PETE KROG (Lead/rhythm guitar/vocals & songwriting). 1994 – 1996.
Having been a member of the guitar duo, ‘Double P’, which preceded BEDROCK, Pete was a founding member of the band and it was he who bestowed the name of BEDROCK upon his colleagues. Such is his legacy! Pete also alerted the band to the possibilities of home recording as he was the proud owner of a Fostex 4-track machine at that time. Passionate about the blues and, of course, guitars, Pete brought the influence of many of his favourites such as Stevie Ray Vaughan, ZZ Top and Tom Petty to the band. Pete’s departure in 2004 to Mauritius was driven by his desire to pursue his career as a commercial airline pilot. Today, he is a member of the acclaimed Mauritius-based band, Wave Kerosene and maintains close links with his BEDROCK colleagues. Although Pete left BEDROCK before their recordings activities commenced, he is a fairly prolific song writer and contributed the track, “Cold T”, to the band’s RECOVERY album.
PETE SHOUT (Guitars/bass/keyboards/vocals & songwriting). 1994 – 2015.
Originally hailing from Bulawayo in Zimbabwe, Pete was the other half of the musical duo, ‘Double P’, it was through his collaboration with PETE KROG that the idea to transform from a two-piece, into a fully fledged band, came about. Having been a resident of the Namibian town in which they lived, Oranjemund, Pete had a good insight into what talented existed on the local music scene. In seeking to recruit additional members for their band, the first person they approached was local drummer, EDDIE HEUSDENS. Eddie had a long history of playing with local bands over the years and had had some studio recording experience. Having signed Eddie up, the original quartet was completed with the acquisition of CHARLES PIGGOTT on lead/rhythm guitar and lead vocals.
The band originally rehearsed at in an isolated building outside the town, however, they later migrated to Pete’s house in 6th Avenue, hence the evolution of Dining Room Studios. It was at this address that all the band’s recordings were made and where so much of the band’s history took place. There was even a pact with neighbours to ensure that the band could live in “harmony” with fellow residents!
For the first 8 years of the band’s existence Pete played bass and backing vocals, occasionally singing lead. Although he had written and co-written unrecorded songs with PETE KROG during their ‘Double P’ days, it was not until the band recorded RECOVERY (2001) than did his songwriting skills begin to develop. Having contributed just 2 songs to the band’s first album of originals, he increased this to 3 for the band’s next album, SO, WHERE’S THE PARTY? (2003). He co-wrote a fourth song with MIKE MILLAD and EDDIE HEUSDENS. With the prolific, and confident, songwriting KENNY RAMAGE in their ranks, there was little pressure on other members to generate material.
This was to change after KENNY RAMAGE’s departure in 2004 as their next release, SIMPLICITY (2008), comprised 14 tracks, all of which were written by Pete Shout. This trend continued for their next two albums, DESERT ROCK (2011) and SAND CIRCLE (2014). Band changes also required that Pete switch from bass to lead guitar, a role he’d never aspired to in the past! To add further weight, he was also required to sing lead vocals since HEIKO DOEDENS’ departure in 2008.
Largely the band’s unofficial manager and administrator, it was Pete and EDDIE HEUSDENS’ dogged determination that ensured the group’s survival for 20 years and beyond.
EDDIE HEUSDENS (Drums & percussion and, very occasionally, backing vocals & songwriting). 1994 – 2015.
In agreeing to join BEDROCK at the outset, Eddie brought with him a wealth of experience, including studio time, as he had been drumming since his teenage years and had been a member of every prominent rock band the town had boasted over the years. In recent years he had been a member of two stand-out bands in TORQ and STEAM. Eddie had previously organised auditions for PETE SHOUT with some of his previous outfits, however, this did not lead to any further involvement, at the time, for Pete. They’d become friends through their common involvement in the local amateur drama club’s activities. Another one of Eddie’s strengths is that he knew more about backlines, amplifiers and
EDDIE’s solid rock drumming style would underpin the band’s sound throughout their career. Ever reliable, Eddie often kept his head whilst others were losing theirs! Eddie is also a very inventive chap who is good with his hands. So good, in fact, that he actually built his own electronic drum kit. This creation became known as the Urang-U-Tan and served him well for a couple of years before it crumbled in a heap and died one night at a gig! Together with KENNY RAMAGE, he also help design and build what was probably the World’s heaviest racking system which, although it was intended to make the band’s work lighter, actually made it so heavy that it (the rack) never left the ground – literally! It was so heavy that not even castors could be attached to it! Still, the band have always believed that it is better to try and fail than not to try at all. That’s our story and we’re sticking to it!
