DANIELLE LE PLASTRIER & LISHA DU PREEZ
And so begins a weekend full of bands, thorns, dust, thorns, music, thorns and fun. Did I mention thorns? If you can handle (and even enjoy) getting down and dirty, using smelly, portable toilets and drinking A LOT, then OppiKoppi was the place for you to be during the long weekend of August 7-9.
This festival has been running for 15 years. Its popularity and contribution to South African music was finally honoured when it was declared a national monument on Saturday, August 9. The theme for this year was smoorverlief, and the people really showed it towards OppiKoppi this year. The crowd was buzzing with fans and the atmosphere was better than ever; so was the entire set-up of the festival.
Four stages, a flea market, food stalls, a beer- tent and a smokers’ tent occupied the grounds of this event situated just outside Northam. Even though there was not one boerewors roll for sale anywhere, this fiesta which is, in the words of Piet Botha, “synonymous with promoting South African music”, still lived up to all our other expectations.
Perdeby had the chance to catch up with twelve of the amazing acts that were performing here. These included some legendary icons, some up-andcoming talents and others so hot that they’re currently burning up the South African music scene. This is what they had to say …
What makes OppiKoppi different from other festivals? Wat maak OppiKoppi anders as ander feeste?
aKING: Dis in Thabazimbi (die Bosveld). Die vibe is gevestig en dis ook ‘n Mekka vir Suid-Afrikaanse underground pop – die enigste met sy eie heritage site.
Taxi Violence: The Bosveld, the people, the dust and the thorns. The vibes are always good and you can dance in a cat suit at the top bar.
Tidal Waves: Where, at other festivals, people just want to come and get f*cked, this crowd is more into the music.
Shadow Club: It’s rough and wild bundubashing. The people are more peaceful – they can get along and have a laugh.
How has the festival changed since the first time you played here? Hoe het die fees verander vanaf die eeste keer wat julle hier gespeel het?
DJ Bob: The Sipho Gumede stage has grown.
Fokofpolisiekar: Dis dieselfde, behalwe dat ons nou in bungalows bly.
Tidal Waves: We’ve grown older in the last 11 years. Crowd management is better…
Jack Hammer and friends: It has grown in numbers, in its first year there were only 2000 people.
Battery 9: The organisation.
What did you want to be when you were growing up? Wat wou jy word toe jy ‘n kind was?
Ree-burth: It was my passion to become a radio personality then the guitar came along.
DJ Bob: I always wanted to change the world, be president. Now, through music you can change society, so I’ve achieved more than I ever wanted.
Kidofdoom: Gynaecologist: I’d never get bored looking at that. Or Michael Jackson.
Battery 9: A marine biologist or a pornstar. It was a toss up between the two. The guy standing at the back of the rubbish truck throwing the rubbish in – it looked so cool and he was getting a free ride.
Top things to do on your bucket list? Top dinge wat jy wil bereik voor jy die emmer skop?
aKING: Skydive on acid through the Northern Lights. Kiss Zooey Deschanel. Teleport like aliens.
Taxi Violence: Wrestle a crocodile. Go to Antarctica. See Led Zeppelin in the 60’s… No, invent a time machine, go back to the 50’s and write all the songs that got famous.
Tidal Waves: Contribute to changing people’s way of thinking. Buy my own farm and cattle. Play in Jamaica at a reggae festival – I could die sweetly after that. Get a girlfriend – one that can play guitar.
Battery 9: Avril Lavigne, Pink en Gwen Stefani. Write a science fiction novel about the rubbish truck.
Any interesting talents/hobbies that are non-music related? Enige interessante talente/stokperdjies behalwe musiek?
DJ Bob: Photography.
aKING: Being in a band, your hobbies are drinking and eating at restaurants.
Wrestlerish: Gavin can sing Muslim prayers. [Does a very authentic rendition of the Namaz].
Shadow Club: Acting, painting, yoga….
Zebra & Giraffe (Z&G): I can’t sh*t if I don’t burp first. Finger-painting. Battery 9: [Giggling]. Yodel. Make a mean mielie pap. Pleasure myself orally.
What would you do with your last R20? Wat sou jy met jou laaste R20 doen?
Wrestlerish: Buy a roti from Johnny’s in Durban.
Kidofdoom: Laughing gas.
Z&G: Buy Grandpas and snort them.
Jack Hammer: Give it to the guy at the gate.
Three things you would take to OppiKoppi if you could take nothing else? Drie goed wat jy na OppiKoppi toe sou vat as jy niks anders kon vat nie?
aKING: Lighter, gun, toilet paper and sunglasses.
Taxi Violence: Beer, beer, beer. Long johns, thermal vest and a woman. Six-pack condoms [only six?], braai wood, Panados.
Wrestlerish: Blanket, hubbly [spot the kids from Pretoria], toilet paper.
Tidal Waves: Ganga, condoms, a hat and friends to take care of you when you get drunk.
Z&G: Roll-on (‘cause you can’t borrow someone else’s), money. Knife, gun, rope. [What about the candlestick?].
Jack Hammer: Guitar, good Swaziland tobacco and Cuervo.
Strangest thing to ever have been attacked by at OppiKoppi? Die snaaksste ding wat jou al ooit by OppiKoppi aangeval het?
Taxi Violence: A guy in a catsuit.
Fokofpolisiekar: Monkeys and a little guy fucked on pills.
Tidal Waves: A guy with a ‘100% boer’ shirt on.
Kidofdoom: Diarrhoea from the port-a-potty.
Z&G: A drunk Natasha Baxter… ‘Cause she loves us so much.
Battery 9: The Easter bunny – but like the one from Donnie Darko.
Descibe your music in five words? Beskryf jou musiek in vyf woorde?
Fokofpolisiekar: Howzit, howzit, howzit, howzit, cheers.
Wrestlerish: Country-ish, fun-ish, sexy-ish, Kwela Pop-ish, unrehearsed-ish.
Tidal Waves: Original music for original people.
Shadow Club: Rock, booze, energetic, hallucinogenic, sexy-dirty-orgasms.
What does it feel like when you’re smoorverlief (crazy in love)? Hoe voel dit as jy smoorverlief is?
Taxi Violence: Awesome, it’s the greatest feeling on earth. It’s the feeling a man gets when he wakes up in the morning. Liefde het baie gesigte.
Fokofpolisiekar: Ek is smoorverlief op Jack Parow en die slange op sy tiete.
Wrestlerish: Love is a chemical imbalance of the brain. I had it with Jack Parow.
Kidofdoom: Dit voel amper soos MDMA. Om te verdrink in liefde.
Shadow Club: Oh, I thought you said ‘smurf a leaf’!
Z&G: You feel like everything’s gonna be okay.
Jack Hammer: Om jouself heeltemal te verloor in iemand. Feeling like you are 16 again.
*The answers here are the general opinions of the band members and not necessarily that of one individual.