Entertainment, Healing, Live Music, Music

Music

 

 

Along the way we met some truly gifted musicians, we encountered the Baha’i Youth on the beach singing:

Fear not abasement, be not sad if poverty overtake thee, for Glory shall one day rest on thee… These fruitless strifes and wars will pass a away and the most great peace shall come, so shall it be”

Dominique Sylvester singing about inner peace:

When a thought of war comes, oppose it by a stronger thought of peace, a thought of hatred must be destroyed by a more powerful thought of love!”

Hailey Fudu sings:

Oh son of Being, thy heart is my home. Sanctify it for my descent. Thy spirit my place of revelation, cleanse it for my manifestation… thy heart is my home.”

Then an instrumental piece by Lukasz Staszak in the Drakensburg mountains, followed by the lovely Dani Nieuwoudt who advises us to:

Stop trying, stop meaning to try, just be… oooh so many things that you could do, it’s true, don’t you realise how beautiful you are just being you!”

Then an unforgettable concert, Matthew Mole singing:

Take away this fear and I’ll turn it into something I can use, and if I’m clear then you’re never gonna bring me down again, never gonna bring me down again. And if you would let me try a little harder then I’ll show you, we were made to play a part so much bigger than you thought, until the end.”

 

 

Blastoff
Everything is getting better and better, better and better
Better and better and better
Lets just take a little time to heal
Take a little time, take a little time
Take a little time”

 

 

I’m knocking on your door, I’m not afraid anymore,
cos i’m hoping that i’m already, your everything…”

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Adventure, Entertainment, Music, Travel

We Believe

 

 

One Saturday while we were still at Bulungula, we saw this group of youngsters march in with ze Germans, Paul and Mauritz. I went to check what they were doing and I heard them spitting verses in the store room. Ahh Hip Hop. So I introduced myself and offered to produce a song and music video for them. They came to see me a little later, and I checked my laptop for a beat that they liked, and then they started writing and practising while I set up my mobile recording studio. We came up with a chorus together, based on what their rap was about, and then we recorded vocals in about an hour – they were quite well rehearsed. Then we went around the village recording video in a few locations. This took about an hour, and then I went back to our rondavel and worked through the night and by the next afternoon it was done. They all came back to Bulungula to see it, and they were blown away! They loved it! It was so much fun, and such a pleasure to bring so much joy to these young poets.

“I believe, you believe, we believe, in me!” by Killer Masterz and Double Dragons

Mo and Paul, are two German youngsters, who spent there gap-year volunteer teaching at the local primary school, in Elliotdale. They did so much more for these youngsters besides just teaching, they became friends and helped them with their music, they became part of the community and culture.

Art, Healing, Music, trauma, Travel

Music Therapy

 

The best thing about staying at a backpacker, especially one as remote and rustic as Bulungula, is the interesting, amazing, cool people you meet, getting to know them, and their stories, and having long meaningful chats about whatever. Vita and Francesco were on an adventure of their own around the entire south coast of Africa, part of it on bicycle. We really connected with them and took our meals together and talked endlessly, and just before they left I asked Vita to tell us abit more about what she does back home: What is Music Therapy and how can it help with healing Trauma?

 

 

Music was what kept me almost sane, growing up. I loved all kinds of music, but I would say that Rock, Raggae, and Trance always found a way to lift my spirits, and guide me. For the longest time music really was my religion. And then learning to play the guitar wasn’t easy for me, but I stuck with it, and eventually it became a way for me to express myself, to be creative and artistic which was what my soul yearns for, and to find away to transmute my wounds and the tight anxieties into beautiful words and sounds… the songs of my heart came pouring out.

We got Jasmine a little ukelele that fits her perfectly and I try to encourage her to play, but not push her but just let her take it at her own pace. She loves to sing and make up her own songs, no encouragement needed on that score (at times we have to ask her to calm down) but sometimes she comes up with these spontaneous truly inspired pieces, and towards the end of the video is one of those: “take a little time to heal” she says.

Music

Face your fears!

I stood there not sure what to do next. My lead vocalist just left the stage in a puddle of tears half way into our set, the rest of the band were very late, had not arrived yet, and the audience of some thirty work colleagues were looking at me expectantly… trying to look cool, but my heart is thumping, hands sweating… what to do?

WaJa-guitar_WJ_0015

As an aspiring musician I have always been held back by a debilitating shyness, or when it comes to performance then I guess it’s called acute stage fright. My heart starts racing and pounding, my hands and fingers start shaking, and my breath becomes erratic, and it’s quite obvious that there is no way I can play the guitar and sing my song. So I tended to be a private musician, playing for my own creative expression.

I remember a really disastrous experience once when there was a teaching meeting and they asked me to prepare some music, and I had been working on a really cool new song, and when they called me up I came to the centre of the large room, surrounded by people… I thought ok this is the moment, when I shine. But instead I sucked! I stumbled, fumbled and mumbled my way thru the song and when I finished there was complete and utterly awkward silence. I wished that couch could have swallowed me whole. I must have sounded terrible! Those kind of experiences don’t help at all. Looking back i should have prepared a sing-a-long, but oh well, so much for hindsight.

