Newman at the Mill

2013-10-15 00:00

LEGENDARY acoustic guitarist Steve Newman is hard at work on a new release titled All Living Beings, which he says is flavoured with “herbs and spices from Cape to Cuba, Africa to Asia, the Caribbean to the Canary Islands”.

Born in Cape Town, Newman has travelled the length and breadth of South Africa and around the world, delighting audiences with his ability make the guitar sing.

On Saturday, fans in the Midlands will get to see a bit of that magic when he performs at Caversham Mill Restaurant in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands.

Newman is possibly best known for being a member of the Tananas, which brought him international recognition, thanks to appearances on Peter Gabriel’s Womad platform and at other festivals in the United Kingdom, Sweden, France, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Spain, the Canary Islands, Australia and the United States.

The group also won a string of awards for their albums.

Newman continues to perform with other musicians. He’s shared the staged with musicians from the late Syd Kitchen to Tony Cox; and admits to loving the creative process of collaboration.

“Meeting other musicians on the road leads to collaborations,” Newman says.

“I play with Pretoria trio In the Clouds, the Cape Town trio All in One, The Aquarian Quartet, the Tananas minus Gito Baloi, who died in 2004, the Road Warriors with Cox, Jika Nelanga with Lu Dlamini, and in a new trio with Errol Dyers and New York singer Angel Rose.”

Newman has just returned from touring the United Kingdom with the Drummers of Burundi. They performed 13 concerts and he says of the experience, which also saw him sharing the stage with Zimbabwe’s Chartwell Dituro: “It was wonderful.”

As for what and who continues to inspire him to create music, he cites Egberto Gismonti, Toumani Diabate, Abdullah Ibrahim, Ladysmith Black Mambazo and other world-music artists as key influences.

The Caversham Mill Restaurant is fast growing a reputation for attracting quality acoustic sessions to the Midlands. Guy Buttery, Nibs van der Spuy, Albert Frost, Rodney Branigan, Laurie Lavine, John Ellis and Ard Matthews have performed at the picturesque venue. Tickets to see Newman perform on Saturday are R85. Lunch will be served from 11.30 am and the music will get under way at 2.30 pm.

Booking is essential as seats are limited. E-mail cavershammill@mweb.co.za or phone 033 234 4524 or 033 940 0145.

• arts@witness.co.za

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