Apart from his drumming and general inventiveness, Eddie also contributed significantly to most of the band’s song arrangements and ideas for drum fills and percussion. In collaboration with KENNY RAMAGE he co-wrote the song, “Yeah, Yeah” on the band’s album, SO, WHERE’S THE PARTY? He also came up with the idea for the title of that album, as he did with the SIMPLICITY release. He earned a second songwriting credit on SO, WHERE’S THE PARTY? for the song, “Cliche”, which he co-write with MIKE MILLAD and PETE SHOUT.
Eddie survived a number of new misses during his time with the band, including having a room divider thrown on top of him at a gig at a local restaurant. Although this occurred mid-song, Eddie managed to just about keep the bass drum going and regathered his senses after removing the offending piece of furniture with his free hand! His other attribute is that, being a 2nd Dan black belt, his presence was always useful when it came to fending off unruly patrons. This is another reason the rest of the band always addressed him as “Sir”!
CHARLES PIGGOTT (Lead vocals/lead & rhythm guitars). 1994 – 1999.
With a background and education in Fort Victoria and Bulawayo in Zimbabwe, the multi-talented and extremely capable, Charles, was recruited for the band after they’d all attended a function at the town’s Little Theatre on the theme HOLLYMOOD. Amongst the props on stage was a Casio guitar which piqued the interest of PETE KROG, EDDIE HEUSDENS and PETE SHOUT who were still looking for a fourth member for their band. When they asked whose guitar it was, their query led to Charles. Although they all knew Charles as a work colleague and fellow townsman, they had no idea that his skills extended before the work place and, of course, the golf course. It didn’t take much persuading before Charles agreed to enter the fray and he quickly established himself as the band’s charismatic front man.
Charles’ very good voice, and interpretation of the songs, perfectly complemented the cover material the band were doing at the time. He was also no slouch with the guitar and often surprised his band mates, and audiences, with his under-stated “chops” when he got into it. His very diverse taste in music ensured that the band’s set lists had a wide appeal.
Although Charles left the band just as they were getting into creating and recording their own material, he did handle the male lead vocals on the band’s very first album release, LA CANTINA. This CD comprised a collection of some of the band’s most popular covers of the day. Charles’ versions of songs like Bryan Adams’ “Summer Of ’69”, “So Bizarre” and Oasis’ “Don’t Look Back” were as good as it gets. His loss was badly felt by the band who never enjoyed the value of an excellent lead singer in their ranks again, apart from HEIKO DOEDENS short period of participation some years later.
JOHN ROGERS (Guitar & vocals). 1996.
John Rogers’ involvement in the band almost occurred by accident and only came about after, through doing recording work for the local amateur dramatics club, the band’s members discovered that John owned quite a sophisticated home recording studio. One of the most generous and accommodating guys around, John readily gave of his time and facilities to record some demos for the band, this being the first of their fledgling output. A competent guitar player himself, John had an ear for what was required and was very particular when it came to the standard of the quality of his work. When the band first started working with John, they had no reason to suspect that they would soon be looking to recruit a replacement. This realisation soon dawned on them when PETE KROG announced his departure. With John and his guitar skills on the scene, he was a natural successor and soon joined the BEDROCK line-up. Sadly, after just one public gig, he also announced his departure from the town! So, although John’s involved with the band was fairly brief, he made a memorable contribution to the future shape of things, particularly through his recording activities with the band.
KEN MALHERBE. (Rhythm guitar & vocals). 1997 – 1999.
