Wednesday, November 26, 2014


Although you may immediately leap to a point which intersects Perry Farrell's anthemic chorus and mild internet outrage, don't beat yourself up. It's my way of getting people to click on provocative headlines so that I can continue to refuse to get paid for the messages of hope, love, peace, understanding, tolerance, boobs, beer, DOOM metal and the occasional rant when it all gets a bit much. But is it? Perhaps I am subtly alluding to a deeper ill in our society...

You have to be THIS tall to be allowed on this ride.

Please disregard all of the above as a clumsy introduction to the latest SONGS WE MADE FAMOUS - ICONIC WOMEN OF THE NINETIES. Another night of wonderful performances by the variety show that comprises Anton Marshall's group of friends. And one which celebrated the impact women have had on the music and the memories of our (not so much) youth, as we navigated our way through torn jeans, ratty jerseys, scuffed Docs and poppers in the smoke machine of whichever shit hole we found ourselves immersed in the aural aura of it all. You know, because it's 16 days of activism against woman and child abuse. And Woman's Month. Or something. How is it not just a continuous conscience? I digress...

Yup, he went and did it again! 2 sets of superbly chosen songs performed by Cape Town's choicest female vocalists. And a bloke. The show kicked off with Mr Daniel Fernandes, an interesting take on femininity, but starting with the plaintive strains of Tracy Chapman, very quickly stamped his musical authority all over everything. An accomplished guitarist and a captivating voice brought new life to great songs that have most certainly laid down a lot of tread over the years.
Following him, the diminutive hippie punk Cami Scoundrel proved (again) that dynamite comes in small packages as she - on tip toes - walloped the audience with a rousing rendition of Meredith Brooks's 'Bitch'. (I was still singing it to myself after I got home.)
Thereafter, the walking talking (trust me on the talking part) embodiment of the typical angelic voice, Rose Thorn strode out to the mic. After a brief introduction that wouldn't be out of place in the beginning of a rom-com about a shy girl overcoming her stage fright, she treated us to a truly special experience as she belted out 3 Cranberries classics with all the aplomb of a seasoned band leader. The truth is that I have been keeping her largely to myself as an integral part of my doom metal band. For now, you may refer to us simply as The World's Best Kept Secret. Let's just say I could not, for love or money, wipe the grin from my face throughout.

I'm not going to go into too many specifics, and detail the evening on a song by song basis, as I feel that the spirit of the evening was more of a complete experience, which also included awesome performances by Thomene Dilley, Amy-Lou Dickinson and the fantastically feminine voice of Anton Marshall, who did Suzanne Vega more than justice. I am, however, going to single out another two performers for special mention. Shannon Devy has the voice and the charisma of a goddess! Fuck me! Talk about being blown away... She did Brian Molko better than Brian Molko could ever hope to. Don't even get me started on the set closer - 4 Non Blondes epic classic 'What's Up?' - it raised the fucking roof! That was one of the best vocal performances I have had the pleasure of watching, hearing and feeling. Someone next to me had the decency to lift my jaw back up and go buy me a beer.
But the evening belonged to one Marisa Salvarto, who had never sung in front on an audience before, never mind in the hallowed arena that is Mercury. I don't know if it was the nerves, or the relief at pulling off such a stellar performance, but congratulations! You will never ever forget this special night - and neither will anyone who was lucky enough to be there - you NAILED it!

Speaking of nailing it, once again kudos to the house band. Stuart, David, Damian and the man himself, Anton - well done on another flawless job. I sincerely hope these evenings become the institution that they are planned to become. I will be at every one of them. (Do not go there... we are NOT talking about the ALTERNATIVE EIGHTIES night.)

Bravo to all of you! And for the sake of full disclosure, here is the list of iconic women and bands that were so brilliantly honoured last night:
Tracy Chapman
The Beautiful South
Sheryl Crow
Meredith Brooks
The Cranberries
No Doubt
Suzanne Vega
Alanis Morissette
Joan Osborne
Placebo (cheeky)
4 Non Blondes

NGDG: I support President Zuma for a second term. Only this time it should be 25 to life.

Spread The Love. "I Pray Every Single Day For A Revolution"

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