A handsome trumpet, a double bass that kinda reminds me of a few Tom & Jerry episodes, marimbas hitting that sweet musical spot or a lonely guitar on the sidewalk. Cape Town is without a doubt the muso central of South Africa.
Anywhere you go in this lovely city you are likely to find hopeful musicians performing. Whether they are Jazzing up the Neighbourgood(s) on a Saturday at the Old Biscuit Mill or doing a cover of Fast Car on a guitar and at the Waterfront, you can be sure that you would not have to go somewhere where there won’t be entertainment.
This is absolutely amazing if you live around here. If you feel like going to a live performance you can simply go sit next to the Cape Wheel and watch the marimba players work their magic on the passers-by. I know this always gives me chills. I am often left speechless at the skill of the musicians that I see around the city. The talent is astonishing and in abundance.
In Namibia this isn’t the case. I remember the first time I saw something like this was in Cologne. A guy was jamming the Little Mermaid theme song in front of the Dom Kirche and it completely blew my mind. But since I’ve moved to Cape Town I have unfortunately become a little less swept away by the performances along my ways.
We are bombarded by Facebook events and street performers, and through this we are given so much choice. This abundance is because creatives ad musicians flock to Cape Town, but in some way this flocking is counter-productive for individuals. Because the competition is so stiff and overwhelming, it is damn near impossible to get your name out and to keep the minds of fans. As soon as somebody gets just a little bored, they can find somebody else to listen to.
I always appreciate these “background” sounds in the streets and at events, and I know this type of entertainment is also necessary, but I think the musicians should make a more conscious decision to make their names heard in theses spaces in stead of only their music.
Although it is a part of the industry that is sometimes hard to accept, we need to be aware of the fact that branding makes the world go round. A name is like the foundation of a building, and without a foundation the whole structure is in danger of collapsing.