Music in a potjie with Aidan Martin

Potchefstroom Herald caught up with with SA musician Aidan Martin who with his many musical influences is creating a musical potjie that is both satisfying and tasty to the sonic senses. Read more here on his band, their musical tastes, upcoming plans, songs he would have loved to write and more.

  1. Why should people listen to Aidan Martin. What would you say differentiates you from other artists?

Well, I incorporate a lot of different styles into my music and no song sounds the same. I like to call it Afrorock/PurpleBlues/Rhythm&Soul/freedom/changeling. The hardest thing starting out is to create your own style, your own sound. Quoting Miles Davis ‘Man sometimes it takes a long time to sound like yourself’ I think I’m starting to do that. You’re the sum of what you listen to and that definitely comes through.

  1. What are your major musical and lyrical influences? In other words what influences your writing?

Life influences my writing, and all the music I’ve listened to and played has influenced my sound.

  1. There are a lot of Blues and old school rock rhythms in your music. What does rock and blues music mean to you? As I understand you grew up in a very musical family?

Rock music is a mix of Blues, Jazz, Swing, Gospel, Country, Folk music and African rhythms. I always go back to the classics, so it means a lot. I guess I had loads of ear training growing up as my mother was a music teacher and played the Cello, Flute and Piano and my older brother Johnathan Martin was a mentor starting out. I wouldn’t call my music Blues Rock or Rock. As I mention Its loads of influences mixed….. in a potjie. So it’s Potjie music hahaha

  1. Would you say there is a lack of good gritty rock and roll musicians in SA? Or is the rock music scene just not as appreciated as it once was?

There’s a lot of great Rock bands and musicians here. The market is just way too small.

  1. Describe to me the sound you went for in the new release “Get Together”. What was the main inspiration behind this song? Do you feel that music is the perfect platform to make a statement about the world and society as a whole?

My inspiration was South Africa and Africa. But it can relate to everyone really. I must say that a lot of the new stuff is political, but also personal. But it has a positive messaged ‘Get Together’. Those are the words that came to me so I used them.

     6. “Get Together was released as two alternate versions, one is grittier while the other one has a an acoustic African feel? What was the reason behind the two versions?

The ‘alternate version’ was actually written first and recorded with the Duo; Myself on Acoustic Guitar and Drummer Jorik Pienaar on Ukulele Bass. We recorded it on a EP we did a while back. I wasn’t happy with that particular version so I redid the vocals with producer Graham Ward and he played Congas on the track and we got it remixed. Now I’m happy! I decide I wanted to make an electric version and came up with some different riffs. Producer Graham Ward liked it and suggested we lay down a 4/4 beat over the triplet feel guitar. Really dig how it came out and decide to release them together to showcase my different Styles/influences.

  1. What are you most proud of in your musical career thus far?

I’m really proud of the new album ‘Refugee’. I’ve been releasing songs as singles on iTunes and the full remastered album will be available in September. I think my songwriting and Vocals have improved a lot. I really enjoy the art of writing, composing and recording. I’m just getting started really.

     8. What are your plans for the future? Any big festivals or shows that you still want to perform at?

I’ve already got new material that I want to record so can’t wait to get back in the studio. I am looking forward to playing Up The Creek early 2018. Also hope to play Mieliepop and Strab again next year. But yeah hoping to play some festivals abroad soon as well.

    9. Any tips for young and upcoming musicians?

Practice, practice, practice. Music is great but the music business is not so great. But if your love of music supersedes your dislike for the business, then you’re cool. Also get a manager that has your best interest at heart! Mines the best! Ain’t that right Michelle Swart?!

Top 3 section

  1. Top 3 guitars that you have owned? I miss my Gibson 335 that I had to pawn. But I’ve got a Gibson Custom and an American Special Tele so I just need a Martin D28 and a reliable Mandolin.
  1. Top 3 Albums of all time? Ali Farka Toure’ & Rye Kooder “Talking Timbaktu”, John Martyn “Solid Air” and Led Zeppelin “Physical Graffiti”
  2. Top 3 Songs you wished you made?  That’s a hard one.  ‘Ramble On’ by Led Zeppelin  ‘A Thousand Days Before’ by Soundgarden and ‘Wind Cries Mary’ by Jimi Hendrix. 
  AUTHOR
Wouter Pienaar
Sport Journalist

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