Black Angel and Rock Me Baby, died in his sleep in Las Vegas. Although he had continued to perform well into his 80s, the 15-time Grammy winner suffered from diabetes and had been in declining health during the past year. He collapsed during a concert in Chicago last October, later blaming dehydration and exhaustion. He had been in hospice care at his Las Vegas home after recently being hospitalised for high blood pressure and diabetes-related illness. BB King is remembered to fuse together both jazz and blues on his beloved guitar, a Gibson ES-344 he lovingly dubbed "Lucille". That sound hooked me to his music. Always when I listened to his music he transported me to an imaginary world blues lounge in New Orleans filled with cigar smoking people, ladies swinging back and forth, whisky drinking guys slowly tapping their feet and people clapping. He was a legend and an icon. Rest in peace BB.

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Valiant Swart The Mystic Boer rides again...

Nineteen years after Afrikaans rocker Valiant Swart's ground-breaking debut, "Die Mystic Boer" (Eng: The Mystic Boer) was released on CD it is now being released on vinyl, in association with Cape Town design agency (and friends of Valiant) Cow Africa. Fans can rediscover the iconic songs that first put the Boland punk on the map, including "Die Mystic Boer", "In Die Transvaal", "Ware Liefde" and "Buitenkant". The "Die Mystic Boer" vinyl package includes a high-quality vinyl record (180-gram, 33RPM), the classic album cover, as well as a full-colour inner sleeve with the lyrics and a collage of historical reviews and exclusive photos from the group's personal archives. Talk about collectors' delight! Says Valiant: "Since childhood I've dreamed of making a record. In 1990, when I started making music full-time, I thought it was just a matter of time before my debut would be released. Since 1985, however, CDs started replacing vinyl records as the preferred music format. In 1991 The Dolly Rockers, at that time the most popular alternative group in Cape Town, used up the last available vinyl in the Cape for their EP. There was literally no more stock of the required raw material to make vinyl records in the Cape! For a poor alternative Afrikaans rocker like me it was an unthinkable and impossible dream to make a CD. I had to wait another five years for my debut release - on CD. By that time, vinyl records had largely disappeared from the scene. The vinyl revolution of the last couple of years got me thinking that it would be quite special to do a limited edition of one of my albums on vinyl. Great was my surprise when Charles from Cow Africa phoned me one day to suggest that they assist me in realising this dream. I immediately agreed and today I finally have my debut album on vinyl - albeit twenty five years later!" The original album cover was carefully revised and updated by Cow Africa. The music itself was left intact; sound levels were only slightly adjusted for the vinyl format. According to Charles Miller from Cow Africa: "The rediscovery of vinyl is something all of us at Cow are quite passionate about and we have a couple of serious collectors in our ranks. One day we were discussing some of our favourite artists that should have been released on vinyl but never were and Valiant's name came up first. We knew what we had to do." This release of "Die Mystic Boer" brings Valiant Swart's music to the vinyl format for the very first time. Fitting then, that it's his debut album and just in time for its twenty-year anniversary in 2016. Only 500 of these limited edition collectors' pieces are available at R300 each.

Francois van Coke and Arno Carstens part of South Africa's first super group - Blood Brothers

South Africa - get read for history in the making for South Africa's first 'super group', Blood Brothers! Sony Max (DStv Channel 128) is the official media partner for the not-to-be-missed once-off concert Blood Brothers  – taking place on Saturday, 18 July at Carnival City – which sees history in the making as 10 South African musical legends get together to form the country’s first ever super group. In true super group style, each band member has been especially picked from a premiere crop of local rock legends. Together on one stage for one performance, they will perform three hours of the major hits that made them famous as well as songs from international bands that have influenced their sound. They are Arno Carstens (Springbok Nude Girls), Albert Frost (Blue Boers/Arno Carstens), Francois van Coke (Fokofpolisiekar), George van der Spuy (Taxi Violence/Good Night Wembley) and Kobus de Kock (Black Cat Bones) on vocals with Hunter Kennedy (Fokofpolisiekar/aKING/Die Heuwels Fantasties) and Rian Zietsman (Taxi Violence/Beast) on guitars; Loedi van Reenen (Taxi Violence) on bass and guitars and Jason Hinch (Black Cat Bones) and Isaac Klawinsky (Shadowclub) on drums. Never before have so many local legends agreed to partake in a venture of this magnitude for a good cause. Forty percent of the proceeds go to the charity initiative the Vrede Foundation which raises both funds and awareness in the fight against cancer, especially amongst young people. Says Sonja Underwood, Territory Director for Sony MAX: “Sony Max is delighted to be the official media sponsor for this cutting edge concert, as it not only talks to our audience but also reflects the channel aspirations.  Not only will Blood Brothers ensure an unforgettable rock legacy but it is a powerful platform to help in the ongoing battle against cancer.” Added Francois van Coke “ It’s really cool that Sony Max is partnering on this amazing show.  I’m a fan of the channel and just got to love it even more.” The Blood Brothers concert is produced by Vredevest to generate awareness amongst young South Africans aged 15-29 regarding cancer and to raise funds and provide financial aid to young South Africans with cancer who do not have medical aid.

