Liefde By Die Dam Cape Town: Valiant Swart Interview

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Valiant Swart is one of the artists who will be performing at Liefde By Die Dam Cape Town 2018 on the 17th of November. The event is almost sold out. It will be held at the Meerendal Wine Estate in Durbanville.

I recently had a chat to Valiant Swart about Liefde By Die Dam Cape Town 2018 and a few other things. This is what he had to say.

Valiant Swart

What can fans expect from Valiant Swart’s set at Liefde by die Dam?

When it’s just a 40min festival set, it’s best to stack it with some proper boogie tunes. So – we’re gonna rock, top to bottom.

How long have you been performing and was there a defining moment along the way in which you realized that you can actually make music your career?

On a Wednesday night in December 1989 I played a pub gig at the Kimberley Hotel in Cape Town for R100 cash and a few free drinks. That settled it for me. It’s been almost thirty years now.

How has the SA Music landscape changed over the years for you?

I’m astonished at the abundance of talent and creativity out there. I find it inspiring and challenging and entertaining all at once. Concerning the music biz… well, it’s still overrun with pimps and thieves, to paraphrase Hunter S. Thompson, but I give them a wide berth. I avoid the industry as far as I can. I do my own thing, it works better for me.

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How easy / hard is it to drive the business side of things as an independent artist?

I’m fortunate to have built up a substantial following across all age groups over the years, so it’s sustainable for me. But it’s never easy. I’m in it for life, so I have to keep on my toes and keep busy. Fortunately, I love what I do.

How many songs have you written over the decades? And do you keep a record of all of them?

I’m not sure of the exact count… I’ve recorded 200-plus songs, and there are many more unfinished ones lying in the proverbial drawer.

We heard that there is a special story about the writing of your song “Songvanger” – will you tell us about it?

I wrote “Sonvanger” after the tragic suicide of a very young musician. I wrote it with his mother in mind. The song has since taken on a life of its own; it seems to have brought comfort to a lot of bereaved people, which, to be honest, makes me feel real good.

Which songs were inspired by specific people / friends / family?

Many of the characters and subjects of my songs are based on very real people – sometimes close companions or family, sometimes complete strangers, sometimes a composite of archetypes. ‘People watching’ – and eavesdropping, I confess – provide rich pickings for lyrics.

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Valiant Swart, you are known as one of SA`s best lyric writers. Which of your lyrics were you most happy with at the time of writing it? (you know that feeling when you pen something and you don’t even know where it came from, it is just gold.)

I love that feeling! I’m hopelessly addicted to it – that euphoria of just having nailed a lyric , along with a tune that you just know is gonna kick ass… I’m a sucker for that. Especially when it just arrives out of the blue. One particular song that comes to mind is ‘Vloek van die kitaar’, which I wrote in one sitting, and which we will be moer-ing very hard at Liefde By Die Dam.

I’d like to thank Valiant Swart for this interview and I wish him all of the best with his set at Liefde By Die Dam Cape Town 2018 and his future musical endeavors.

Liefde by die Dam Cape Town

If you don’t have tickets to this show yet, get yours here. Die Heuwels Fantasties, Francois van Coke, Koos Kombuis, Sunset Sweatshop, Early B, Spoegwolf and Tarryn Lamb will also be performing.

Watch this space for regular updates in the Music category on Running Wolf’s Rant.


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