21st April 2003

Texas-based Kurt Shoemaker gives his unique views on SA music

BEDROCK – SO WHERE’S THE PARTY? (Criminal Records)

The jol is right here, y’all. Bedrock’s third album is immediately accessible fun. This Bedrock outing is nicely consistent, the best yet by a band surely fun to party with, to last call and beyond.

For one thing, ‘So, Where’s the Party?’ is freer, with an aggressive, purposeful guitar. No pretentious noodling here. This creative bar band has an irreverent attitude, an ironic stance, and songs featuring drinking beer and recreational inhaling.

‘So Where’s the Party?’ open with the title track and two other palpable rock songs, slides into a smokey reggae tune, then back to rock with ‘Mobile Party’. The sad sing-along ‘I Believe In Angels’ proves you can catch Bedrock being serious.

‘Yeah Yeah’ has a modified ‘We Will Rock You’ Queen beat behind a motivating fierce rock guitar and excessive partying lyrics. Sounds great.
(We should grant that beat public domain status, like Bo Diddley’s shave and a haircut.)

‘Cliché’ plays on clichéd rock lines such as “You’re always in my dreams, even when I’m asleep”! Then a touching song that brings tears to a grown man’s eyes, ‘Last Round’. ‘Rickshaw Baby Blues’ is a skankin’ Beatles-Dylanesque number.

‘Crowd Invasion’ is like a big truck barreling down the highway, a wow song
(made me say “Wow” a few times, anyway), and it’s up on, too.
Its rock movements features an assertive classic rock sound this classic rock guy enjoys.

Bedrock is a band of… mature musos who know our world’s rock heritage and
play their own original Bedrockin’ jams of mostly big, up-tempo songs.
Play hard, and be sure to replace those precious body fluids, guys. The party is wherever Bedrock plays fun hard rock.

Kurt Shoemaker, Blanco, Texas


7th April 2003


1. [3] (1) LekkerByDieSee – Diff Olie (‘Die Borrelbad Insident’/Boereplaas)
2. [4] (2) Spook – Spinnekop (‘Soet September EP’/Afrimusik)
3. [5] (3) Wish Your Were Here – Liela (
4. [8] (4) Stand By Me – Tait (Fresh)
5. [6] (5) Vampyre Girl – The Awakening (‘Sacrificial Etchings’/Intervention Arts)
6. [13] (6) Fishes Of Men – Metalmorphosis (‘Blistered’/Silva Moon)
7. [1] (1) Beach Girl – Natalia (‘The Street Level Sessions’/Indie)
8. [2] (2) Room2Breathe Sampler – Semisane (‘Room2Breathe’/BMG)
9. [10] (9) The Warrior Sampler – Ipi ‘NTombi featuring Margaret Singana(‘The Warrior’/Gallo)
10. [14] (10) Say Goodbye – Scarlet Host (Demo/Indie)
11. [9] (1) Stoute Boude – Anton Goosen en Beeskraal (”n Vis Innie Bos’/Gallo)
12. [12] (2) Siamese Sampler – Siamese (‘Three Piece project’/BMG)
13. [7] (7) Diep In Gauteng – Stefan Lombard (‘Alleen’/Afrimusik)
14. [18] (14) Powerzone Roadshow Sampler – Various (
15. [21] (15) Open Your Eyes – KGB (‘The First Born’/Mothermix)
16. [11] (8) Broken Innocence – Alexis (‘Overload’/Pt. Music)
17. [20] (17) Charlie – Lorraine Shannon (‘Lorraine Shannon’/Gallo)
18. [19] (18) Crowd Invasion – Bedrock (‘So Where’s The Party?’/Criminal Records)**
19. [15] (5) Toeka Sampler – Steve Hofmeyr (‘Toeka’/EMI)
20. [16] (1) Dinosaur – Forest Moon (‘Forest Moon’/Forest Moon)

17th February 2003

‘Crowd Invasion’ – Bedrock
Goodtime rock track from the brand new CD ‘So Where’s The Party?’ from
Namibia‘s Bedrock, the band in the sand. Fans of Judas Priest will love this song.

