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"I have a theory that the true sound of South African rock and roll has been lost."

Gil Hockman

"THE last mix tape (CD, really) I made was for Valentine's Day. The coffee shop across the road (Wolves - www.wolves.co.za) was selling prepackaged blank CDs for Valentine's Day and a friend who had just arrived in town bought one and asked me to fill it up for her. So, in the spirit of the day, I tried to map out a love affair from first attraction to distant longing, getting it together, falling apart, leaving and picking up the pieces. You know?" asks Jo'burg-based solo musician (and also one fifth of band The Buckfever Underground). Gil has just released Too Early in the Journey which you can buy at the Wolves Online Shoppe.


GIL HOCKMAN - Gin & Juice (cover version)

Available on: Too Early in the Journey

Free MP3

MASON JENNINGS - If You Ain't Got Love

"I don't know why, but some songs just seem to jump out at you on first listen and demand that you listen to them 10 or 12 or 50 times in a row. I was making supper and I had my iPod on shuffle when If You Ain't Got Love came on. For a start, it's just a great sounding song, really nice finger picking, but I think it's the slight odd melody and rhythm of the chorus that caught my attention. And the content, it's just a really beautiful little picture of what it's like when it works out right."

Available on: Boneclouds

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" This song!!! It totally slays me. I heard it for the first time when I was watching the film The Boat That Rocked. There is a great scene in the movie when the wife of one of the DJs has just left him for one of the other DJs the day after they have gotten married and he is playing this song on his show and desperately singing along. The imagery is hilarious and heartbreaking at the same time. The soundtrack for the film as a whole is pretty unbelievable and when I downloaded it I discovered this song (and for some reason there are two versions on the soundtrack. Bonus! One from Lorraine Ellison and the other by Duffy). They just don't make music like this anymore. I could listen to this all day every day to make up for all the soulless pap that gluts up life these days."

Available on: The Boat That Rocked (Soundtrack)

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BOB DYLAN - When the Ship Comes in

"The live version from the soundtrack of Martin Scorsese's documentary, No Direction Home. A song about the day when the Goliaths of our world finally meet their match - with nature itself rising up in a glorious opposition to oppression and a performance with just vocals, acoustic guitar and harmonica that could conjure up anything from a mosh pit to a full-scale rebellion. It's Rage Against The Machine meets Shakespeare."

Available on: No Direction Home, Vol. 7 (Soundtrack)

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BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN - Working on the Highway

" This might be a bit more about the album than the song. Born In The U.S.A. must be a serious challenger for greatest rock album of all time - it plays with an energy that could decimate your speakers at any moment. Working on the Highway might not be the most well-known song next to the title track of the likes of I'm On Fire, but it has everything: its inescapable rhythm and super-sweet riff, the lyrics that carry a tale about being young and in trouble and a pace and melody that forces your elbows to the air and your feet to the floor."

Available on: Born in the U.S.A.

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UMAHLATHINI NABO - Qhude Manikiniki

"I have a theory that the true sound of South African rock and roll has been lost - both to the generic sounds of the USA and the UK, as well as to the turntables of kwaito, hip hop and house - and that if you want to find out what it really is, you need to go back to 1985 and take a listen to a compilation called The Indesctuctable Beat of Soweto. Apparently the compilation influenced Paul Simon to record Graceland. It provides a potent glimpse of what was around at the time. Qhude Manikiniki makes my blood boil in the best possible way."

Available on: The Indestructable Beat of Soweto

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BLK JKS - Zol!

"I actually got this song from a mix tape that my friend Paul made me for my drive from Jo'burg to Cape Town in December. In much the same way that Blk Jks tranformed Mzabalazo (a demo off the same EP) from protest song to rock monster, Zol! rides into your head on the back of a sick kwaito beat, heavy bass, atmospeheric guitar, townships and football stadiums. In a perfect world we would all be singing the lines 'zol after school' and 'I can run and shoot at the same time' at the cricket and rugby as well as at the soccer. "

Available on: Zol! (EP)

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"Billy Bragg is a total one of a kind. A one-man punk band who can switch with ease from singing in support of striking miners to reminiscing about the smell of an old girlfriend's hairspray. But before I met Billy Bragg, I met Kirsty MacColl's version of his song and fell in love straight away (it took me a while to believe that the song was not orginally McColl's - as it turned out, Billy Bragg actually wrote two extra verses for her version). The sound of this song is the best of '80s pop production - a momentus swirl of guitars, effects, synths, bass runs and key changes - and to top it all off there is MacColl's voice and Bragg's words 'I saw two shooting stars last night / I wished on them but they were only satellites / It's wrong to wish on space hardware / I wish, I wish, I wish you'd care'."

Available on: The Stiff Years

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