Sound Advice (Sept 5-11)

Dave Starke and Too Bit Mac perform in Pietermaritzburg on Sunday afternoon.

BILLY SUTER with his weekly gig guide. Gigs in and around Durban include soulful jazz on campus, tributes to Queen and Woodstock, and a salute to Carole King and James Taylor.

Vocalist Dumza Maswana… campus performance.

THE Centre for Jazz and Popular Music, on the Durban campus of the University of KwaZulu-Natal, presents from 6pm on Wednesday, September 5.

Born in a village called Bhira in the Eastern Cape, Maswana composes songs about his life experiences and views.

He started an all-male group and then moved to Johannesburg in the late 2000s. where he is deeply rooted in his culture and religion, so his music displays his strong sense of tradition and religious beliefs.

He has been described by many as “soulful” and there’s a jazz element in his music, although he finds it hard to box himself inti a genre.

His debut album, Molo, was nominated for the South African Music Awards for Best African Adult Album.

Maswana has shared stages with some of the country’s top artists, including Thandiswa Mazwai, Simphiwe Dana, Ringo Madlingozi, Tshepo Tshola, Siphokazi and Victor Ntoni .

For the campus gig he will perform alongside Dalisu Ndlazi on bass, Stan Matlou on drums and Thabo Sikhakhane on trumpet.

The venue is on the second level of the campus’s Shepstone Building. Doors open at 5.30pm. Admission is R80 (R50 for pensioners, R25 for students). Call Thuli at (031) 260 3385 for more details.


IF THE music of the 1960s grabs you, note that you have last chances this week to catch popular showband The Reals with their Woodstock showband entertainment at the Rhumbelow Theatre at Tina’s Hotel, 14 Beryldene Road, Kloof.

Performances are at 8pm nightly until Saturday, September 8, and the final performance is at 2pm on Sunday, September 9. Tickets cost R150 (R130 for pensioners) at Computicket.

Featuring guest singer Marion Loudon, the band – Barry Thomson, Jason Andrew, Dawn Selby and Mali Sewell – present a fine tribute to the hits of yesteryear, associated with the historic music festival held over three days in the 1960s. My full review of the show by clicking here:

Also worth noting is that Port Elizabeth-based mentalist and magician Brendon Peel, ahead of his Hilton Arts Festival performances, will entertain with his show, Hocus Pocus, at the Rhumbelow Theatre at Tina’s Hotel, Kloof, at 8pm on Wednesday and Thursday, September 12 and 13.

Peel has performed across South Africa and internationally. Hocus Pocus is a show filled with mind-reading routines as well as more traditional magic tricks as Peel guides the audience through a variety of illusions and feats blended with a fun-loving, humorous approach.

The venue offers seating at tables of six. Tickets cost R150 (R130 for pensioners) and booking is at Computicket. or by phoning Roland Stansell at 082 499 8636. Note that the cost for two adults and two children is R300 (children free).


SOME 20 years after he last performed to the public in Durban, former Napac dancer, actor and singer Joseph Clark returns soon for four performances of his acclaimed Queen tribute show, which is headed for the Netherlands soon.

Joseph Clarke salutes the hits of Queen from Thursday at the Rockwood Theatre.

Scheduled for the Rockwood Theatre at Sibaya Casino, the two-hour The Music of Queen will have Clark performing alongside Axe Lourens on lead guitar and vocals, Richard Brokensha on guitar and vocals, Kyle Petersen on keyboards, piano and vocals, Trevor Donjeany on bass and Marlon Witbbooi on drums.

Performances are from September 6 to 9, at 8pm Thursday to Saturday and at 2pm on the Sunday, with tickets priced at R180 each. To book phone (031) 161 0000 or mail

The Music of Queen arrives in Durban after having played to more than 30 000 Queen fans in The Gelredome Stadium in The Netherlands in 2011, after which Clark and his band enjoyed European theatre runs and outdoor concert performances until November 2017.