26th November 2001


Well, as some of you know, The Band In The Sand staged their Western Cape debut at Pieter-Dirk Uys’ Evita Se Peron in Darling recently and what a Hot November Night (and occasion) it turned out to be. Not even the rugby Test match between South Africa & France could draw people away – and the few that were ended up regretting it. Sorry, guys, we warned you that Bedrock would perform better than the Bokke – and we did! Read all about our experiences in the DIARY page of our website

Our latest CD “Recovery” has been enjoying really brisk sales thanks to the independent South African music industry. We have thrived on the back of some great support, especially from the folk at the SA Rock Digest. It’s largely thanks to them that the opening track of our CD, “Rock ‘n Roll Man”, sat in the Top 20 of top South African songs in September/October of this year. If you are unfamiliar with this crew please visit their site at : for write-ups and reviews on Bedrock and their activities. Our CD is also carried on the OneWorld internet music shopping site at

Thanks, also, to Sugar & Bruce Millar for the very positive exposure they have given us, Namdeb and Oranjemund on the “Rock Slot” of Bruce’s Wednesday morning music show on SAFM. Similar thanks, also, to those radio stations who have seen it fit to give our material airplay, including our friends in Windhoek. We have recovered our costs on the first CD and are now busy writing for next year’s release which will really “blow your socks off”. (We’ll try to release it in summer so your feet don’t get cold!). I’m afraid I cannot say any more than that!

We would really appreciate it if you folks, when you’re out doing your music shopping, would ask your local music store manager if he stocks RECOVERY by BEDROCK. This is one small way which we can spread our name around the retail trade as our direct approaches have met up with the usual lack of enthusiasm one expects from the local formal music sector.

This is the busy time of the year (as usual) and we’re on the road. Our next out-of-town gig will be in Luderitz on the night of Friday, 30 November, where we will be rockin’ RUMOURS PUB & RESTAURANT in the Kapp’s Hotel building. If you wanna have a night of real, live, down-to-earth fun and rock be there. You won’t regret it.

For our Oranjemund supporters, we will be playing the following afternoon, 1 December, at Don Esteban.

Finally, thanks once again for all your support. As long as you folk are out there to encourage us, we’ll keep doing it.


Pete, Kenny, Mike & Eddie

5th November 2001

Texas-based Kurt Shoemaker gives his unique views on SA music

BEDROCK – RECOVERY (2001 Criminal Records)

The more I think about it, the more I think Bedrock is a cool band
name. They play fundamental rock, with “fun” a big part of that. A further
implication of the name goes back to the sexual origin of the term “rock
‘n’ roll”, that these guys make bed-rockin’ rock.
In the liner notes, they regard their music as “garage rock”, but I
think they’re too good for that term. The tons of garage rock I’ve heard
has been made by unknown Sixties kids who didn’t make it beyond their high
school gym, and whose bands broke up due to college, the draft, or even
just graduating from high school. ‘Recovery’ is better than garage rock,
but is still pure fun like classic garage rock.

On ‘Recovery’, our men in Namibia perform a varied set of originals,
and most of the songs are up-tempo. They include rock anthems in ‘Rock ‘n’
Roll Man’ and ‘Take a Look’. There’s a bluesy number (at least the singer
feels sorry for himself and his friends) on ‘I’m a Loser’. We have the slow
song for getting close to someone special, ‘Shadows In Your Eyes’. An ode
to love, ‘Man Who Needs a Woman’. And, perhaps in keeping with the CD’s
title, the final track, the amusing ‘Babbelas Blues’.

Drinking with friends and music seems to be a theme — so is it a sport
in Namibia like it is here in Blanco, Texas? For this activity, there’s
‘Cold T’ and ‘Saturday Night’. After listening to Bedrock’s ‘Recovery’ I
feel like I went out and caught their show, complete with their sense of

‘Recovery’, rocks with clear and distinct instrumentation, no fancy
progressive noodling stretches — only good ole rock with a nice lead
guitar. These guys have the party-in-the-garage sense of fun.
Overall, ‘Bedrock’ is a cool name — and they make cool, honest, rock

Kurt Shoemaker, Blanco, Texas

Dated : 12/08/01

This week [last week] Title – Artist (Album/Label)

