And so it is that we set off to one of the first Park Acoustics for the year 2018. It’s a biggie for us, as much as it is for Jeremy Loops. It’s the first time both of us have been back to the Purple City in a while. We first saw a solo Jeremy Loops about four years ago, at a tiny Park Acoustics up at Fort Schanskop. We remember squealing with glee because he sounded like an entire gypsy band. Fast forward four years and he now has an entire band of gypsies on stage with him.
As much as this event was to mark his new album launch (11 March), the day was not just about him, but also about the amazing line up that opened for him.
First on the bill, bright and early at 11am was Adelle Nqeto. We first met this pint-sized lady a few years ago as one half of Flint Meets Spark, and have loved her soulful voice and melodies since then. Her set was amazing and she did not disappoint, it was quite wonderful to see so many people in front of the stage glowing in her music. Her EP is out right now, and yes, you do need it!
The next two bands were all about hearing new music, and falling in love with it instantly.
Bam Bam Brown flew onto stage, yelled at the crowd and got them up and moving and LIVING. We stood in awe of this bare footed rabble rouse who was just amazing. A little the Boo / Chris Chameloen of old, but also just alot like himself! He kept yelling cool things at the crowd like “It’s ok to move your hips, it’s ok to smile. It’s ok to be alive!”
If you’ve been living under a rock and not heard of them before, get to it and go Google the hell out of this band. Kieran Brown was once the lead singer of Saint Fearless and Feverstone, and this has been his solo project for close on two years now. They did an amazing rendition of Somewhere over the Rainbow and it was the perfect way to end off the set. We also had the opportunity to meet him later after the show, and all we can say is that he truly has a pure soul! What you hear is what you get.
Native Young were up next, we smiled as I noticed that they too perform barefoot. Reminding us a Psychedelic Beatles group, both in sound and in attire. Also hailing from Cape Town, these gents are the heart and soul of busking. And you can see it and hear it in their stage performance. They are the proud owners of a SAMA Award (Best Alternative Album, 2017). And listening to them perform and infuse traditional sounds with modern day sounds, we can see how they earned it.
Tresnor was up next. After having first had the pleasure of seeing him at a Mark’s Park festival a few years back, we have been fans. Today he was up on stage, not only with a band, but also wearing a Nirvana t-shirt. It was a bit sad not to see him in traditional wear, mainly because his band was, but the clothes do not a man make (his music does). And Nirvana was a damn fine choice if you’re going to break tradition. 😉.
We shed a few tears as they paid tribute to the late Hugh Masekela with the song Still Grazing. I could not think of a better line up to open for Jeremy Loops.
The MC for the day was someone we have come to love at the Park Acoustic gigs – King Nqoba. He held the crowd in the palm of his hand…. and not only because he was throwing out limited edition Jeremy Loops Pringles 😉 but because he is a fantastic MC and human.
While Jeremy Loops was back stage, doing stretches and centering himself with some yoga breathing, King Nqoba had the crowd chanting his name “Jeremy Loops, Jeremy Loops Jeremy Loops…”
And just like that, it’s 3.30pm and it is the third day since his album Critical as Water. He starts his tour here in South Africa before he heads out to promote it globally. The crowd was massive, 4500 people in total. Thank you PA for securing the bigger venue. Loops did not disappoint his fans. He played the old and the new, making sure that even if you haven’t been hyped up by the new singles or the new album, you could totally still enjoy his performance.
It’s been a while since we have seen him perform, and still getting used to the BIG new band, minus the fantastic Jamie Faull. But the BIG band does not disappoint, and Jeremy does what he does best, entertain a crowd and gets them singing along.
All in all, it was a magnificent day spent with friends, in the company of great artists. Live music is still the best music and the best way to end (or start) a week.
Big up to Park Acoustics for the bigger venue, the clean toilets and short bar queues.