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

FOKOFPOLISIEKAR: Delivering the Goods

The ever prolific FOKOFPOLISIEKAR are certainly delivering the goods this year.  The band successfully launched the Antibiotika India Pale Ale in March, but they are not stopping there. They are heading for New Zealand and will release the Hemel op die Platteland Amber Ale at the end of May. July will see the release of the Monoloog in Stereo EP vinyl. Fokofpolisiekar will release their third craft beer in a series of four on the 26th of May. Hemel op die Platteland Amber Ale, will be available to order from www.fpkbeer.co.za, along with Dagdronk Blonde Ale and Antibiotika India Pale Ale that are already on sale. Hemel Op Die Platteland Amber Ale is infused with Rooibos which makes for a unique and refreshing tasting experience. Beer lovers can look forward to the release of Skyn(Heilig) Weiss beer in September.

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

JACK PAROW Gets in touch with his Eastern Roots – LAST LAUGH Music Video

“One chilled autumn afternoon I had some time on my hands and started experimenting a bit and ended up with this version of Last Laugh. Through the creative journey and digging deep into our Eastern roots, we came out with the same truth as always: “F**k all the cool kids!” Last Laugh was originally released on my 2012 Gold selling record, ‘Eksie Ou’.  There is also a next-level acoustic version on ‘Nag Van Die Lang Pette’. Last Laugh tells the story of my teens and is a good introduction to my upcoming book ‘Die Ou Met Die Snor By Die Bar’ (Translation: The guy with the moustache at the bar) as told to Theunis Engelbrecht. The book will be available nation-wide from September 2015.”

They're back! Van Coke Kartel to record EP of cover songs

Not ones to let grass grow under their feet, VAN COKE KARTEL is back in studio to record a cover EP due for release on the 1 September this year. They are also working on an original song with Hip Hop producer pH, but more will be revealed in the following months. In the past, Van Coke Kartel has released four covers of songs that they like: Maniac, Skadu’s teen die Muur and I want Brandy (I want Candy)."The first time that we went the ‘cover route’ was in 2010 when we recorded Cocaine by JJ Cale, Maniac by Michael Sembello and Skadu’s Teen Die Muur by Koos Du Plessis.  All three of these tracks are on our Skop, Skiet & Donner album. In 2012 as part of a Ray-Ban ‘Legends Live’ campaign we were asked to cover I Want Candy by Bow Wow Wow. It ended up changed to I Want Brandy and got playlisted on 5FM. We still play it in our set today,’’ says bassist and band manager Wynand Myburgh. The band is excited to record some of their favourite songs. The long list was shortlisted to Thin Lizzy, Lana Del Ray, Johannes Kerkorrel, The Beatles and James Brown covers. "We don’t want to reveal too much at this stage, but it was not easy to settle on the five final song choices,"says lead guitarist Jedd Kossew. “I am a huge fan of Thin Lizzy and the song that we are covering from them is one of my all-time favourite songs. I want to play it to everyone I meet and now we will be recording it,’’ says frontman Francois van Coke. Van Coke Kartel has released 5 full length albums.  “We felt like it was time to do something less serious and have some fun. Without the stress of writing new material we are just going to meet up, jam and enjoy the process," says Wynand. The EP will be recorded over a period of time with super producer Theo Crous at Bellville Studios.