1. [1] Not About You – Zen Arcade (‘Snowflake’/Indie)
2. [5] Glorious Gem – Venessa Nolan (‘Burn’/Rhythm)
3. [2] Set Of Wheels (Karoo Anthem) – Karen Zoid (‘Poles Apart’/EMI)
4. [15] Why – Garth Taylor (‘Why?’/PT Records)
5. [3] Indigo Girl – Watershed (‘In The Meantime’/EMI)
6. [-] Waiting For A Miracle – Dog Detachment (‘Best Kept Secrets’/RetroFresh)
7. [8] Khululuma – The Branch (Rhythm)
8. [13] Conquistador – Circus (‘In The Arena’/RetroFresh)
9. [7] Crazy Over You – Zen Arcade (‘Snowflake’/Indie & ‘Showcase: 3
10. [4] Undying Light – Edi Niederlander (‘Dreamland’/Indie)
11. [11] She Says – Cutting Jade (‘Showcase: 3 Unearthed’/Sony)
12. [-] Put A Little Love – Lucky Dube (‘Soul Taker’/Gallo)
13. [18] Lay Me Down – Gripp (‘Showcase 3/Sony)
14. [20] Rock And Roll Man – Bedrock (‘Recovery’/Criminal Records)
15. [6] Afrikaners Is Plesierig – Karen Zoid (‘Poles Apart’/EMI)
16. [-] Sweet Stellenganga – Akkedis (‘Voortvlugtend’/SSS Records)
17. [10] Thank You – Lionel Bastos (‘Rising Above The Madness’/SAFM)
18. [14] Long Holiday – The Sunshines (‘Long Holiday’ EP/Tel Michael)
19. [17] Shout – Fruit Fly Navigators (‘Seratonin’/Bionic)
20. [-] Stormsee – Mel Botes (‘Oomblik Van Waansin’/Janus)


Oranjemund, according to all who live, work or visit there, is Namibia’s
best kept secret. It’s a smallish mining town under the collective
patronage of NamDeb (Namibia De Beers) and most who live there are involved
with the mine is some way or another. It’s not known as a big rock music
town, but recently some of its more mature citizens have been making a huge
racket and inspiring the younger rockers to do the same. Bedrock is a
four-piece band comprising Pete Shout, Kenny Ramage, Mike Millad, and
Eddie. They play the occasional live gig and recently found the time to
fashion their debut rock album, ‘Recovery’.

Seeing as Oranjemund does not have a full, state-of-the-art recording
studio, ‘Recovery’ was produced in slightly lower-key surroundings (see the
sleeve for clues). It tips its hard-hat most prominently to the rock sounds
of the ‘70s and celebrates rock’s history, and its effects on the
band-members, in the album’s opening track, ‘Rock And Roll Man’. Here all
those seminal rock heroes get name-checked and honoured in a sort of
‘Namibian Pie’ way.

But the rest of the album is a mixture of original rock songs performed by
a group of older rockers who clearly realize and accept that an NME
correspondent is unlikely to pitch up in the near future, but don’t care at
all. Sometimes the joy is purely in the writing, recording and releasing of
music from the heart, and of course, getting to play it with your (band)
mates. Doesn’t matter where you are, or how old you are. (SS)

SA Rock Digest


Just to warn you that another storm front is on its way to the Cape, but
this time it’s a sandstorm in the shape of BEDROCK (The Band In The Sand)!

Following on the lamentable success that the band’s latest CD, “Recovery”,
is experiencing – with the opening track “Rock ‘n Roll Man” having peaked
at #14 on the SA Rock Digest’s Top Twenty of SA Music for three successive
weeks in a row – the band have been booked to play a gig at Pieter
Dirk-Uys’ Peron Theatre at Darling on the night of Saturday, 10 November,
2001. This promises to be one huge party and we’d really like to see as
many of our Cape Town friends there as possible. There are plenty of B &
B’s and camping sites out at Darling so why not make a weekend of it? If
you haven’t seen BEDROCK “live” then you’re definitely going to enjoy this
good, old-fashioned party.

Chow for now – confirmation of arrangements, entry fees, etc will come at a
later stage.

