Oppikoppi 2014 Odyssey is approaching at an unstoppable pace and excitement is mounting for what promises to be one of the best festivals this year. Like I’ve mentioned in a previous post, I’ve decided to feature some of the photos that I’ve taken over the years to build excitement for this year’s festival, so this journey continues today…
In 2005 I attended Oppikoppi Wired. It was definately one of the best ones I’ve been to. I’ve seen my fair share of interesting T-shirts over the years at this festival. T-shirts with slogans like “Praat Afrikaans of Hou Jou Bek” (Meaning “Speak Afrikaans or Shut Up”) and “Hoekom? Want bier is goedkoper as petrol?” (Meaning “Why? Because beer is cheaper than petrol”) are not uncommon at Oppikoppi. This shirt was definitely one of the best ones I saw at that’s year’s festival though.
It was a very long weekend filled with excellent tunes, dust and lots of booze. This was also the year that Fokofpolisiekar played an acoustic gig at the festival (something that I featured in my previous post on this topic). I snapped this photo of the crowd under the trees at the main stage area on that same weekend. It hasn’t changed that much since 2005 if you ask me. Scenes like this are not uncommon at the festival.
Squeegies are quite popular at Oppikoppi. This wonderful plastic invention is spill proof and is easy to carry around. Since 2004 I’ve been buying the official Oppikoppi squeegies (and losing some of them afterwards). I snapped this photo when I was chilling around the campfire with some friends in the late afternoon at Oppikoppi 2005 Wired. I can’t remember if I had alcohol or water in it though.
In 2007 I attended Oppikoppi The Way of the Dassie. Jimmy Eat World, Groove Armada and Violent Femmes were the international acts performing on that particular weekend. Besides this there were plenty of local acts as well. One of them was Harris Tweed (who are now known as Dear Reader). They were definitely one of the best acts of the weekend and played at the acoustic stage at the top bar. I have fond memories of this stage. In 2004 Gert Vlok Nel was late for his set and the organizers filled the slot with a surprise gig featuring Karen Zoid, Rikku Latti and Andries Bezuidenhout performing covers of Johannes Kerkorrel songs. I snapped this photo of Harris Tweed while my friends and I were watching them perform in 2007.
At some point during the weekend we went to watch another artist perform at the top bar stage. As we sat down on the grass / paving to enjoy some alcoholic refreshments I snapped this photo of the sun setting as we were chilling out. Oppikoppi really has some stunning sunsets if you ask me.
I attended Oppikoppi 2009 Smoorverlief as well. Over the years I’ve seen and met interesting individuals at Oppikoppi. There’s one oke who greets me every time I’m there but I never see him at a different place (even though he also lives in Pretoria). There’s the girl who refers to me as “Moer Dronk” (translated as “Very Drunk”) when she runs into me at the festival (due to reasons I do not want to go into – it’s a long story). I’ve also found people lost in campsite sleeping next to our cozy fire on more than one occasion.
At this particular year’s festival there was a guy walking around in a Superman suit (whom I failed to photograph) and this dude, a guy that I refer to as “the spietkop”. He was directing people to spots around the festival and claiming to have the power to write out parking tickets (as far as I can remember). He was hard to ignore with his helmet and security vest.
I was strolling through the camping area (on my way to tent) at one point in 2009 when I snapped this photo. Scenes like these make me want to be one that farm right now, enjoying a cold one.
After watching Billy Talent play a brilliant show on the main stage in 2010 I made my way to the FHM stage to catch Afrikaans rockers Van Coke Kartel. It was definitely the best gigs that I’ve seen them play with Jason Oosthuizen on drums and Jedd Kossew on lead guitar. The crowd were singing along to most of their songs which made the atmosphere perfect.
After watching Scicoustic perform on the Levi’s stage at Oppikoppi 2010 we moved to the bar to get a cold one and then sat down on the grass patch in the shade of the thorn trees between the James Phillips Main stage and the FHM stage and we listened to Durban based Indie rock band Fire Through the Window playing on the FHM stage. I snapped these two photos.
One of the first Wrestlerish shows that I saw also went down at Oppikoppi 2010. I made sure that I (and everyone camping with me) did not miss this gig. I was sure that this was not a gig that should be missed by anyone. The crowd was signing along and the atmosphere was just simply amazing.
Canadian rock band Billy Talent were definitely one of the highlights in 2010. I snapped this photo of them performing on stage whilst standing amongst one of the biggest crowds I’ve seen at a Oppikoppi festival. I’m glad that returned to South Africa in 2013, but seeing them for the first time truly blew me away.
Jack Parow was the last act to perform on the Sunday night in 2010. He performed almost every song on his debut album and made some interesting statements during his show. At one stage he chanted “Fok Steve Hofmeyer” which was met by quite a cheerful reaction from the crowd. About every second car was playing his CD in the Oppikoppi camping area (including our own campsite) that year.
Well, there you have it. I hope you enjoyed my little trip down memory lane. Feel free to share this article with your music festival loving friends on Facebook and Twitter if you did.
Remember: Oppikoppi 2014 Odyssey will be held from the 7th to the 9th of August this year and remember to take one day off work if you really want to have a good time! General admission tickets cost only R700 per person and includes camping for the weekend. This offer is available on the Oppikoppi Facebook page or on www.plankton.mobi. Tickets are selling like hot cakes, so buy yours NOW, you don’t want to miss out on this festival if you love good music.
Watch this space for regular updates in the Music and Photography categories on Running Wolf’s Rant.