Another friend of the band’s members prior to actually joining, Ken was well respected for his classical guitar skills. A big fan of JJ Cale’s, Ken was very particular in getting his acoustic arrangements right and aligned as closely as possible to the original versions. It was this more acoustic, softer, touch and influence that Ken brought to the band after he had agreed to become a part of the Bedrock Story. Generally a bit of an introvert, Ken was content with discreetly contributing to the whole endeavour, rather than being in the spotlight himself. His quiet, calm, professional, manner served as a steady anchor in the second row of the band. All this could change quite dramatically, of course, when Ken sensed there was a good party in store but we will leave this for another time! Ken put forward a number of useful and constructive ideas during the time with the band and, although he left before the group really got into recording, he did play on the band’s covers album, LA CANTINA, upon which he also handled the lead vocals on “Ken’s Song”.
KENNY RAMAGE. (Lead/rhythm guitar/vocals & songwriting). 1997 – 2004.
Having been a resident of Oranjemund for some time and through his activities in the local amateur dramatic circle, Kenny’s musical pedigree, including his guitar playing abilities, were well known to many. Having been raised in Zambia he had played in a number of well known bands, culminating in his membership of the high profile South African rock band, SHERIFF, in the 70’s. Having declined an earlier approach to join BEDROCK, he had a change of heart in 1997 after attending one of their gigs.
Kenny’s arrival was something of a revelation for the band as he brought with him a considerable amount of knowledge and experience from his semi-professional playing days. Not only did he bring his well honed guitar playing skills but he also understood the recording process. Over and above that, he was a confident songwriter and possessed highly developed IT skills which were instrumental at putting the band at the forefront of website development and a capitalising on emerging music-related IT technologies via the internet.
Handling the recording process on the band’s first release, LA CANTINA, was an extremely steep learning curve for the band’s members. With little time to familiarise themselves with the new technology, the quality of the recording suffered as a result. As a result the band did not produce further copies of this release after the first quantity sold out.
The follow up album, RECOVERY, was a completely different experience. By now the technology, “demystified” by Kenny, had been mastered and he was in prolific songwriting form contributing 10 of the album’s tracks. Of these, the opening track, “Rock ‘n Roll Man”, became a break-through song as it was the first of the band’s recordings to be aired on commercial radio, ironically enough, on SAFM. The track was later selected by the respected SA Rock Digest as one of the Top 30 local productions for that year.
Undoubtedly motivated by this success, Kenny contributed a further 10 songs to the band’s next CD release, SO, WHERE’S THE PARTY? Included amongst these was the BIG rocker, “Crowd Invasion”, which also charted in the SA Rock Digest’s mp3 Top 20, peaking at #18. “Crowd Invasion” became the first BEDROCK song to enjoy regular radio play on Namibian commercial radio stations. Notwithstanding the knowledge they had fast gained in the development of their sound engineering skills, the band “imported” the well known former Rhodesia Television sound guru, NEIL THAIN, to assist in their quest to produce a high quality album. Neil’s contribution was immeasurable, not least of which was what he was able to share with the band.
Kenny’s departure from the band in 2004 marked the end of what had been a particularly challenging, constructive and energised period for the band. They had produced two good recordings and his songwriting competencies had gone a long way to put the band on the local map. Their live gigs had also improved considerably and the band had distinguished themselves at events such as the Bank Windhoek Rock Festival in Windhoek, where they were without peer amongst the array of local performers, as well as at the South African Breweries-sponsored, Rock Contest in Keetmanshoop. During this period they had established a strong presence on the internet via their website and had made their first television appearances, both locally in Namibia, as well as in documentaries on Namibia shown in Germany.
Fortunately, and despite the constant loss of personnel, the band were able to maintain and build on the success built during these years.
JENNY MALHERBE. (Lead/backing vocals & tambourine). 1997 – 1999.
As the wife of guitarist, Ken, Jenny, who originally hailed from Salisbury in Rhodesia, put, not only a pretty face in the front of the band, but also her extremely fine vocal talents. Ken and Jen had long been regular acoustic performers on the town’s entertainment circuit, creating an irresistible mix with Ken’s strong guitar skills and her voice. Initially finding the band’s approach to their rock ‘n roll material a bit disconcerting compared to her much more precise, and rehearsed, treatment of her acoustic material, she more-or-less adjusted to the new environment! Jenny’s voice was that of a “song bird” and her presence witnessed a marked increase in attendance at the band’s gigs. Her rendition of songs such as Buddy Holly’s “That’ll Be The Day”, Texas’ “Not In It For Love”, John Fogerty’s “Southern Stream Line” and the Eagles’ “Desperado” always had audiences screaming for more. Sadly, Jenny’s vocal contribution did not extend beyond the recording of LA CANTINA as she and Ken left the community shortly thereafter. Her version of “Desperado”, accompanied only by piano played by a young DAN SHOUT. is a memorable one.
