Rodriguez - An Introduction

"...maybe the Myth and the Mystery are now gone,
but the Music and the Memories will always remain..."

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Beginners start here...

His Music

His music is difficult to categorise as it fuses elements of Rock, Folk, Jazz, Soul, Blues and even Classical flourishes.Rodriguez is a singer-songwriter in the social commentary style of BobDylan, with the feel of the old Blues masters and even touches of Rockand Roll.

My inspiration comes from the environment and personal angst...each song is written to a theme...
- Rodriguez, March 1998
I've always concentrated on social issues, because I've always found it easiest to write about things that upset me. But I can (and have) explored the boy-girl theme in music and I enjoy writing ballads too.
- Rodriguez, March 1998

His sound is timeless and doesn't date... it still sounds fresh today.

RODRIGUEZ CDs The Current Situation (as at 25th May 2002 - subject to change without notice)

COLD FACT (1970) only the Australian pressing (with the white cover) is available. Amazon and HMV online both carry it. Available in most CD stores in South Africa for about R170.

COMING FROM REALITY (1971) / AFTER THE FACT (1976) South African pressing out of print and impossible to find. No other pressing exists.

AT HIS BEST (1977) Australian CD from 1986 (which includes 3 songs not on 'Cold Fact' or 'After The Fact') can be found online at Amazon and HMV and in some CD stores in South Africa.

THE BEST OF RODRIGUEZ (1982) South African version of 'At His Best' with more tracks is out of print. Impossible to find.

LIVE FACT (Live In South Africa) (1998) Released by SonyMusic SA, this CD can be found in almost all CD shops in South Africa and online from One World http://www.oneworld.co.za/productspecific.asp?AffiliateID=4321&ProductCode=cdcol5542. NOT available on Amazon or HMV.

ALIVE (Live in Australia 1979) (1981) Never released on CD.

Read more about all these albums here...

His Fanbase

Rodriguez has been a household name in South Africa since the early 70's. Thealbum Cold Fact has become a cult classic in South Africa, but unbelievablyRodriguez is unknown elsewhere (except maybe in Australia, New Zealand,Zimbabwe, and now Sweden!). He is never mentioned in any music magazines, rockencyclopedias or any other publications on the history of Rock. It was thissituation of an American artist being famous in South Africa, but unknown athome, that led me to set up this website. As one news headline said during the1998 SA tour: "American Zero, South African Hero".Through this website and the Internet I have discovered that Rodriguezalso has fans in Germany, Canada, Japan, England, Brazil, Norway and the USA.

His Influence

I've always been fascinated by his music and harshcomments on life. It is amazing to me that he never cracked the big-timeworld-wide. His influence on South Africans, especially the National Serviceguys in the 70s and 80s, has been profound. See the forumat The Great Rodriguez Website to read more comments (and add your own) onhow Rodriguez has affected and influenced so many lives.

Sixto Rodriguez -fifty-something-year-old failed Detroitpolitician and (in his own country)unknown singer songwriter - is part ofour shared cultural heritage. In the deadly SA '70s, his songs of harshpolitical complaint, of the power of sex and the lure of drugs, awoke somethingin untold thousands of young (white) breasts. He stoked rebellion and - whoknows - helped children of suburbia wake up to the need for change in their owncountry.
- Guy Willoughby, 9th March 1998

His Websites

Very little was known about him, and most people (including me) thought he wasdead! When I first started surfing the net in early 1997, one of the firstmusicians I looked for was Rodriguez. After finding nothing, I decided topublish my own site. I worked on my page for about a month and just before Iwas ready to publish, I found The Great Rodriguez Hunt website set up by SugarSegerman. I felt my site still had something to contribute, so on the 25thOctober 1997 the fledging Climb Up On My Music archive website was launched.

Since his rediscovery and live tour of South Africa in March 1998 this site hasgrown way beyond my original intentions or wildest expectations. On this site'sfirst birthday I gave it a complete overall in style and navigation. Maybe theMyth and the Mystery are now gone, but the Music and the Memories will alwaysremain.

