All Night Radio at The Concert In The Park, 37 Years Ago Today!

Concert held at Ellis Park Stadium, Johannesburg on the 12th January 1985 in aid of Operation Hunger.

When we got to Ellis Park that afternoon the stadium was heaving with 110 000 South African music fans packed in across the turf, throughout the stadium and up on the roof!

Juluka and Johnny Clegg held that crowd in the palm of their hands, and then the whole place erupted in joy when Lucky Dube came on. He channelled  the love running through everyone that night.

”I love this man”, I heard someone scream, as the place rocked to the deep pulse of rhythm and sound, bonding 110 000 people as one.

Steve Louw, December 2021
All Night Radio (left-to-right): Steve Louw, Rob Nagel, Richard “Dish” Devey, Nico Burger
All Night Radio (left-to-right): Steve Louw, Rob Nagel, Richard “Dish” Devey, Nico Burger

Searching For Sugar Man

Searching For Sugar Man trailers

We have just watched your documentary and think there should be more people like you in the world who share the wealth of their love as well as in other ways too. You have been an incredible father to your daughters who seem in awe of you and grateful for the life you provided for them. Your music is so poetic and beautiful and we would love to hear you in one final tour, or maybe a live performance recorded in Detroit?

Sending love and so much gratitude for you in the world.

Anz and Teed xxxxxxx
Bristol, UK

Message for Rodriguez

Dear Sixto, since years I love your music. Until 2011 I have been the artistic director of a main German festival: JazzBaltica. I tried so often to get in touch and to invite you – it never worked. I am as old as you and now I live in Berlin – still hearing and loving your art. I am writing this today, because I have seen again the film “Searching for Sugar Man”, and this touched me deeply again. You are wonderful, my dream did not come true to meet you once but your music stays a main part of my live.

Love

Rainer Haarmann

Capital Radio 604 Hall Of Fame 2021

Capital Radio 604 Hall Of Fame 2021

The Hall of Fame will be broadcast on our stream from 8am – 6pm on Boxing day  It will include voices from the old DJs (including Smith, Simons, Crozier, Newman, Prior, Kahn, Scott, Blewitt and Oxley)  and jingles and the 150 top songs voted by the 604 fans. To listen click on  https://www.capital604.com/live

The Facebook Group can be found on https://www.facebook.com/groups/Capital604/

Greetings from Poland

Dear Sixto Diaz Rodriguez,

I hope you’re staying in good health.

I learned about you from my man (Juan from Spain), who is always emotional about your story, and of course, he loves your music. I also enjoy listening to your songs because the lyrics are deep, and the melody is pleasant. I’m happy that your history is known and you can perform for your beloved audience.

I want to give a gift to my man on his birthday, and I thought that your autograph would be unique. So, therefore, please let me know how I can receive it.

Also, we would be honored to attend your live concert, but I can’t find any of them on your calendar, so I would appreciate such information as well.

Thank You!

Elizabeth from Poland

Sugar Man – Just Jinger

1001 South African Songs You Must Hear Before You Go Deaf

by John Samson

Greatest Hits - Just Jinger
Greatest Hits – Just Jinger

When Rodriguez walked out onto the stage in Cape Town back in 1998 to kick off his first ever SA tour, he thanked the audience for keeping him alive. And a large part of that thanks could have been directed towards Ard Mathews and Just Jinger as their cover version of the Rodriguez classic, ‘Sugarman’, was probably as important in bringing the Detroit musician to a new generation of fans as the army call up was to his first South African fans.

‘Cold Fact’, the Rodriguez album that contained ‘Sugarman’ had been around since the late 60’s early 70’s and seemed to live in the air we breathed back then. Nearly every white South African home had a copy of the album and everyone knew the song. It seemed only natural then for someone to cover it, but strangely it had to wait till the 90’s before Just Jinger plucked up the courage to take on such a revered song. And they did the right thing with their cover as it is as straight forward a cover of an original as one could get. Just about the only difference between the original and the JJ’s version is Ard’s grungey vocals compared to Rodriguez’s folky ones.

