Review: Sowing the Seeds for Rocking the Daisies

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All aboard the Daisy Train. Once you get on, you won’t want to get off…
In nature, wind is a great factor in seed sowing. It’s a little more troublesome when the Sowing the Seeds in question is a music festival. And not just any festival but the taster for the first big annual festival of the summer-to-come, Rocking the Daisies.

But the organisers of this hugely popular event are not the sort of people to be put off by a mere south wester. Sure enough, the festival kicked off – a little behind schedule admittedly – with the whole stage, sound equipment, lights etc having been transferred from the field beside the farmhouse to the Bedouin tent between the farmhouse and the kids playground.

By the time we arrived the festival was in full swing with the melodic sounds of Jeremy Loops performing in the background. His act consisted of an improvised mixture of a harmonica, guitar and a loop pedal – mind-blowing. We then had time to dash to the well-organised and well-stocked bar while Rob Van Vuuren, one half of the infamous Corne and Twakkie comedy duo, kept the crowds amused during the breaks between musicians.

Next up was Hot Water. An eclectic mix of South African cultures and all the accompanying genres of music, this truly unique band had the crowd on their feet. Young and old were brought together by the culmination of afro-fusion beats. This was my first encounter with Hot Water, and I was filled with a patriotic ardour that took even me by surprise.

The tone had been set and the mass of people – the great majority of whom had arrived on the South African Breweries sponsored ‘Daisy Train’ from town – were partying up a storm. Although the wind occasionally conjured up a swirling storm of dust and leaves around us, it did little to deter our spirits.

With the elated screams of children playing on the swings and running through the bushes, dogs roaming hopefully between the picnic baskets and the hazy afternoon sun slowing preparing for descent, the electric ambience reverberated through the tree tops. There was a good variety of food on offer, but most people grazed lightly, preferring to keep their feet moving and their mouths closed against the wind.

And the party didn’t stop… The familiar sound of aKING’s lead singer, Laudo Liebenberg, projected across the festival with infectious rock ballads that immediately had the audience engaged and the die-hard fans lined up in the front, totally in their element.

With the crimson sun disappearing and James Copeland setting up in the background, I was a little envious of those carefree souls who would catch the train home, but it was time for me to leave. I headed out along the dusty road with a feeling of satisfaction and a new found appreciation of festivals. If Sowing the Seeds is anything to go by, Rocking the Daisies is going to rock your socks off. Consider those seeds well sown.

Sowing the Seeds 2011 took place at the Cape Farmhouse in Scarborough on 16 April.

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