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Saturday, 01 June 2019

Simon Van Gend Band i McGregor

Montagu Events - Simon Van Gend Band i McGregor
at the courtyard presents Simon Van Gend Band
1 June
18:30 – 21:30
R220 per person, including supper
pin at the courtyard
44 Voortrekker Street, 6708 McGregor, Western Cape

For more info message Meg: 082 445 2145

The most common comparisons offered in amongst the crowds following a Simon van Gend gig seem to be some vague vocal reference to Cat Stevens or the less knowledgeable stab-in-the-dark of Jack Johnson, like the guy invented the acoustic music genre and you fall under him by default. The music does evoke a similar sense of nostalgia; the introspective lyrics and melancholic indie folk-rock leanings from the acoustic guitar of this singer-songwriter do strike a chord not far from the same heart, but this band is from South Africa. The words are from these shores.

Simon’s second album ‘Pocketsongs’ is a Cape Town album with loads of great melodies, harmonies and choice rhythms. It’s a walk around the head and heart of an artist who has spent the last 10 years perfecting his trade, gradually building a name for himself in and around the Mother City as a songwriter and performer. The band, with Simon on vocals & acoustic guitar, features Eric Michot on bass and Ross Campbell on drums.

The album was recorded at Simon's home, in front of a fire, the lounge and dining room filled with recording gear and instruments. For three rainy months the band and producer David Maclean worked, laughed, ate and recorded a warm, soulful album, bringing in guest artists such as Zolani Mahola (Freshlyground), Inge Beckman (Lark), Tony Cox and Alex van Heerden, to add textures and diversity to the sound.

Their 3rd album, Guest of my Feelings was recorded by Joe Arthur, whose credits include both recent Freshlyground albums, Tony Cox and Watershed (all SAMA winners in their respective categories). The album also features the thigh-slapping mandolin of Brendon Bussy and the beautifully subtle piano of Chris Letcher, who also adds backing vocals and a host of other obscure instruments to the mix.

The band has recently finished recording their 4th album, this time with the backing of the Dubai-based Jump Media, due to be released internationally in the second half of 2011. The album was produced by acclaimed Australian producer Ian Pritchett, famed for his work with Angus & Julia Stone and The Beautiful Girls.
Simon has a degree in microbiology, doesn't do religion, but talks about the i ching with a certain amount of enthusiasm. A typesetter by day and songwriter between 3 and 4am, Simon likes to get to the bottom of the things that keep him awake at night.

Eric is a French pastry chef for a top notch hotel out Betty's Bay way and makes the best croissants. No one in the audience understands the things he says, but it doesn't seem to matter. He is an optimist and a bit of a charmer.
Ross is a cynic and father of two. He runs a small record company which doesn't sell very many beautifully obscure albums. He's also played drums for Benguela, Fetish, Urban Creep, Landscape Prayers and even Celtic Rumours back in the 80's.

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