Shortstraw On The Industry, Girl Crushes & 2015 PLUS Win Tix To Park Acoustics

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Park Acoustics is back on Saturday 28 November at Voortrekker Monument with another epic lineup of great local talent including Goldfish, Shortstraw, Haezer and many more!

Tickets: R200 online at www.parkacoustics.co.za, R250 at the gate, R100 After 6PM. (Free for children under 6, R15 per vehicle paid at entrance to the nature reserve.) 

** For your chance to win double tickets to Park Acoustics simply send your name, number & email address to win@lovesamusic.co.za with the subject line Park Acoustics **

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Alastair live at Oppikppi this year

Incase you haven’t noticed, we’re huge Shortstraw fans, and we love the positive influence they’ve had on the SA music scene over the years! So Simon took the opportunity to chat to the bands frontman (and all round nice guy), Alastair Thomas, to catch up on what the guys have been up to this year.

Simon: Flip, 2015’s pretty much gone. What have the highlights been for you guys?

Alastair: I know… FLIP, right!? Crazy. Highlights include Oppikoppi, playing to what could very well be the biggest crowd we’ve ever played to; our tour to Japan, which is always such a treat; and we’re really looking forward to our Puma Happy Holidays tour coming in December with pals, Desmond and the Tutus and Grassy Spark. Defos gonna be a highlight. 

Simon: Chat to us about the state of the local music industry through your eyes.

Alastair: Yuss, the local industry is as strong as ever at the moment! The amount of awesome bands out there is ridiculous; bands like Lunatic Wolf, Grassy Spark, Boxer, Go Barefoot, Art Snakes, Gangsterdam, Early Hours – the list goes on and on. And with initiatives like Dank (a night of 4 or 5 bands at the Bohemian where entrance is 10 bucks, organised by the dudes from Boxer) being well attended, the industry is looking like it’s just going to get better and better. It’s a very exciting time to be a part of the SA music scene. 

Simon: What about the long-term sustainability of new bands entering the market? Is the support structure strong enough to provide decent growth opportunities for them?

Alastair: While there ARE loads of great bands in the country, there aren’t a load of people who enjoy listening to live music who are willing to pay enough money for these musicians to survive. It’s very sadly still a hobby for most bands because people refuse to pay decent amounts to watch these bands. We all have day jobs in Shortstraw and I don’t think that’ll ever change. That being said, Dank IS an awesome initiative because it gives these up and coming bands the opportunity to play to these big crowds and get their name out there. But now, as I say it out loud, I realise it’s much in the same vein as being paid in exposure! Although the beauty of these bands playing as a hobby is that it means there is still an abundance of passion that goes into playing the music, especially live. So, as someone who is rolling in exposure, I know that the feeling you get playing to a packed crowd who is vibing to your music is worth more than any amount of money. Doesn’t pay the rent though!

Simon: And therein lies the challenge. But I totally agree with you, the scene feels like it’s continuing to gain momentum and it’s an exciting one to be in! On to other questions… Locally and internationally it’s been quite a year for colabs. Who would your dream colab be?

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Alastair: For us, I think it’d be rad to do a colab with a quirky rapper. Someone like Eminem, but when he was still funny. That’s one option. The other would be to get a band with super amazing female vocals, like First Aid Kit (an amazing Swedish duo for those who don’t know) to do a colab that hits you in the feels. 

Simon: We all know about your long standing bromance with Matthew Mole ;) Any girl crushes we should know about?

Alastair: There’s this fantasmical DJ duo called Swan Ronson. They’re pretty fly. 

Simon: What fun stuff are you up to for the rest of the year, and what can we look forward to next year?

Alastair: We’re pretty darn amped for our December tour coming up. All the details will be posted on our social media things this month, so keep an eye out and hopefully see you at a show real soon. Next year we’re hoping to do our first European tour, so let’s all hold thumbs for the rand.

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