Africa, Countries, Culture

Rainy Days and Songdays – the Rhythm of South Africa

And I swear this happened…

There I was tapping my two index fingers on the table with All-4-One’s Alfred Nevarez on my first night in Port Elizabeth in South Africa.

Who knew that PE, as the locals call it, is an entertainment hub for international R&B acts?

Californian Alfred, or Alfza as his pals or lagered-up Scotsmen call him, was in fine form after bringing the house down in the hospitality suite with the band.

African adventures: With Mark, Isabel Conway and Rachel Lewis

And we, that’s me and esteemed and steamed Travel professional Mark Evans, had him telling us all about life on the road.

With the Grammy-winning band and the power of music.

Rhythm & Blues

A window onto Port Elizabeth

None of which I could possibly share, of course.

Because I was too far gone to remember any of it, and isn’t that always the way.

Truth is that it was great to get out back and sit by the fountain in the balmy weather.

And just spitball and talk about music we love.

Toto rubbish

African nights: In PE

With not one of us flagging the song ‘Africa’ by Toto.

Too obvious. Well, not to the Port Elizabeth hotel we were staying in who blared out the song morning, noon and night.

It didn’t take a lot to get me away from you, Toto.

But Alfred, I could have stayed longer than the two memorable hours we spent at the tip of Africa, just listening to your melodious and chilled tones.

And here’s a reminder of what All-4-One sound like…

They know South Africa

Mandela’s Eastern Cape: With my pal Siseko

Port Elizabeth and South Africa’s Eastern Cape were everything I expected and more.

And as revealing and beautiful the country was it was the locals who really stole my heart…

*Which songs remind you of a special place and memorable holiday? Let me know and we’ll share.

A footnote here on All-4-One and Toto.

The R&B boys as you can see still tour, more than 20 years after they formed, are critically lauded and have also been part of the well-received ‘I Love the 90s’ nostalgia rush.

A little local knowledge

I’m One of the locals now: In PE

While keyboardist David Paich who wrote the song had never even been to Africa when he wrote the song.

Which you could probably have worked out from his mixing of his metaphors in the line:

‘As sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Serangetti’. Oh, heck, you make up your own mind…

And that’s something you could never level against Alfred and the boys from All-4-One.

*Which songs remind you of a special place and memorable holiday? Let me know and we’ll share.

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