So what, you may ask, is the point of producing a cover that is pretty much the same as the original? Well, I think that the fact that Just Jinger didn’t deviate too far from the original shows their huge respect for the song and the singer as they didn’t want to mess too much with the original, seeing it as perfection in itself, so they could only imitate and not add to it. The second reason that this was an important cover was laid out in the first paragraph of this article. Just Jinger were becoming one of the biggest bands in the land and the fact that they tipped their hat to this classic song had their younger fans digging out their moms and dads CDs to check out the original.

At the time Just Jinger covered this track, there was hardly another cover of the track, let alone a cover of any other Rodriguez tracks out there (there were some and a list of pre-‘Searching For Sugar Man’ covers can be found here: http://sugarman.org/coverversions.html). Just Jinger with their excellent and timely cover of the track helped keep Rodriguez alive and well and they did so reverentially, letting the song take the limelight. This would have to go down as one of the greatest covers of an international track by an SA band.

Where to find it:
Something For Now (1998)
Greatest Hits (2001)

Video:

Mixcloud:

 
The South African Rock Encyclopedia:

Just Jinger

The Hidden Years Of South African Music

The Institut français (Paris), the French Embassy in South Africa and IFAS-Research are pleased to present the Hidden Years Music Archive Project, which is hosted by the Africa Open Institute for Music, Research and Innovation (Faculty of Art and Social Sciences, Stellenbosch University). This documentary is part of a project initiated and supported by the Institut français (Paris), the French Institute of South Africa and IFAS-Research, called “Sounds of Southern Africa”.

Mixtape Hope

mixtapehope.buzzsprout.com

I am writing to firstly say “thank you” to Mr. Rodriguez for sharing his story with the world.
My husband and I watched the documentary “Searching for Sugarman”. One of the most striking undercurrents of the film was the strength in spirit emanating from the music. Real stories set to music.

My husband and I began a podcast to share such stories behind lyrics and music.
“Mixtape Hope” has gained momentum as we (both physicians) share with our listeners the power, purpose, beauty and healing that music holds.

In a world where many people feel that healing must come from medicine or walking through this life numbed, we want to shed light on the human creative spirit…just as we felt in watching the documentary.

We would love the opportunity to interview Mr. Rodriguez.

Please check us out and thank you for taking the time to read this.

mixtapehope.buzzsprout.com

Drs. Andrea and Luis Espinoza

Turn it Down: A look back at that time Sixto Rodriguez dissed the MC5 | City Pulse

Detroit street-poet folky appeared in the ‘60s then disappeared

From City Pulse

 

Sixto Rodriguez, shown here in 1969, is now 78 and lived through decades of musical obscurity.
Sixto Rodriguez, shown here in 1969, is now 78 and lived through decades of musical obscurity. COURTESY: Rich Tupica

In a 1969 interview, Mexican-American singer-songwriter Sixto Rodriguez had some harsh words for some of his fellow Michigan musicians. “I don’t have much respect for the MC5 because they stopped fighting the machine,” he casually told the Detroit Free Press.

While today both parties are known for their own revolutionary sonic missions, it’s no wonder why Rodriguez felt lukewarm about the hard-partying and grandstanding MC5. The modest Rodriguez lived the life he sang about. He was, and still is, a true underdog — a disconnected outsider who sings songs for other outcasts.

“I grew up in an orphanage and I’m grateful to the sisters of the Roman Catholic corporation for all they gave me and instilling that higher motivation thing,” he said in the same 1969 interview. “But that doesn’t work on the street, you know?”

And he knew all about the streets. During his 1950s youth, it served as his makeshift education. Though he never attended high school, he took part in the University of Michigan’s mature student program in the late ’60s. He fought for his education. “Street life teaches you a lot,” he said at the time. “At school, they’re just giving me different names for the things already in my head. … I function out of the reality of things around me.”