MIKE MILLAD (Lead/rhythm guitar/vocals and songwriting). 2000 – 2003.
Another “quiet” character, Mike happily stepped into the BEDROCK breach after the quick, and successive, departures of CHARLES PIGGOTT, JOHN ROGERS and the MALHERBES. Heavily influenced by Mark Knopfler’s style of play, Mike, once again, brought a slightly different emphasis to the band. Mike’s guitar playing abilities could be easily under-rated, however, he was extremely capable and, although he didn’t write many songs for the band, his “Nobody There” from the SO, WHERE’S THE PARTY? album was one of the biggest rockers the band ever performed and recorded. Mike contribution to, both, RECOVERY and SO, WHERE’S THE PARTY? was significant. On the former release he composed the romantic song, “Vision”, and, on the latter, excelled himself with the dreamy, “This Place”, and the all-out rocker, as previously mentioned, “Nobody There”. He also took the lead in compiling the lyrics to “Cliche” with band mates, PETE SHOUT and EDDIE HEUSDENS.
DAVE MacMILLAN (Lead/rhythm guitars, vocals & songwriting). 2003, 2005 – 2007.
Dave was something of a “yo-yo” man in the band, drifting off and returning again from time to time! With an impressive and lengthy musical CV from his years with well known outfits such as Kimberley’s LAGER LOUTS, as well as owning retail music equipment stores, Dave played a useful role in the band during tough times following personnel departures. Although he did some songwriting with the band, none of these songs were ever recorded by BEDROCK. They were, however, performed in the live sets. Few who were there will ever forget such masterpieces as “Sex Machine” and “My Girlfriend’s A Goofball”! It was during his time with the band that Dave identified a young man named HEIKO DOEDENS as a potential talent. Dave had come across HEIKO during one of his one-man-band gigs and earmarked him. Not since CHARLES PIGGOTT’S departure had BEDROCK enjoyed the presence of a recognised vocalist so HEIKO’s arrival was something of a Godsend, albeit a short lived one. After leaving BEDROCK (the second time), Dave settled into the lead guitarist’s role in the town’s other rock band, SNOBLIND. In due course he, too, left the community and is now settled in Sedgefield where he is very active on the local music scene and as a singer/guitarist.
ROZANE FICHARDT (Keyboards). 2004.
A very accomplished piano player, Rozane had hitherto concentrated all his efforts on Church activities. It was only after giving considerable thought to PETE SHOUT’s invitation to join the band that she agreed to “give it a go”. Steeping completely out of her comfort zone, Rozane soon settled down and, although she found the choice of material, and band culture somewhat strange and perplexing, she soon become a valued member of the group. She had come in at a very difficult time when PETE SHOUT and EDDIE HEUSDENS realised that they had been reduced, unintentionally and unpredictability, to a two-piece. With Rozanne taking on keyboards and Pete switching to guitars and vocals, they managed to reset themselves as a trio. Shortly thereafter, SOLANGE HEUSDENS, also “signed up” on percussion so, numerically, the band returned to a quartet. After a very promising start, Rozane decided to leave the band and the community leaving a sizable void which, once again, needed to be filled.
SOLANGE HEUSDENS (Keyboards/backing vocals & percussion). 2004 – 2014.
Having been drummer EDDIE’s wife for many a year, Solange had followed his rock ‘n roll fortunes at dozens of gigs as they ebbed and flowed in the small desert town in which they lived. With the band really struggling for some consistency, EDDIE suggested that Solange come on board to fill whatever role was required, particularly as she had some knowledge of piano. And so it was that Solange would become a permanent fixture in the band, never missing a practice or gig and always being prepared to chip in with the heavy duties – like packing up the gear after gigs! (This made a difference to Eddie who always complained about his bad back!). After Rozane’s departure, Solange was a natural successor on the keyboards. And so it was that she contributed to the band’s activities over the next 10 years, playing on three of their albums – SIMPLICITY, DESERT ROCK and SAND CIRCLE. With the dissolution of the existing BEDROCK line-up at the end of 2014, Solange decided to retire from the world of rock ‘n roll and is undoubtedly enjoying her well earned “retirement” from the loud noise, bright lights, fame and adulation!
