Rudiments in South African ska: The Rudimentals

By Kathleen Deane

Seven instruments accompanied by the true ska vocals of local South African, Teboho Maidza form a nationally renowned rhythmic and dynamic group, The Rudimentals; this born and bred band from Cape Town is known around the country as well as internationally for their African influenced ska-reggae sounds.

The many instruments such as the keyboard, saxophone, trombone, trumpet, lead and bass guitar to name a few, complement each other perfectly in such a compilation. Each musician absorbed in not only his own instrument but also with his fellow band members and the audience. The lively lead singer, Maidza is not only an eye pleaser but also an entertainer which takes away from the odd inability to understand the lyrics he produces.

Kirstenbosch Summer Sunset Concerts are host to a number of local bands, each year the performance by The Rudimentals is eagerly anticipated by families and teenagers alike; their performance is always uplifting and they get the crowd ???skanking??? at the stage by the first song; followed by the entire crowd by the last. The band usually plays a combination of their two albums: More Fire and Set it Proper, both albums expressing a unique ska-reggae sound.

There has been many occasion where myself and other members of the audience have been pulled up onto stage to ???skank it up??? with lead singer Maidza and the rest of the band; absorbing the energy from their most loved song, Radio Skaweto. Mesmerising the crowd with his long swaying dreadlocks, Errol Strachnan, otherwise known as Bong, reveals cavernous notes with his bass guitar.

The Rudimentals have not been very active this year but their fans hope to hear from them soon.  A new album is long overdue. The band is not set to play at Kirstenbosch this year which will be quite a disappointment to many fans that have experienced their vibrancy and summery feel in previous years. The band is currently signed to international record label, Moon Ska World, which has exposed them locally and internationally, however fans eagerly await their return to the South African music scene.

The band has a ripened nuance within their performances; their members consisting of a carpenter as well as a chemical engineer; their connection being a simple love for an African, ska-reggae compilation that produces The Rudimentals. The band???s website provides updates on performances as well as the music video filmed at Kirstenbosch in 2007.
You may even be able to find yourself on the Youtube video.

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