And that reality is cemented on his two now-legendary albums: 1970’s “Cold Fact” and 1971’s “Coming from Reality.” Billed simply under the name Rodriguez, the now-cherished records flopped here in the United States, causing the songwriter to sink deeper into the underground and step away from the stage. For years, his small but loyal fanbase didn’t know if he was dead or alive. Info on him was scarce. His followers were limited to reading tidbits written in his LP liner notes and clues he peppered into his poignant storytelling song lyrics.

However, on the other side of the globe, his two loner-folk LPs were secretly bootlegged and released in the Apartheid-era South Africa. Because it was pre-Internet, Rodriguez didn’t even hear about his South African success until years later. There, he was a mysterious celebrity, but here in the U.S. he was living hand to mouth in inner-city Detroit.

So what sound was it that captivated a far-away country to worship an unknown Motor City folky? A 27-year old Rodriguez explained it best. “Some people say I’m a folk singer because most of my stuff is soft with an acoustic guitar and all that,” the prophetic songwriter said. “But on my album, there are some very Motown-ish things. The division they talk of in music really isn’t there. … Later on, they’ll integrate music on the stations. There’ll be no ‘This is ours and that is theirs.’ It’s all music. It’s the universal thing.”

After years of obscurity, after a slowly swelling grassroots cult following grew, Rodriguez finally got his due. He began touring the world, sharing stages with the likes of Brian Wilson. During the last decade, he’s gone from scraping by, to earning an easy living thanks to his poetic songbook.

In 2012, his life was artfully documented in the “Searching for Sugar Man” film (“Sugar Man” being one of his most notable tracks). That year, it won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. Not a bad feather in the cap for most, but the elusive Rodriguez was nowhere to be found at the ceremony. He later humbly admitted he didn’t want to steal attention from the filmmakers, among a few other reasons.    

“We also just came back from South Africa and I was tired,” the forever-enigmatic Rodriguez told Rolling Stone at the time. “I was asleep when it won, but my daughter Sandra called to tell me. I don’t have TV service anyway.”

Train Don’t Run – New Video from Steve Louw

Steve Louw and his band Big Sky appeared with Rodriguez on the sold-out South African tour in 1998 as featured in the Oscar-winning film “Searching For Sugar Man“.

Here is the official video for “Train Don’t Run”, created by Jacqui van Staden. From the album “Headlight Dreams“, produced by Kevin Shirley and released 7 May 2021.

… my favourite track on this album is the almost proggish “Train Don’t Run”. Clocking in at seven and half minutes this is an epic tune that you hope never finishes. There is a soaring guitar solo by Rob McNelley that David Gilmour fans will love. No surprise to discover that this track was mixed on the same console as the classic “Dark Side Of The Moon“.

Brian Currin
Headlight Dreams review on AllMusic.com

Stream/download “Headlight Dreams”

https://orcd.co/SteveLouwHeadlightDreams

STEVE LOUW ONLINE

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THE STORY BEHIND THE SONG

My grandfather was a railroadman and in the 1930s my father rode trains looking for work. To me, trains symbolise our attempts to bend nature to our will – and we’re seeing that trying to do that will never work. Silence will always return to the plains, the wind will blow, tracks will crumble and the earth will breathe again. This song has the wide open plains in it; dry cracked earth and a broken land.

The song builds from a driving acoustic guitar and hypnotic bassline to a haunting guitar solo by Rob McNeeley. The production (by Kevin Shirley) brings out the relentlessness of the song and of what we inflict on our planet.

Steve Louw

TRAIN DON’T RUN
(Recorded February 27, 2020)

The wind blows across empty plains
That hold so many bones
The rails glow years since the rain
Horses roam on broken stones
Train don’t run round here no more
Train is gone for us all

Put down a coin on the track
Saw silver turn through black
Seeds thrown all come back
Haunt the earth broken and cracked
Train don’t run round here no more
Train won’t come for us all

I can help you cross if you’ll let me
Spirits roam across this broken land
What’s been lost you can see
Count the cost can’t understand
Train don’t run round here no more
Train is gone for us all



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