SA Rock Digest


Texas-based Kurt Shoemaker gives his unique views on SA music


To use an old joke I first heard in reference to the healthy girls from a
hamlet outside my hometown: What is there in SA’s water that inspires so
many cool band names? Or maybe it’s in the Castle Lagers, the Windhoeks,
and the Tassies?
Cool is hard to define, but we recognize when someone either is or isn’t
cool, even though we might not be able to come up with defining terms. I
can, however, do some opinionated listifying.
To me, some of the coolest SA band names are Squeal, Sugardrive, Falling
Mirror (trés cool), Just Jinger, éVoid, Ella Mental, The Electric Petals,
and Wonderboom — these are catchy, inspired, and neat, neat, neat. There
are also Tweak, Sons of Trout (good one!), & The Pressure Cookies. These
clever names suggest creativity and provoke curiosity.
Even Four Jacks and a Jill has a certain panache. If you disagree with
that, then at least you might agree that one gets an idea of their musical
style from their name.
Speaking of style, I can’t think of Battery 9 having any other name — Paul
Rickert and the Four Batteries? Nah. Battery 9, especially as pronounced in
Afrikaans, echoes that B9 sound: tough and uncompromising.
Rabbitt is a catchy name, and now whenever I think of dassies, now that I
know what a dassie is, I think of rock rabbitts. Rabbitt is a cute and cool
name, and their pop idol image and rock music ranges from cute to cool, too.
Ballyhoo is a name as cool as The Smithereens. Radio Rats, like the unique
Radio Rats music, works for me. The Dream Merchants sounds good, too, from
wherever they took the inspiration for it (Dylan, or a science fiction

Girl groups often name themselves in a way that lets the world know they
are female musos (musas?), even though they may play pure and inspired
rock, not ‘It’s My Party’ pop. South Africa’s girl groups do this, too.

Little Sister, Peach and Clout — even though the names are only one or two
words, these are punchy names.

What about Johnny Kongos? You don’t make up a name like that, and he
didn’t. “Kongos” even carries a musical hint in its coolness. Johnny
Kongos is also a name that worked well both with the rock ‘n’ roll of
Johnny Kongos and the G-Men and with the solo-artist-with-friends rock he
later created using African rhythms.

As long as I’m on the subject of singers’ names, Quentin E. Klopjaeger
might not be loaded with chic allure, but it certainly is memorable.
Though one can’t always see the Forrest for the stage names, right?
Speaking of cool and individual names, is not Valiant Swart a cool name? It
takes one with a certain élan to live up to a name like “Valiant”, and
Valiant sure has it. Yet it takes another sort, or size, of cojones to
answer in a manly voice to Kombuis. And the great Koos has just the voice,
and the cojones, for that.

On the other hand, some names don’t work well for me as cool names, while
their music does work as cool. Springbok Nude Girls is one of those bands.
And Suck. What kind of a crude band name is that? It’s not cute like
Rabbitt, not expressively aggressive like Jack Hammer. I’ll understand
better when Retro Fresh releases the Suck CD “Time To Suck’ because I
suspect Suck’s hard rock is well-matched by their blunt name.

Some names are neither swashbuckling nor milquetoast. Here, the performers
make the appellation mean something to listeners. I’m thinking of the great
David Kramer, of Saron Gas, and of Bedrock (though Bedrock gets points for
the use of “rock” in a name that suggests rock fundamentals).
Back to the rarified atmosphere of the cool, Freedom’s Children, with or
without the possessive apostrophe, is a name perfectly of the times from
whence the band sprung. Though firmly of an era, the name Freedom’s
Children, like their music, remains cool.

Among the modern bands, Beeskraal is a perfect naam for those ous.
Karen Zoid — Karen, and that surname, catches one’s eye. And the
whimsical Fruit Fly Navigators? I like it.

Of course, we’re here for the music and we know that names are just
handles. Nonetheless, there are a number of cool handles attached to SA
music. I’ve left out hundreds, and I imagine that you, cool reader, have
been mentally making your own list as you have read this.

When I see a cool name on a CD, it makes me curious about the music
within. One may not be able to judge a band by its name, or by its cover
art, but the name might make a buyer stop to look at the CD. However, the
second CD will have to be sold by musical content, and, if you’ll note,
most of the artists above have sold many CDs….