Monday, March 19, 2007
Arno & Gloria rock the house!
Santam had the stunning Elana Afrika (5FM) as MC & hostess for the evening, and as a surprise, we’d set up an awesome collaboration between jazz mama Gloria Bosman and rock n’ roller Arno Carstens & his band New Porn. Months of planning, negotiations, emailing back and forth, expanding & downsizing ideas, rehearsals between them (because Rockers don’t play no Jazz), until it was finally happening!
We’d booked in at Die Ou Pastorie in Somerset West, a 186-year old landmark that really served up the best old-style hospitality in 5-star tradition, which was totally due to the manager Hannes and his colleagues. We were a minor invasion, & he couldn’t be more accommodating! As Elana says – just call 0800-HANNES – because he made everyone feel looked after, cared about & most of all relaxed.
Santam was hosting 2600 of its employees in a moer-se (mother-of-a) marquee on the polo field at Lourensford Wine Estate, just up the road from Die Ou Pastorie, and it was truly massive! An impressive stage dominated, but because of the sheer size of the marquee, there were huge screens displaying live feeds everywhere to ensure everyone got to see the action – and action there was!
Arno & Gloria have already developed a good understanding of each others music, having performed a few times together in the past, so she was accompanied by backing vocalists (Asanda Bam & Phuthuma Tiso), while the New Porn set-up was Albert Frost on guitars & backing vocals, of course Brendan Jury on keys & viola, and Kevin Leicher & Warren Leicher (bass guitar), and Jerome Reynard (drums). And it was pure rock!
The hour set was a combination of the two stars hits, with Arno softening his persona to suit some of Gloria’s jazzy tunes, which is like the cheetahs at Spier – chilled, but still wild at heart. Gloria, who is actually classically trained, transform into a wild-child, accompanying Arno on hits like Hole Heart, Hiroshima, and Another Universe.
The gala crowd swelled to the stage and immediately transformed the atmosphere from a crisp corporate affair, to a swaying & screaming mass of concert-going fans! Goose-bump material; while Arno just thrived on the adulation and spurred them both on to perform their hearts out!
After we had all cooled down in the artist’s tent, we ended up back at Die Ou Pastorie’s ladies bar and were finally really able to let our hair down (and Elana could remove the double-sided tape keeping her assets from appearing on the front of Heat magazine!). We had an awesome night together, and I am sure some of the old Pastorie ghosts thought about packing their bags!
We’re going tour this Arno & Gloria combination; South Africa needs to see it. Hell, I need to see it again! It’s another classic case of how exciting South African music is in its diversity; and even more exciting when we mix and match (which is what we Peak’ers get off on), because music is a language that bulldozes’ over barriers; unites in its beat and gets the nation dancing!
I have uploaded a cool little video I took of their rehearsal on Saturday afternoon...
UPDATE: I'm struggling getting my vid's on for some reason... will solve it soon! Also, regarding the SA Blog Awards and the mini-war that has developed... I say nothing. Nada. Niks nie! But you can read a pretty good summationof who loves who in the South African blogging community here! Juslike those Gauteng'ers can vloek! Peace people!)
22/03/07 UPDATE: I have no idea how I forgot, but if you do manage to get to Die Ou Pastorie, Head Chef Glen's creations are absolutely stunning! Presentation, taste, and the wonderful 'after-glow' that one feels when sitting and enjoying your coffee - you know you had a meal of class!
Thank you very much for the praise that you have given to me and my team @ Die Ou Pastorie. Although one small thing "a minor inconvenience" yeah right.... You are mistaken, it was actually a great honour in having Lenny, you and your team spending time with us. Yes 0800 Hannes is always available but like I always say "at a cost". hehe lol. Anybody that require an amazing dinner experience or break away to one of the most awesome Guest House in Somerset West do not hesitate to contact me on (021) 8501660 , Hannes