HEIKO DOEDENS (Lead vocals). 2005 – 2008.
Heiko was brought to the band’s attention by DAVE MacMILLAN after he had apparently jumped up to share the vocal mic with Dave at one of his one-man gigs. Like Dave, the bands on saw Heiko’s potential and he was quickly enlisted as their front man, quality vocalists being extremely hard to come by in their environment. Heiko was an immediate success, not only due to his vocal abilities but also as a result of his appearance and youthfulness. Although the band had always enjoyed great support across a diverse range of people and age groups, Heiko’s presence reinforced this. When it really put effort into it, his voice was similar to Paul Rodgers and his rendition of Bad Company’s, “Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love”, or the Who’s, “Behind Blue Eyes”, were highlights of any gig.
Heiko’s arrival also allowed PETE SHOUT to write the songs for the band’s forthcoming album, SIMPLICITY, with him in mind. The majority of the songs featured content appropriate to the young generation with Heiko given them the vocal justice they deserved. The album subsequently proved to be a popular release with Heiko’s treatment of the opener, “Wheel O’ Hearts”, as well as the pop songs, “My Girlfriend” and “Tell Your Ma”, together with the rock anthem, “The Alchemist”, being stand-out tracks. “My Girlfriend” went on to become the most played BEDROCK track on Namibian commercial radio with its catchy refrain and trumpet chorus. Another track which featured on the album was “She’s A Lady”, composed by PETE SHOUT during his ‘Double P’ days. “She’s A Lady” has gone on to become one of the band’s most popular downloads.
Heiko also started to explore his own songwriting potential writing the lyrics for “Fabulous” for which PETE SHOUT composed the tune. Things, however, were not so fabulous when Heiko took his leave in 2008 for Windhoek’s greener pastures.
ADRI HENNING (Bass). 2008.
Now you see her, now you don’t! That, literally, was the extent of Adri’s involvement with the band. An accomplished pianist and fledgling saxophone player, Adri had lots of musical talent and, at the time she joined the band, was set for the long haul. Life, however, got in the way and, having made the switch to bass and having played live at the launch of the band’s 2008 CD, SIMPLICITY, she, too, departed from the community!
POLLA PRETORIUS (Bass). 2010 – 2013.
Before joining the BEDROCK fold, Polla had been a stalwart of one of the town’s other rock outfits, SNOBLIND. Together with WARREN WEIDEMANN on drums, he had anchored the band’s rhythm section for many a year and many a gig. A man of few words (unless the Bulls are winning!), Polla was another dependable character who played an above average bass. Initially somewhat reticient about joining BEDROCK following SNOBLIND’s demise, he eventually relented, much to the relief of the BEDROCK folk. Together with Eddie on drums, a great, tight, rhythm section was once again established for the band with Polla going on to record DESERT ROCK with the band. Once again, just as thing were going swimmingly well, Polla advised that he was to leave town in pursuit of other career options. During his 3 years with the group, Polla had made an invaluable contribution to the Bedrock Story.
GERT MULLER (Bass/backing vocals). 2013 – 2014.
A closet musician for many a year, Gert finally decided to take a step out into the musical sunlight when the band, as had so often been the case, found themselves in a dire predicament with the departure of POLLA PRETORIUS. Not having played bass, or in a band before, Gert was thrown the tough assignment of holding up BEDROCK’s rhythm section. His saving grace is that he is full of talent, potential, confidence and an extremely high work ethic. So much so that, in a very short period of time, he was playing and holding his own like a seasoned veteran of the rock scene! The tragedy was that Gert had come into the fold so late in the day. There is no doubt that had the band’s existence in Oranjemund run to a longer period, he would have played a major role in their fortunes. Be that as it may, Gert achieved much in a very short period of time playing on the “big stage” at some major music events and appearing on the band’s 2014 album release, SAND CIRCLE. His live bass line on the CD’s title track, “Sand Circle”, was something to enjoy.