Links

The Great Rodriguez Website. The first Rodriguez site on the Web and the home of The Forum.

One World. Buy any South African CD at One World, including 'Live Fact' which was recorded during his 1998 South African tour.

South Africa's Rock Files. The Online Archive for the History of South African Rock.

Amazon.com has the Australian pressings of Cold Fact and At His Best available for sale. Please note that "Swing Like A Metronome" is NOT by Sixto"Sugar Man" Rodriguez, but by some other artist with a similar name.

Yoni's Canadian Cold Fact Tribute page. Great site from a guy who knew nothing about Rodriguez, not even the songtitles on Cold Fact, but who loves his music.

All Rodriguez's CDs are catalogued at the CD Database (CDDB). If you play music CDs in your CD-Rom player whilst web-surfing, the fulltrack listing will be displayed on a special CD player. I use CD Max and it works very well. Quick to download, easy to use and free.

Vagabond's Music Links Page. The place to go if you're looking for general music trivia information and links.

Amuzine. If you want weekly updated music news, reviews and interviews with a South African flavour and a sense of humour try Sugar's on-line African MusicMagazine.

Thanks (For Your Time)

A huge number of people have contributed to this ever-growing website and thisis where I thank them.

My late mother, Joan, who never saw this website, but who encouraged andsupported my passion for music from an early age.

The Man himself, Rodriguez for making all our questions disappear (well, someof them anyway). When I met him in March 1998, he was very patient and answeredmy trivial questions about album release dates, musicians, etc. This site isdedicated to him for inspiring my passion (and obsession) for all thingsRodriguez.

Eva Alicia Rodriguez (his first-born daughter), who was incredible in sharingthe memories of her father and his music. She was instrumental in arranging theSA tour and it was a pleasure to meet her after months of e-mail correspondence.

Sandra Rodriguez-Kennedy (his second daughter), for her press clippings from theAustralian tour of 1979.

Regan Rodriguez (his daughter with Konny), for her laughter and the "Kool-Aid".

Konny Rodriguez (his second wife), for her memories of Rodriguez and theAustralian tours.

Stephen "Sugar" Segerman who helps with a great deal of theinformation on this site and who has become a special friend through our lovefor Rodriguez.

Mike Theodore, 'Cold Fact' producer and co-composer of 'Hate Street Dialogue' and 'Gommorah'.

Gary W Harvey, co-composer of 'Hate Street Dialogue' and 'Gommorah'.

Darin Harvey, for putting me in touch with his father, Gary.

Graham Stewart for his original Cold Fact vinyl album information.

Shaun Millin for information about Rodriguez releases in New Zealand.

André Bakkes for having an original vinyl copy of Coming From Reality.

Craig Bartholomew for being a "music detective" and finding Rodriguez.

Wendy Slade for typing most of the lyrics and re-typing some of the magazineand newspaper articles.

Rob Otto for the chords to Hate Street Dialogue.

Anna Gerber for information about Australian releases.

Louis Pienaar for guitar chords for 5 Cold Fact songs.

Desmond for the scan of the back cover of Alive.

Ray Taylor for the scan of the Cold Fact "white" album.

Mandy Currin who re-typed the USA Today article.

David Viljoen for introducing Craig Bartholomew to the music of Rodriguez (on8-track, yet!) and for having an original vinyl copy of After The Fact and a1973 cassette of Cold Fact.

Toshio Nomura from Japan for info and cover scans for the original 1971 USrelease of Coming From Reality.

Rui de Sousa from Sony Music SA who supplied me with an advance release of LiveFact a month before official release. He also he included this website address inthe sleeve notes of the CD.

Chris Venter from PolyGram South Africa for various bits of information aboutRodriguez releases.

Barbara Walker and the girls from Rainbow Productions for VIP tickets,backstage passes, posters, etc.

Nigel Walsh from the UK for the cover scan of the 1972 SA release of ComingFrom Reality.

