We Talk with The Black Cat Bones ahead of Park Acoustics: Win Tickets

Park Acoustics will be turning 8 years old on 21 May this year. Even though this would make Park Acoustics too young to drink and only in grade 2, as responsible and loving members of the family, we’re keen to go to this birthday party. We’re also giving away tickets on our Facebook page. I’m so stoked for all the bands but in particular, The Black Cat Bones. I used to love their Radium gigs when they were just starting out. Check out my interview with the okes from the  and get amped to party at the Voortrekker Monument!

Richard Chemaly (RC): Hey Cats…are you aware that you ripped off the name of a pretty cool London band from the 60s? They even do an amazing rendition of “Feeling Good”. Are you ever going to travel back in time, cover one of their songs and confuse the residents of Camden? From YouTube comments, it seems you’ve gotten a ton of shlep for this. Any creative insults hurled your way?

Black Cat Bones (BCB): Mmmmm…Ja. We were made aware of this about a year after the band was established, hence the addition of the ‘The’ and the ‘s’ rather than just “Black Cat Bone”. To tell you the truth we were very naïve in thinking that we could have been the only artists to use such a popular Blues expression. We often joke that it’s actually becoming a worldwide franchise in a way but here we are 10 years later grinding on.

RC: Your live act is always energetic to watch and I was one of the few fortunate ones who had the pleasure to see you starting out back at the Radium before anybody knew who you were?. How important were/are those gigs to you. More importantly, how does it feel to be party to South African elite pub history?

[oops] THE Black Cat Bones (tBCB): We count ourselves very privileged be a part of a handful of acts that were granted the opportunity to cut our teeth at one of the oldest and most legendary pubs in the country. Radium was one of our biggest stepping stones coming up and we still respect and honour them as our #1 JoBurg gig.

RC: I must confess to having a chuckle at your facebook page blurb which reads,  “The Black Cat Bones proudly endorse Marshall Music and Jägermeister South Africa.” Are times that tough for musos that you need to sell every bit of space that you have or is that simply an accurate description of your music?

tBCB: Both the Jagermeister and Marshall brands have been  extremely kind to us over the past 10 years and we are proud to be associated with companies who’ll go the extra mile to support and promote South African artists. We could have just as well used that space to tell you how ‘cool’ we are but we deemed it appropriate to give something back to those who helped us achieve a lot of our goals thus far.

RC: Everywhere I look, from Shared Address to Satanic Dagga Orgy, it appears as though harmonicas and guitars are making a significant resurgence. This didn’t seem to be the case when you started about a decade ago. Does this mean you were at the forefront of blues rock in SA?

tBCB: There’s always been a very healthy Blues-Rock scene in South Africa and I think by twisting a bit of the tradition we’ve managed to shed some more light on it. It’s very liberating to see that organic acts are still being recognized and celebrated in this day and age.

RC: Park Acoustics…always a jol but this is a birthday edition…playing birthday parties must be fun. Offspring famously rocked some lucky kid’s bar mtizvah. Have you crashed a birthday party or two to cement rock star status?

tBCB: …and then some. It’s a well known fact that people tend to push a little harder when there’s something worthwhile to be celebrated.

RC: As local rock stars, you’ve got a pretty good social media following. Has it gotten to the point where you go to, say, Captain Stu and chirp them because you have about 2000 more followers?

tBCB: Although we sincerely appreciate the support we don’t put too much stock in what happens on social media platforms. Without sounding too cliché, we see it as a tool and try to use it as such. There’s still a lot to be said for good old posters, flyers and word of mouth. Someone once quoted “Having a lot of friends on Facebook is like having a lot of money in Monopoly.”

RC: As for your Park Acoustics set, not your first rodeo…what have you learned from your previous Park Acoustics trips that will affect your set?

tBCB: Pretoria is home ground for us so we always try to pull out the ‘classics’ and keep it honest. We are however currently recording material for the new album so we plan to introduce a couple of fresh numbers to spice things up a bit.


If you’d like to win tickets to Park Acoustics, be sure to head to our Facebook page, share this interview and tag the friend you’d like to take along. We also prefer those who make us laugh so any funny comments might land you at the top of the pile…no promises though!