I felt a little bit older when I realised that it has been 10 years since Fokofpolisiekar released Swanesang, their last full length album up to date in 2006, but I was very happy when a little bird told me that they have plans to celebrate this in 2016.
2006 was the year that Fokofpolisiekar released the Brand Suid-Afrika EP, was caught amid a ravaging media storm and recorded Swanesang at B Sharp Studios in Boksburg. Their drummer, Jaco “Snakehead” Venter jumped out of the band’s tour van and broke his arm. Justin Kruger had to temporarily replace him. It was 100% rock ‘n roll chaos.
Die Bende released Swanesang and felt driven to the point where they had to call a hiatus or call it quits. The culturally and historically significant imprint they were making was the furthest thing from their minds as they were individually trying to figure out their way forward.
‘’2003 – 2006 was a crazy roller-coaster ride. None of us were ready for how intense the ride was going to be. The touring and endless parties started taking its toll. We had to make a decision. Now, 10 years later, I can confess that we made the right one. The 8 months break we took in 2007 was the best move we as a band could have made,’’ says Wynand Myburgh, manager and bassist of Fokofpolisiekar.
It is ten years later and the Fokofpolisiekar influence has spread to the inception of popular and award winning bands, aKING, Die Heuwels Fantasties, Van Coke Kartel and Francois van Coke’s successful solo career. The band continues to be celebrated in books, documentaries, movies and more.
Most importantly they remain intimately connected. Not just as a band, but also in business: Wynand Myburgh manages Francois van Coke’s solo career. Hunter Kennedy is part label owner at Supra Familias which released Francois’ debut solo album. Johnny de Ridder is regularly involved with producing songs for the Die Heuwels Fantasties and Francois Van Coke. Jaco “Snakehead” Venter has established himself as a band photographer and is the Fokof Lager brand manager.
The spirit of Fokof thrives as they continue to deliver the best live experience and reinforce their legacy by releasing crowd pleasers such as Fokof Lager on tap and vinyl editions of their musical releases. 2016 sees the official release of the Swanesang vinyl in July, a banging tour, fun competitions, and hopefully solving the mystery of how Johnny de Ridder doesn’t appear to age.
Swanesang is a 12” 180 grams vinyl in a gatefold sleeve. The vinyl itself is white packaged in a black polybag. Only 500 vinyl were produced and will be available on the #swanesang10 Vinyl Launch Tour and from the Fokofpolisiekar website towards the end of July.
From July 2016 Die Bende will be running monthly competitions and #fokoflager fans will stand the chance to will all kinds of cool prizes. In June fans stand the chance to win a signed Fokof Lager light box. In July it will be the complete Fokofpolisiekar vinyl collection (4 x vinyls: As Jy Met Vuur Speel Sal Jy Brand, Lugsteuring, Monoloog in Stereo and Swanesang).
To Enter for the June competition: Fans can post a picture of themselves enjoying a #fokoflager, in front of the signage of the bar they’re visiting, to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and use the hashtags #fokofenwen and #fokoflager. #fokoflager is only sold to people over the age of 18, so you will have to be 18 to enter. Winners to be announced on Fokofpolisiekar’s social media at the end of June, so check out their Facebook page, follow @fokofband or @fokofpolisiekar on Instagram.
Fokof Lager is available at: Capital Craft (PTA), Lucky Rodrigo (PTA), Van Hunks (CT), Honey Badger (CT), Redemption Burgers (CT), Jamaica Me Crazy (CT), Gastao’s (Durbanville), RocoMamas (Durbanville), RocoMamas Okavango (Kraaifontein), Aandklas (Stellenbosch), Craft Wheat & Hops (Stellenbosch), The Fat Butcher (Stellenbosch), Thirsty Scarecrow (Stellenbosch), The Cafe Racer (Somerset-West), The Station Pub (Franschoek), Rattle & Hum (PE), Beer Shack (PE), Chingada’s (PE), The Bru Bar (PE), St Ives (Kwazulu-Natal), Good Luck Bar (JHB), Hell’s Kitchen (Mellville), Fires (Rustenburg), Texas Saloon (Potchefstroom), Mystic Boer (Potchefstroom), RocoMamas (Potchefstroom), RocoMamas (Klerksdorp), No 16 Stoep (Bloemfontein).
The decision on who wins will be a random choice made by the band members. Try and entertain the members and stand a better chance.
The Jägermeister Presents #Swanesang10 Vinyl Launch Tour kicks off this Friday at Firkin Pub in Centurion. This will be Fokofpolisiekar’s last performance at this iconic venue before they move to a new location in Pretoria. Patrons of this show will be the first to get hold of the Swanesang vinyl.
You can also catch Die Bende live at Innibos Festival in Nelspruit on the 1st of July, at Aandklas Stellenbosch on the 20th of July, at Mystic Boer, Potchefstroom on the 21st of July, at Trademarx in Pretoria on the 22nd of July, at Mystic Boer in Bloemfontein on the 23rd of July, at the Assembly in Cape Town on the 5th of August and at Oppikoppi on the 6th of August.
Watch this space for regular updates in the Music category on Running Wolf’s Rant.