Mrs. B is a 5 piece Hard Rock band from Pretoria (the city I live in). They have been around for the past 4 years. Some of the members played in a cover band of the same name (but with different members). All the members are from South Africa with the exception of Pedro (who was born in Mozambique). Heine is the man behind the keyboards & synthesizers (and he’s also a member of Rhootz). Brad is behind the Drums (and plays only for Mrs. B).
Shawn is the guitarist and he used to session for a few bands but decided to give all his time to Mrs. B. Pedro is the vocalist and he’s also has his solo project called The Captain Barbosa Experience. Wouter plays for way too many bands including Dozi, Scicoustic, SADC and others. All of the members studied music.
Heine is currently busy finishing his course. Mrs. B have played at festivals like Vredefest, FORR & STRAB (in Mozambique), the Rotary Fest and the Vaal Makiti Fest. The band have shared stages with the likes of Prime Circle, The Parlotones, Evolver, Karen Zoid, Taxi Violence, Cassette, Dan Patlansky. Chris Cameleon, Fokofpolisiekar and many others. Mrs. B was supposed to open for Vanila Ice when he came down to South Africa. Unfortunately the gig got cancelled for some reason.
So far Mrs. B have recorded 2 albums. Only 800 copies were printed and sold of their debut album. Their second album, The Devil in You was just finished recently, and is only available online on the Rhythm Records website. Both albums are completely different. The Devil in You is more edgy and aggressive than their first album which was a more happy “I Love You” kinda thing and very sexual. Mrs. B does their recording at Wolmer records.
The band likes Lanie because he’s a character. The band must also admit that he helps the music industry by giving bands a chance to record in a quality studio for an affordable price. Mrs. B was named after Mrs Brummer (the head master at the College where Pedro, Wouter and Brad studied). When the guys got together in 2006 to record their first album they decided to keep the name from their cover band they had a few years earlier.
Mrs. B had passed away and she kick started their music knowledge, so it felt right at the time. The band’s current focus is going into their new album. They are putting everything into it. They’re not sitting and waiting for it to happen. They have to do something and prove themselves. And they will. Mrs. B is confident that their upcoming album is gonna be a great one.
You can catch Mrs. B live at Woodcrock at Cafe Barcelona (in Elardus Park, Pretoria) on the 28th of August, at the FORR music festival in Mozambique (from the 2nd to the 5th of September), at the Charity festival in Pretoria (which will feature bands like Mean Mr Mustard, aKING and Van Coke Kartel) on the 18th of September and the Faith Production launch on the 2nd of October in Hatfield Square in Pretoria.
I recently had the privilege to interview this great upcoming band. This is what they had to say…
What are your thoughts in general about the SA music industry?
Pedro: “The SA music industry is growing and i think in the past 5 years a lot more bands have come out and stood out… In terms of the Record companies I think that we still lack involvement from their side. I remember when I was in Los Angeles, the record companies would for example, go to the MI (or Musician’s Institute) and check the students out. They would go to gigs, etc. I don’t think I have ever seen an A&R at a gig. We have done Industry gigs where we invited record companies and they didn’t pitch… so I don’t really know how they work but it’s definately not the same has overseas. Due to the growth of bands in South Africa I think quality has taken a edge, which is cool, the quality of CD’s coming out has definately improved. But yeah, we still have a lot to grow…”
If you could pick a favorite local and a favorite international artist who would you choose?
Brad: “aKING and Queen”
Pedro: “Evolver and Black Cat Bones. Tough call on the International, don’t have particular band, but like songs by different bands but lately, Guns ‘n Roses”
Shawn: “Nul and Muse”
Heinie: “Rhootz and Megadeth”
If you could open for any international band who would that be?
“30 Seconds to Mars”
Are you guys typical rock stars or do you differ from most Rock bands?
A source who wishes to remain anonymous in the band told me that this depends on who you’re talking about in the band. He told me that “Brad has a kid so he is fucked… but he drinks like a Rock Star” and “Wouter is a whore in the industry who sessions a lot – so he is the closest to a Rock Star at the moment”. The source also told me that “Wouter is a whore in the industry, he sessions a lot, so he is the closest to a Rock Star at the moment..”, that “Shawn has mental problems, so he doesn’t qualify” and that “Pedro likes to wash dishes, so he is definately not a Rock Star”. He also said “At the gigs we live the style but at home I guess we’re all normal…”
What is the funniest or most embarrasing thing that ever happened while Mrs B was performing on stage?
“On our Cape Town tour Pedro had a girl rubbing his guitar on stage for quite a few songs, at least we hope it was his guitar! hahaha… at the end of the show she took pics with the guitar, pretty sexy stuff…”
“Pedro broke a stage, like literally went through the stage, the cool thing was he didn’t stop playing… The crowd and the band laughed their asses off…”
“Shawn went on stage once with a mini dress… after a bet on Facebook…”
Pedro: “One time we played a gig at Cool Runnings in Hatfield and we got free shooters on stage, from a guy called Bok van Blerk, so I made jokes about him being there watching us….I was a bit pissed…. and it turns out it was him… but he came after the show and said he liked the show, I felt like a dick, but he is a very cool guy and we talk every now and then…”
What defines a typical Mrs B gig?
“We like to have the crowd singing and partying it up with us and very rarely we don’t achieve just that. Our songs are very easy to catch up with so sometimes we get surprised with people singing a song we never played before…”
“We draw a lot of energy off each other and we forget in a sense we are on stage, so we do a few stupid things on stage, but we like it when the crowd feels part of the show, otherwise what is the point?”
What was the best gig you ever played, and why?
“New Year’s Eve in Hatfield Square in 2007. Over 10,000 people. We had just launched our new album but we were nowhere in terms of people knowing us, and we had played like 5 or 6 gigs before that, but we won a TUKS FM competition which gave us that slot… It was insane, the crowd response was really amazing and the name grew after that… We were pissed out of our minds though…”
What are you working on nowadays?
“Well, we are not doing any shows, since we recording the new album, SOLD OUT! It’s a double CD, 18 or 20 tracks (we’re still deciding)… It’s something a bit out there we know, but we feel we have to do it. We had 53 songs to choose for the new album and when we got to 24 songs we couldn’t choose 10 for the new CD so decided to take 20 or so. It’s gonna be quite a thing, one CD will be full rock and the other a softer version more Pop (if u wanna call it that), which is a side that Mrs. B has been exploring but never put out there, so this is a great opportunity. We should be done with it by October hopefully. The last album took a year! Hectic! This one we did pre-production since November 2009 and started tracking end July. We have big hopes for this album, and we will distribute it in stores as well as on the internet…”
Running Wolf’s Rant would like to take this opportunity to thank Mrs. B for the interview. It was a lot of fun writing this post. You can follow Mrs B. on Facebook for more updates. You might also want to check out the other interviews on the blog. The Music and Movies categories on this blog are regularly updated so feel free to check back for updates. Also feel free to comment on this post (or any other post on the blog) if you have any feedback.
*Band photos courtesy Sean Brand.