What did help was joining a band. A friend invited me to join a choir he was starting, and this was a great experience, besides making friends and having fun making religious music, i had to also up my game, and improve technically which meant practise and composure… also i got exposure to live performance in a situation with backing music and many vocalists and so the guitar was not prominent so I could kind of disappear in the background and that suited me just fine. I also didn’t have to worry about making mistakes as they weren’t so noticeable. Sometime later I made a friend at work who sings and we started writing songs together, beautiful simple poetic songs, we just clicked from the word go. Eventually formed a band, with drums, bass and keys, and I found that in the band even though the songs were acoustic guitar driven and i had to be on point, the spotlight was not on me, it was on the lead vocalist, and so I could relax, compose myself and get into it, and enjoy the music, and the stage fright was disappearing with every gig. I still used to get very nervous, and still had shaky hands int he beginning but it cleared up. Essentially as a musician you want to communicate freedom to people not inhibition and fear.

But now, here I was at this work function, standing on stage with my guitar, silence… except for the mic making those feedback squeals, everyone looking at me. We were doing a very emotional song that she wrote for her brother who passed away, and half way thru she broke down crying, and someone took her to another room to recover herself. Note to self: don’t do that song again. I could take a seat and wait for her, but… I don’t know what came over me, really out of character, but I came up to the mic and I… played and I sang my song.

“I don’t ever want to be, lost here without You. I don’t ever want to feel, lost here without You. La la lala laa laa laa… I don’t ever wanna beeeee… Stuck inside a memoryyyy. I don’t ever wanna feeeeel. Lost inside a fantasyyyy, yeaaaah yeah!”

And I was good, they loved it. It felt amazing! Sitting here reminiscing about it I remembered that ‘Art of Living’ seminar which I gate crashed a few months before. I told them about my music and my fear and with help I set myself a challenge to play my music for an audience and the target was within six months. I didn’t think it was gonna happen, and I had completely forgotten about that, but quite unexpectedly, almost six months later… it happened… I did it!

play guit jazzy learn

Live Music

“Everything” by Rara

I’m knocking on your door, I’m not afraid anymore,

I could be anything, that you want me to be,

but i’m hoping that i’m already, your everything…”

To hear more of Raras music you can listen to her debut album “Rapture” and even download tracks off the album off Soundcloud. Just click on [BF3Records] button above… Enjoy!!!

Let us know what you think 🙂

Peace

I12BF3

‘Ur Special’ by SoulfulDrumKid

Bongani Mthimkulu

Another great musician for whom i have a tremendous amount of respect, Bongs and I became friends by one of the serendipitous meetings, we had a youth conference gig in Durban and our drummer bailed on us at the last minute and to ‘make up for it’ he gave me the number of another drummer who was ‘even better’ he gave me Bongani’s number. Unfortunately Bongani couldn’t help us out either on that one, well he wanted to but his manager refused, but he phoned me later and spoke with real sincerity thats very rare he said he liked my manner of speaking and dealing and wanted us to be friends 🙂

And so thats how it started, we began working on music together, we bought a drumkit, started jamming with different artists, recording in our own studio, playing gigs and events, just having fun, and i grew to admire him as an artist and as a wise and soulful kid, drum kid… mad skills on the drums, keys, guitar, any instrument he can pick up… and also in production, it was an honor and learning experience for me to watch him put together “Bambelela” his debut album, house or soulful house, but with diverse flavours and influences and such talented people that he featured – one of my favourite albums of all time!

One day we went to the lake with some friends, guitars and hookas and we jammed some tunes and just had a fun, free, happy afternoon and after the sun went down we went back to the studio and he was deeply in some songwriting mode, the spirit was moving in him… he was downloading something big… i had never seen anyone write such beautiful and powerful, yet simple and catchy lyrics, and when he was done he disappeared into the studio and only emerged the next morning… “U Special” was born that night… its one of my fav songs, and i turn to it to lift my spirits and it never fails. Thanks to this song i really do feel special and beautiful!

Throughout the time i have known him he has always been playing for and serving the church and he continues to do so. His love for Christ is inspiring and the light in his eyes and the magic in his fingers makes me believe that Christ consciousness fills his heart to the point of outpouring. I remember the first time he came home and met my family he just amazed me with his confidence, care, and genuine warmth, and won everyone over – there were no racial barriers at all – he really connected with my mom. He’s a super cool guy, and one of my best friends. It was a pleasure to spend a fun day with him just tagging along, a day in the life of… SDK. I hope you enjoy it!

Peace

WaJa

Adventure, Live Music, Music, Travel

Fountain of Light

 

The first time i ever met Dominique was a few years back, one day, a very busy day, i had my monthly treasury report due and also a recording session at a creche with Hailey and a bunch of kiddies, and my good friend Xola asked if i can fetch someone at the airport, and its very hard to refuse him, so to the airport we went. So we picked this tall and friendly youngster up from the airport  and went directly to the recording session at the creche cos i was running late. I quickly setup and started recording the kids singing their songs, and Dominique naturally got involved and helped out with the recording. I had no idea at that point that he was a super talented singer songwriter, but later that week i saw him walking around, always with the guitar in hand… and when i heard his catchy, bouncy, inspiring songs I immediately got him into studio and, what can i say, it was the beginning of a beautiful partnership!

I have a great deal of respect for this young man, so humble, sincere and charismatic, his voice has the power to uplift and move, he sings with such passion and heart. But besides the music – all the amazing service he offers to his community at such a young age, just astonishes me. If i think back to what i was doing at his age, i am soo, i don’t know, ashamed. My mentality was nowhere near this illumined brightness of spirit. So i thought what better way to launch the New Era than with a short glimpse, insight into his life and music and family. We spent an evening and night and morning with the Sylvester family and they were so welcoming and friendly – we had so much fun and recorded new songs and did the interviews and stuff, it was really memorable times, we will always cherish.

Keep an eye or an ear on this young man, he is destined for great things! 🙂

Peace

WaJa