'Amuzed' - 19/12/97

stephen is 'amuzed' beatspeak

"Deck the halls with brows of Vaalies,
tralalalala lalalala
'Erbs from Durbs and Cape Town Dwaalies,
tralalalala lalalala
'Tis the season to be Jaalie (or maybe just Amuzed…)"

Hello, Ho Ho!

I can't believe it. Another year has flown by. I've been sitting in this little dark cubicle with my PC, music system and Terry Waite poster on the wall, banging out a rhythm on my keyboard and trying to meet my music and sports article deadlines. I don't remember what the sun looks like except that it's this yellow colour and makes my skin red and flaky if I get exposed to it. My editor tapped me on the shoulder and told me that it was time again for me to take my obligatory two weeks' leave. He also gave me a small fancy-wrapped gift. Last year he lent me this Fender Stratocaster guitar which I used to pose for my picture above. Afterwards he said I could keep it for my Christmas present, so I'm keen to see what he got for me this year. Great! It's a set of strings for the guitar and he's promised me that next year he'll give me the connection to plug the guitar in. What a prince he is!

So before I grab my bag and cozzie and head off for a quiet beach somewhere, I'd better scribble something to leave on the page for the next two weeks. Seeing as it's (almost) the end of a quality-rich music year, I thought I would list my favourite South African and international albums of the year so that you may be tempted to buy them for yourselves or for your good friends and relatives or pull them out of that barely-listened-to pile and give them another chance or be moved to email me to tell me either what great or terrible taste I have. I firmly adhere to the principle of "De gustibus non est disputandem", which basically means that there is just no accounting for taste, so this is what gave me ear-gasms this year and I'd be interested to see your lists.

So, in no particular order, my top 20 South African CDs of 1997:
· Springbok Nude Girls - Afterlifesatisfaction.
· Pops Mohamed - How far have we come?
· Oom - Beats and Peaces.
· Koos Kombuis - Madiba Bay.
· Fetish -- Fetish
· Sugardrive - Sand.Man.Sky.
· Paul Hanmer - Trains to Taung
· Elephant Sun - Perceptions.
· Magic Cactus - Things
· Just Jinger - All Comes Round
· Gito Baloi - Na Ku Randza
· Stimela - Out of the Ashes.
· Prophets of da City - Ghetto Code
· Lucky Dube - Taxman
· McCoy Mrubata - Tears of Joy
· Scabby Annie - Petroleum
· Ladysmith Black Mambazo - Heavenly
· Flying Circus - Favourite Jinx
· Tananas - Collection
· Get The Funk Out CDs volumes 1-5

…and my 20 favourite international albums of 1997:
1) Radiohead - OK Computer
2) The Verve - Urban Hymns
3) Bently Rhythm Ace
4) Material - Seven Souls
5) Nick Cave - The Boatman's Call
6) Soundtrack - When We Were Kings
7) Van Morrison - The Healing Game
8) Wilco - Being There
9) Ron Sexsmith - Other Songs
10) Bob Dylan - Time Out Of Mind
11) Supergrass - In It For The Money
12) Chemical Brothers - Dig Your Own Hole
13) Spiritualized - Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space
14) Primal Scream - Vanishing Point
15) Various - Great Jewish Music (a tribute to Serge Gainsbourg)
16) Soundtrack- Grace Of My Heart
17) Coolio - My Soul
18) Soundtrack - Jerry Maguire
19) St Germain -- Boulevard
20) U2 - Pop / Oasis - Be Here Now (a last place tie)

All of these fine CDs are available promptly and economically from One World online CD store. There are no new reviews this week so you can delve back into the old ones from 1997. The Dorp Lager Mentality is still worth a read as are the other interviews from this year. The Gig Guide has all the Cape live music action online and will be nationwide from next year. The return of the 'Sugar Man' looks to be a cold fact for early 1998 so keep your beadies on The Great Rodriguez Website for all the news and pictures.

So, thanks for clicking by to keep in touch with what's happening in the Rainbow music nation. We'll be back, tanned, strong and earwax-free to carry on in 1998. The ears and eyes of the world are focused on our cool democracy and they are still moer-of-a-interested in the variety of musical styles and funky beats that are pouring out of South Africa these days. I welcome all and any info and feedback concerning new SA bands, music, artists, albums and opinions. I can be contacted back here in 1998 in my dark, Dilbert-like dungeon at

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, Cool Channukah and the condiments of the season to you all. May we all be blessed with a peaceful, healthy, happy and music-filled 1998.

by stephen 'Sugar' Segerman

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