Considered one of the most popular of Queen tribute artists, Clark is not an impersonator of Freddie Mercury.

“I’m not a believer in impersonating great artists. To pay tribute to their music, to keep it alive and new and fresh, is the greatest compliment to their genius,” says this star of Geoffrey Sutherland’s ahead-of-its-time Queen at the Opera, staged to great success at Durban’s Playhouse in the 1990s.

He continues; “I’m thrilled to have been able to perform back-to-back in Europe, Cape Town, Pretoria, Namibia and now Durban, before returning to The Netherlands in November.”

Apart from classics such as We Will Rock You, Another One Bites The Dust, We Are The Champions, I Want To Break Free, Innuendo, Killer Queen, Fat Bottomed Girls, Bicycle Race and Bohemian Rhapsody, the show also features lesser-known Queen hits such as You Take My Breath Away, Is This The World We Created, Too Much Love Will Kill You, Mother Love and In My Defence.


IF YOU’RE a fan of the greats of the pop and rock piano world you are sure to find a lot to enjoy in Rock ‘n’ Roll Nerds: The Piano Greats, a lively, unpretentious and well-paced showband entertainment which, running only from Friday to Sunday (September 7 to 9) in Umbilo, after a successful run at the Kloof Rhumbelow Theatre at Tina’s Hotel, offers fine song choices.

The production, at the Rhumbelow Theatre in Umbilo’s Cunningham Road,  includes among its cast three members of the ’80s tribute show that proved a success recently at Umhlanga’s Rockwood Theatre at Sibaya Casino. They are dreadlocked Durban drummer Dylan van der Linde, energetic and charming vocalist Ofentse Mokhuane and sassy saxophonist Kirsty van der Linde, who is married to Dylan.

They are teamed now with another married Durban couple – Nicky Knott, daughter of the late singer-guitarist and show producer Stuart Mey, and her husband, guitarist Dave Knott. Rounding out the cast are jovial musical director Evan Cullum, who is as strong on vocals as he is on keyboards, and ubiquitous, multi-instrumentalist Andy Turrell, who here is on bass.

Tickets cost R150 (R130 for pensioners) and booking is at Computicket. or by phoning Roland Stansell at 082 499 8636. Note that the cost for two adults and two children is R300 (children free).

For my full review of Rock ‘n’ Roll Nerds: The Piano Greats,click here:


DO YOURSELF a favour and pop along to Pietermaritzburg’s Allan Wilson Shellhole for the 2pm show on Sunday, September 9, by amiable and talented Eshowe-based singer-guitarist Dave Starke, assisted by vocalist Two Bit Mac.

The two will be presenting A Tribute to James Taylor and Carole King at the venue, which opens 90 minutes before the performance for a bring-your-own picnic, although light snacks are available for purchase at the venue. Note that all beverages must be bought at the shellhole pub.

Featuring songs such as Carolina on My Mind, Sweet Baby James, Fire and Rain, So Far Away, Natural Woman, You’ve Got a Friend and Will you Still Love Me Tomorrow, the show is a very entertaining look at the lives and music friends King and Taylor.

Starke is a Cape Town-born entertainer, the former frontman of acoustic rock band Soulfire, who is now a full-time solo performer and composer who appeared on the first season of The Voice South Africa. He composes music for film and television.

Too Bit Mac is South African-born singer who was educated in the US. On her return to South Africa, she performed in High School Music South Africa. She is currently the vocalist in popular KwaZulu-Natal corporate showband, Brandy Bossa Nova.

Tickets for the Pietermaritzburg show cost R150 (R130 for pensioners) and booking is at Computicket outlets or by phoning Roland Stansell at 082 499 8636. Note that the cost for two adults and two children is R300 (children free).

My full review of A Tribute to James Taylor and Carole King, which has already enjoyed Durban performances, where it recently had a bigger lineup of performers, can be seen by clicking here:


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