Mostly utilised as a recording studio situated at Summerhill Farm Vineyard just outside of Stellenbosch, OMG brings you a virtual music concert experience provided by South Africa’s top audio and visual engineers enabling fine omnipresent quality from whichever device, area or country you stream from. The OMG team, comprised of Nico Pieterse, Franco Hamman, Conrad Jamneck and Natasha Frost Loubser launched this series of free concerts with the purpose of encouraging donations towards respective artists.
The presence of a once Pink Floyd operated Space Audio interface, a C. Bechstein piano all the way from Vienna, and amps that were once Midas-touched by the Beatles are a few of the many gems that this reputable studio space flaunts on their virtual stage.
Amongst other things, nothing says winter-cosy like their warm and matured red colour scheme, like the wines that surround them.
But what makes this virtual concert experience especially “orgasmic” is the OMG wisdom behind recruiting sound engineers, camera crew and music artists. Find audio masterminds such as Briers Coetzee behind the analog Amek Recall console with a 56 Rupert Neve channel, delivering OMG’s impeccable virtual concert sound quality to you. Last but definitely not least, the masterful sounds and stage presence of South Africa’s top musicians. With this combo, you can expect nothing but virtual greatness.
With a host that makes you feel like he has known you for a seasoned amount of time, Conrad Jamneck sits beside the artist on a faded green velvet couch to give you a conversational teaser of what to expect.
Conrad gets excited about OMG’s “virtual omnipresence” in an interview, enough for Siri to respond! Such warmth as this bond transcends beyond virtual reality and sets up for a feel-good show.
The OMG virtual stage boasts a pilot show by Albert Frost, followed by the Winter series launch with Warrongx, Nhoza, Hugo Veldsman and Tomas Taljaard respectively.
The Warrongx duo kicks us off as act #1 of the Winter Concerts with cyclic blues originals for a bass guitar, kick drum, acoustic/electric guitar and vocal arrangement. Considered hailing from the “United States of Khayelitsha”, their expression speaks true to the crossover between their indigenous South African language and the American born blues they claim with gifted South African hands.
Nhoza, performer #2, is a vision in her red dress ensemble as she “take[s] people back to Sophia Town” in a delightful vocal performance of African lullabies, folk songs and blues all through a thread of her African woman voice and jazz piano by Ryan Sackanary. “Jikele Maweni” is the opening track originated by Mama Afrika Miriam Makeba and setting a jovial tone. Nhoza’s voice is crystal clear, laying a bed for flying linguistic clicks and intermittent characteristic whistling.
The #3 performance is blessed to us by “alternative folk” artist Hugo Veldsman on guitar and vocals, accompanied by Gustav “Good Stuff” Franzen on electric bass, and David Bosman on Kajun. One gets to experience a rare honesty about life’s fluctuations between embracing existentialism about oneself and the world’s politics, and being in love with nature and people, all in a wonderful chemistry between him and his band. His latest single “Oh My My” is debuted live, and the band delivers a flawless performance for a very captivating signature guitar riff.
#4 is Tomas Taljaard with his soul blues and rock ’n roll tracks arranged for guitar, voice and occasional harmonica! Conrad compliments the artist, saying: “When I listen to your music I feel like I just want to know more about you.” True to his story and himself, Tomas sings storytelling songs through his characteristically muffled tenor voice that melts within the spaces between the folk guitar chords.
There are many more artists to grace this stage, and that is for you to find out on their Facebook platform.
As Conrad says: “We are fortunate in unfortunate times.” OMG has officially mastered the art of simulating the live concerts you have missed so much. Not just the best kind of release for any time of the day, but the warmth that make “feeling good” a normalcy again in strange times.
While the #LightSARed movement aims to make a change in the rate of the entertainment industry, these gifted and invaluable artists of our music industry deserve not only your love, but your loving support.
6 Jul 2020