Thursday, 28 July 2011
The Blues Broers – Saronsberg Theatre, Tulbagh
You don't prepare yourself mentally for a Blues Broers show. You cannot if you haven't
experienced them before. No matter what you hear beforehand or expect to find - please
do yourself a favor and throw all of that out of the window. Put on your dancing shoes
and let these guys entertain you with passion. I was semi prepared when I went to the
show, since I saw Albert Frost and Arno Carstens rocking
it out at an open air show at Saronsberg Wine Cellar (which left me breathless by the
way) so I had a small idea of what was in store.
Arriving 10 minutes too early, Maggie (their manager) greeted me at the door. Warm
hearted and strong willed, I immediately felt at home.
I couldn't imagine a better agent for the band. Ready with stories, passionate and so
easy to talk to she is the great introduction to The Blues Broers - if you ever do see her
at a show, be sure to make an effort to chat to her. She'll make it worth your while. I
The Blues Broers has been breaking boundaries since 1989 introducing sounds not
common in South Africa at the time. While they took a break for awhile, concentrating
on solo careers, they have been back on the scene for almost 2 years now and they are
better than ever. They are bigger than before and equipped with music that will transcend
If I say "breaking boundaries" I mean it to the extent that even before they appeared on
stage, there was this strange boxed instrument I have never seen before in my life,
I was excited to see what they were going to do with it. Later I found out this instrument
is called a "tea chest bass". Originating from the days when ship farers transported teas in
these wooden chest, they attached string to the core, made some sounds and sang for their
own entertainment. Now The Blues Broers do it for ours.
Plus point for us. You have to experience this primitive instrument. Pure genius I assure.
I’ll also add that there was an old washboard used, brilliantly by Tim Rankin himself.
Lights are dimmed, Albert is on lead guitar and vocals, Rob Nagel takes his place at
the "tea chest", Tim Rankin seated in front of drums and of course Simon Orange on
keyboard. Action. You are lost for the time they play their jam.
From the moment these men created sound with their instruments, I was totally lost in
their music, professionalism and pure passion of sharing with us the audience, this very
moment. I haven’t seen musical talent on this scale in a very long time. During the 2
hours performance, I couldn’t stop taking pictures and tapping my feet to the sultry tunes,
the incredible mixture of style and completely being lost in the impressive presence these
men have on stage.
My words cannot describe what these men have to offer. All I can say is join their
facebook group – The Blues Broers and diligently follow their gig list. Attend one as
soon as you can. I promise you won’t be disappointed. If you are, feel free to tell me I am wrong.