This past weekend I attended Parklife 2015 in Johannesburg at Marks Park. It was the third time that I made my way to this glorious venue and I must admit that I had a ton of fun (even though my legs were not functioning 100% the next day). I arrived at the venue early with fellow Grind Radio DJ Cameron around 10 AM. Finding parking and getting our tags was a breeze. There was ample parking space and the parking attendants knew what they were doing – they stopped people from parking like douche bags (and that’s a good thing in my books).
In March I was selected to #CreateWithCanon. They gave me the pocket-friendly Canon Powershot SX 600 HS to use and snap images / videos to showcase the quality that this amazing tiny camera delivers – a perfect tool to capture my memories at Parklife 2015. The photos in this article were snapped with this camera’s Creative Shot Mode. Pretty damn impressive. Don’t worry, you’ll see what I mean.
We made our way through the gates in time to catch the first act of the day, Johnny Apple. I’m not a huge fan of this bloke’s music, but there were plenty of young teenage girls who were (possibly because they saw him at the One Direction concert). Next up were upcoming Durban based rock act, Yorke (featuring 2013 Converse Get Out Of The Garage Winner Jordi Van Dyk). It was the first time that I saw this band and I have to admit that I was impressed. They’re bringing out an EP soon, so make sure that you get your grubby little music-loving paws on it.
Marks Park started filling up slowly but surely and before you knew it, Jesse Clegg was jamming on the Orange Stage. He impressed the crowd with his acoustic tunes and well-executed cover of Massive Attack’s “Teardrop”, helping the stunning sunny Jozi day to pick up its pace. Connell Cruise was up next, attracting the same girls that watched Johnny Apple at the Park Stage. I have to say that he does have a good voice, but this was not my cup of musical tea. I was patiently waiting for the bigger acts to make their appearance.
Next my time was divided between The Kiffness, Kahn (from the Parlotones) and Monark. I just followed the music and ended up spending the most time at Monark’s set. I’ve heard a lot about these guys and watching them perform live was quite a pleasure. I don’t have a crystal ball, but I’m envisioning big things for them in the near future.
I enjoyed an ice cold beer while listening to Jimmy Nevis with one ear, before heading off to watch Gangs of Ballet. These Durban blokes did not disappoint, bringing their A game and getting the crowd to sing along to their songs before someone could utter the words “One Sweet World”. I’m really excited to hear what their upcoming album will sound like and I’m pretty sure that those who attended Parklife 2015 are too.
I made my way the Arch to get my PH Fat fix and I was amazed. They really got the crowd going, playing songs like “Kill The Universe” and “Jump Motherf****r and even apologizing for the “foul language” they were using on stage during their set (it was a Sunday and there were little kids after all).
It was a bit of a frisk walk, but I made way to the Orange Stage in time to catch and photograph American Authors. I have to admit that I am not familiar with their music at all, but they put on one hell of the show. It didn’t take them too long to win the love of the crowd and pull one hell of a energetic and vibey set out of their musical bag of awesomeness.
Next up on the Park Stage was Jeremy Loops. He pulled one of the biggest crowds at Parklife 2015 and had the crowd dancing and singing along to his tunes in no time. It was great seeing parents with their kids on their shoulders and everyone just having an extremely good time. I must admit that seeing him with a full band (which included Mr Sakatumi on bass) was also rad.
Next up were SA Music legends Prime Circle. It was the first time that I watched them perform in almost 3 years and I must say that they still have it. They played a lot of songs of their newer albums, but it was a real treat hearing them play “Hello” (the song that rocketed them to popularity more than 10 years ago).
It starting getting quite cold in Johannesburg as the sun went down, but it not stop the crowd from gathering in front of the Park Stage for the Parklife 2015 main international headliner, Modest Mouse (from the USA). I have to admit that I only knew 2 songs on their set list, but these okes completely blew me away. Watching them pull off an epic set was the perfect way to end this amazing one day festival.
Kudos to Breakout Management and everyone else who was involved in organizing Parklife 2015 for pulling off well organized festival. There were enough toilets, enough food stalls and the bars ran pretty smooth as well. See you all at Parklife 2016.
The Canon SX 600 HS Powershot is a truly nifty and compact camera and I recommend it to every photographer who doesn’t want to carry around a huge DSLR camera that puts a lot of strain on their neck and back. Like Canon South Africa on Facebook or follow them on Twitter to keep in touch, share, learn and #CreateWithCanon.
Watch this space for regular updates in the Music and Photography category on Running Wolf’s Rant.