Mattias Bylund for info on the June 1998 Swedish tour.

Tonia Selley from Big Sky and The Pressure Cookies for all her info on theBlues Room concerts and for making the TV documentary of the SA tour.

Theunis Engelbrecht for reviews and info.

Bruce Hopkins for some guitar chords.

Andrew Bond for his Cold Fact retrospective review, written especially forthis site.

David Hutchison for chords to Lifestyles and Halfway Up The Stairs.

Gavin Kelly and Jerry Schollenberger for info on the 1967 single release ofI'll Slip Away

Warren for info on the Australian Cold Fact music book.

Kevin Carhart for info on The Family Dogg's The View From Rowland's Head albumfeaturing cover versions of Rodriguez tracks.

John Samson for the scan of the 'Alive' album.

Kurt Shoemaker for copies of 'I'll Slip Away' (1967) and Monkeywrench's version of 'Sugar Man'.

Jim Haynes for spotting the missing lyrics in 'Establishment Blues' - "Can you pass the Roshach test?"

David Stodel, for the videos

Daniel Dennis, for the Cold Fact Songbook

Jeff Smith, for info on Australian singles

...and everyone else who has contributedin some way to this site or added their messages to the Forum.

Comments

Some people have said some very nice things about this site so in a fit ofself-indulgence here are some quotes:

You really have done some outstandingwork on your web site. I really appreciate it (Eva)

...the updates are fantastic and I love the music you've added... (Annafrom Oz)

It's one of my frequently visitedsites lately and I congratulate you on having one of the very few siteson the www, with information about the great man. (Andrew from UK)

What a great site, great achievement.VERY VERY interesting. All I can say is that I am impressed. (André)

Well done on a well-structured (consistentlytoo) web site. (Craig)

...you are doing a great job...keepup the good work, keep us informed. (Jeanine)

...brilliant work (Stephen)

Your site is just wonderful... (Sugar)

...it's great (Toshiaki from Japan)

Thanks for the site on the web -I LOVE IT!!! (Micci)

Truly amazing (Eva)

Thanks for your time...stay bent(Sixto)

Great site (Rui)

I love your site (Shauna)

We love your site - keep it up (Kolieand Megan from Washington DC)

If you enjoy Brian's site as muchas I do then you have to keep reloading it every chance you got becausehe updates it faster then you can read it (Yoni from Canada)

..thank you for all the work you do to keep the dream colourful (Chad andCamilla from Gothenburg, Sweden)

..your site was just totally amazing. Thanks again and again for themind-blowing page!! (Jason)

Thanks for all your hard work to keep us updated on Rodriguez. (Theunis)

I was really surprised (and pleased!!) to find your Web site. Thanks for allyour work - it must have taken you ages to collate all this information on suchan enigmatic person but the results are fantastic (Greg from Oz)

Thanks for all the effort... (Craig from UK)

What a great website. Keep up your excellent work on this site!! (Craig)

Thanks for a very good home page (Magnus from Sweden)

A superb job well done!! I love this site... (Johan)

You have done a superb job... (Konny from Detroit)

The new website looks excellent. I think the Web architecture is great, easy touse and well defined (Alan)

Just had a look at the Vagabond and Rodriguez sites and what can I say... I'mimpressed. I think it looks great and I like the feel of the navigation. Welldone!! (John)

Want to congratulate you on your wonderful Rodriguez site, it is really great(Peter from Zambia)

I play the guitar, and to get the real chords/tabs/lyrics blew my mind.... Greatsite. (Henning from Norway)

I just wanted to commend you on thequality of the site and it's content. (Danny from Australia)

First may I say that I think your Web Site is excellent... (Jeanette fromAustralia)

Disclaimer:
All previously published articles, images and sounds appearing on this site arereproduced here, in a non-profit forum and manner, for the purposes ofresearch, comment and criticism. Credit is given wherever possible for newsreports, photos, lyrics, songs, etc. Please advise of any omissions.

Site design and concept ©Brian Currin 1997-2001.

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