Close Top Afrikaans group heads for East Cape

The members of Van Coke Kartel (from left) drummer Justin Kruger, singer Francois van Coke and bassist Wynand Myburgh will be in action in Uitenhage, Port Elizabeth and Jeffreys Bay in the coming week.LEADING Afrikaans rock band Van Coke Kartel hits the Eastern Cape next week with a series of very different gigs around the province.

The group, which has just released its new album Waaksaam en Wakker containing the hit Wat Het Van Ons Geword, consists of Francois van Coke on guitar and vocals, Wynand Myburgh on bass and Justin Kruger on drums.

The group is one of several acts to emerge from the popular punk rock act Fokofpolisiekar – Myburgh and Van Coke were both founding members and Kruger toured with the band but didn‘t record with them.

Myburgh said that there was no animosity or issues between the bands which often liked to play together.

“At the moment there‘s Van Coke Kartel and some members are involved in aKing and some other members are involved in Die Heuwels Fantasties,” Myburgh said.

“And then our guitarist from Fokofpolisiekar is also involved in Jax Panik.

“So it‘s pretty much like a family of bands all hanging out and all with the same sort of mindset around music.”

He said Van Coke Kartel and aKing often played together, and would be doing so again on July 10 at Pool City, Walmer. That show will be a full rock show and will also feature up-and-coming Port Elizabeth band The Merchant of Menace. But before getting to Port Elizabeth, Van Coke Kartel will first appear at the Barkly Street Theatre in Uitenhage on July 8.

“We started rehearsing an acoustic show in February this year,” Myburgh said.

“It was something we always wanted to do.”

He said with a limited number of rock venues, it gave the band more opportunity to get on the road and visit smaller towns which might not be able to stage a rock gig. Then after the Uitenhage and Port Elizabeth shows, the group heads off to the Bilabong Pro surfing festival in Jeffreys Bay on July 11. Myburgh said with this being an outdoor venue and a festival vibe, that once again the feel and set list would change from the other two shows. Looking back at the rise of the group, Myburgh said he started playing bass guitar at the age of 16 and formed a band with Van Coke at high school.

“Our careers started together and we initially played in a Christian band called 7th Breed, which became quite popular in Cape Town,” he said.

But Myburgh‘s path to stardom wasn‘t straight forward. He got involved in the music industry, particularly in sound engineering and worked for a while in television broadcasting for e.tv.

“I eventually decided on music as a full-time thing when we formed Fokofpolisiekar in 2003,” he said.

Asked about what he does when not performing in the two bands, Myburgh said that music had become a full-time 24 hour job.

“Even when we‘re not playing live, we‘re rehearsing, writing, recording, doing interviews, working on the business side of the band, producing flyers, organising bookings or other logistical elements.

“Even when you go out for the evening to relax, you still find that you are ‘working‘ because you‘ll meet someone who recognises you and end up posing for photos and signing autographs.”

source: Weekend Post

Female performers show just how it is done

The cast of Divas Are Forever (from left) Lynn Cosme, Thuba Mayeki, Donna Africa and Robynn King will be in action in Uitenhage this week and Port Elizabeth next week.FOR the first time, Centrestage presents a two-night run of one of its shows, Divas Are Forever, at the Barkly Street Theatre in Uitenhage on Thursday and Friday – before the show moves to Uptown Theatres in Port Elizabeth for performances from June 15 to 20.

Divas are Forever showcases some of the most scintillating live performances and song arrangements sung by female performers whose popularity has endured over time. The show features Donna Africa as show host Shirley Bassey.

She is joined by the big voiced Robynn King, who pays tribute to Aretha Franklin Barbra Streisand, Etta James and Whitney Houston, while Lynn Cosme is introduced as the newest addition to the Centrestage fold as Liza Minelli, Bette Midler and Shania Twain.

Joining the ladies on duets through-out is another Centrestage newcomer Thuba Mayeki, who become known to Eastern Cape fans through his Top 14 appearance on this years Idols singing competition.

Aside from Bassey‘s Diamonds Are Forever, Never Never , This is My Life and her rendition of Hey Jude, Africa also performs other big numbers such as the Jennifer Holiday classic And I‘m Telling You I‘m Not Going and Gladys Knight‘s emotional interpretation of Free Again/I Will Survive. She also strides out as Tina Turner.

Mayeki joins Africa on You Can‘t Take That Away from Me, and performs the Elton John role in the Shania Twain/Elton John duet versions of You‘re Still the One and Something About the Way You Look Tonight.

Tickets in Uitenhage can be bought from the theatre and in Port Elizabeth through Computicket. They cost R95 and shows start at 7.30pm.

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source: The Herald, Arts Correspondent