The free V&A Mercedes Benz Summer Sessions at the Amphitheatre in Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront are due to start during November.
On Sunday, 2 November the V&A will rock with a bumper evening of free live music. Between 6pm and 7pm the electro-swing dance band GoodLuck will get the crowd dancing with jazzy melodies such as Hop On Hop Off, Harlem and Taking It Easy. The show coincides with the official welcome of the Volvo Ocean Race team so, after the show head down to the Volvo Ocean Race Village in front of Quay 6 for further free live performances until 9pm.
For high-energy dance beats it doesn’t get better than Tucan Tucan, performing on Saturday, 8 November between 6pm and 7pm. Argentinian vocalist and pianist Muriel Marco brings Latin American flair and beat to the African rhythm of Mozambican vocalist and drummer Frank Paco and South African guitarist Angelo Syster, tenor, soprano, saxophonist and flutist Buddy Wells, vocalists Lana Crowster and Lee-Ann Fortuin, and bass guitarist Andre Webb.
Songstress Natasha Meister will wow the crowdson Sunday, 16 November between 6pm and 7pm. The Canada-born, award-winning singer and songwriter has built up a loyal fan base, becoming the only woman in Africa to be endorsed by both American Fender and German Lakewood guitar makers. Although she hails from a ‘blues-country-soul’ background, Meister’s newly launched EP ‘What Goes Around’ takes a new pop-rock direction. She lists the Foo Fighters, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Paramore as having a significant influence in her decision to switch from blues to rock, which she sees as just a heavier and edgier version of the blues.
Mini Folk Fest
You can get into the summer groove on Sunday, 30 November with the Mercedes Benz V&A Mini Folk Fest as an extension of the Summer Sessions. From 2.30pm through to 7.30pm visitors will be entertained with non-stop free live music at the V&A Amphitheatre.
First up between 2.30pm and 3pm is Roxy, bringing fresh young talent to the Amphitheatre. At 16 she is already a YouTube sensation and has even had her song played on local radio. Roxy will be followed by Jono Grayson between 3.10pm and 3.30pm. The 21-year-old singer and songwriter hails from Pietermaritzburg and recently relocated to Cape Town to pursue his musical career. The talented young musician currently has four singles playlisted on popular local radio stations and is currently working on an album with Neil Breytenbach of Prime Circle.
Between 3.40pm and 4pm, folk musician Jennifer Eaves takes to the stage. With a degree in music from UCT majoring in voice and piano, she has quietly built a solid reputation for crafting meaningful folk songs with strong messages. Eaves is also a skilled guitarist and pianist with a souring vocal range.
Next on the bill between 4.10pm and 4.30pm it’s Fruit Vendor. This melodic, alternative hip-hop folk artist from Stellenbosch is as fresh and unusual as his name. The audience can expect catchy sing-along songs, penetrating lyrics and rap vocals. Fruit Vendor has played at many major local music festivals and has shared a stage with the likes of Die Antwoord, Prime Circle, Karen Zoid, aKing and many more.
Rounding off the afternoon between 4.45pm and 5.15pm it’s the turn of Hatchetman, a dynamic trio consisting of Jono Tait, Matt and Nick Catto. The trio conjures ‘otherworldly’ harmonies. With no lead vocalist, the trio sing in seamless harmonies that have been described as being reminiscent of Crosby, Stills and Nash. The band points to Neil Young, CSN, The Beatles, Sting and the Red Hot Chili Peppers as being an influence on their music.
Mark Fransman will take the audience into the early evening between 5.30pm and 6pm. The multi-award-winning artist has performed at festivals such as the Euro De Afrique Festival in Italy and at the North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague, Holland. Locally, he has performed at the Jazz Festival five times as the leader of his own band Strait and Narrow. This accomplished musician has performed with names such as Jimmy Dludlu, Zim Nqwana, Musa Manzini, Gloria Bosman, Marcus Wyatt and Errol Dyers to name a few. He will perform music from his newly released folk/rock album ‘Sounds of Life’.
The penultimate show of the evening will be the David Meulen Trio between 6.15pm and 6.45pm. Singer and songwriter David Meulen started his music career fronting for alternative rock band Dividable Grand. The band received extensive airplay for their album ‘The Buzz’, and performed alongside many top South African artists such as Prime Circle, aKing and Taxi Violence. Meulen has now embarked on a solo career and his debut album entitled ‘@davidmeulen’ was released in April 2014.
Rounding off the Mini Folk Fest will be TouchWood between 7pm and 7.30pm. One of Cape Town’s fresh new sounds, the band’s gypsy-folk music is produced by guitar, ukulele, violin, cello, African marimba, vocal harmonies and drums. Their musical influences include old folk musicians such as Neil Young and Janis Joplin, combined with new contemporary sounds to add a fresh, upbeat experience to their music. They recently released their first EP entitled ‘Land in the Sun, and have just returned from their first, successful European tour.