Reliving Misty Waters Music Festival through vowels and consonants
This past weekend we finally had the privilege to live through the weekend that we have all been waiting for since 2019. Many of us still have the lingering sense of rock and roll ringing in our ears and the most perfect, light purple aura circling around our heads. For those who missed out, keep reading this article to vicariously relive what the rest of us experienced and hopefully it will push you to wake up, shake up and purchase those tickets before they’re all sold out again. There’s been words sprouting through the grapevine that ticket sales for next year are opening before the end of this month, which means you have no excuse to have to read about it again next year – you can LIVE it too!
This year’s Misty Waters Music Festival at Lake Umuzi was probably one of the longest awaited events in Secunda and around the country. The initial planning started mid-2019, and then a unique, global event forced everyone to shift their mindset and shift their normal way of living. In November 2019, the world had no idea of what was yet to come. COVID-19 – the name we’ve all come to know too well, the five letters that rolled over all of our tongues more than any musical lyrics over the last two years. That’s until this past weekend, of course. This article won’t give the pandemic any more attention than it has already received. This article will bring light to what can happen when passion, dedication, hard work and a love for music all mesh together and bring into existence one big merrymaking of like-minded people and pure artistic talent.
What stood out the most this past weekend? People were smiling. And not because that’s what society still expects from us, but because they were truly happy to experience a music festival with like-minded people again. The first music festival in South Africa in almost two years since COVID-19. According to a Berkeley study, “…humans are wired for music.” Listening to music and singing together has been shown in several studies to directly impact neuro-chemicals in the brain, many of which play a role in closeness and connection. New research suggests that playing music or singing together may be particularly potent in bringing about social closeness through the release of endorphins (Suttie, 2016).
This weekend honestly brought an undeniable sense of hope to the industry. Our hope for this industry we all thrive in, is to continue growing and to witness the unclouded love we all share in this world of music. Who doesn’t love a potent release of endorphins?
It’s time to give you some insight into the crazily talented group of artists that were the cause of the endorphin rush within us all this past weekend. The long weekend kicked off on Thursday afternoon and festival-goers had the pleasure of enjoying the likes of Stephen Jonathan, Murray., Jackal and the Wind, and Die Wasgoedlyn that was accompanied by South African rock legend, Albert Frost. Voted as the best blues guitarist in South Africa, Frost joined Die Wasgoedlyn on their set and later fans had a whole one-hour solo show from Frost. The musical talent continued throughout Thursday night with Van Reg and Rede and local Secunda band, Pilgrim South. It was noticeable how hungered out everyone was for a music festival, seeing so many staying up into the wee hours of the morning to watch the last band.
On Friday, September 24th, we celebrated South Africa and its heritage with legions of local South African talent. Steve Umculo, Safety First, Gerald Clark and Jiri Mariscek, Black Water, Wolfgang Marrow, and Tidal Waves filled the early hours of the afternoon with their encouraging melodies. Basson Laubscher & the Violent Free Peace unquestionably presented the crowd with that long desired freedom and inner peace. Following Basson Laubscher & the Violent Free Peace’s set we had the pleasure of watching the band that consists out of the four guys all the girls want and all the other guys wish they were. The band that brought us Lenie Blou, Lenie Blou III, AND Lenie Blou II! Spoegwolf, the headlining act on Friday had the crowd wrapped around their guitar picks and their pinkies as they sang many songs from their latest album, Silwer. You can always expect a unique show from the Spoegwolf guys, and fans had the pleasure of having Danie standing right in front of them on the stage barricading, even grasping a daring fan’s hand to keep him steady on the barricades during Lenie Blou. Spoegwolf’s show came near an end as the remarkable Misty Water’s sign was lit. We will admit, it was touch and go on Friday night, with the elements against us and the ‘M’ almost completely burnt out before the “isty Waters” got the memo.
Fortunately, the sign was eventually lit and people mostly remember elbowing one another to get close enough to grab Danie’s cap before Spoegwolf’s show ended. The remainder of Friday night was spent rocking out to Double Sun, Caution Boy, and the spunky gals from #SOZLOL.
Sweet, sweet Saturday had an 11 band line-up and promised a whole day of authentic and raw South African talent. Soundwarmer’s medicinal music eased all festival-goers into what would be a day for the music festival books. The Lectric Monks, Monkeys, and Indie Dog ensured everyone was well rocked and rolled for when Gert Vlok Nel hit us all deep in the nostalgic groin. Without a single doubt, it was Beautiful in Beaufort Wes and majestic at Misty Waters. After Gert, Akkedis and Black Cat Bones graced the Misty Waters stage with a collaborative tribute to Piet Botha.
It was an honour to have The Black Cat Bones return to the Misty Waters stage for their third consecutive year of rocking. The legends that introduced a new world of music to the youth of South Africa in the mid-to-late 1990’s, Springbok Nude Girls, was the headlining act on Saturday night. Arno Carstens left everyone begging for more of Springbok Nude Girls’ new album Partypocalypse, after only giving the crowd a little taste with songs like Get the Picture and Flashlight. It felt like a partypocalypse when the Misty Waters sign went alight, this time without any issues, as soon as Springbok Nude Girls started playing Blue Eyes. During this time you could spot one of the organisers shedding a tear of elation. As the flames reflected on the water and the last chords of Theo Crous’ guitar hit the ripples, the unanimous feeling of ‘belonging’ rose within the crowd. After a little bubble gum on their boots, festival goers were fed a spoon of pure psychedelia by The Tazers and a whole lotta sleaze thanks to L.A. Cobra. Local Secunda band, Saving Oliver closed the weekend off with their unbelievable show and the bittereinder festies spent their early Sunday morning jamming and grooving to the 70’s inspired beats dropped by #SOZLOL.
It’s safe to say, all musical needs were met at Misty Waters. From metal to blues, from rock to folk, from African tribal to nostalgic Afrikaans – one can say all fancies were tickled. Naturally, Misty Waters Music Festival is about music and the endorphins it offers, but Misty Waters is also so much more. It is an all-around indulgent experience of music, food, drinks, relationships, lekker kuier, and all the other kopskud goodies you can imagine. Along with South Africa’s top talented artists, we’ve got top notch vendors quenching your hunger and thirst.
In the mood for a raspberry slush puppy dosed with a shot of vodka and blueberry garnish? We’ve got that. Perhaps, you’re not a slushy fan. Then why not indulge in a delicious glass of craft gin and beer? We’ve got that too! More of a caffeine, no alcohol kind of person? We’ve got the best coffee roasters, ready to brew you the tastiest, mouth-watering cup of coffee or café late. Now, most importantly, do you have a serviette at hand, because our food vendors will leave you salivating? A variety of food stalls serving festival goers tasty smoked beef briskets, breakfast Paninis, chilli sandwiches, brownies, cookies, fries and so much more. While you satisfy your growling stomach, you can browse around the merchandise vendors, selling everything from leather goods and t-shirts, to hippie pants and colourful ponchos.
The array of top South African talent and unique vendors alone is not the reason that Misty Waters Music Festival has been called the best organised music festival in South Africa. When you attend Misty Waters you can be assured of clean festival grounds, clean ablutions, continuous warm showers, friendly and helpful staff, and safety from security and medical staff. Our organisers go above and beyond to provide the most memorable music festival, each time. If you want to be a part of this life-changing musical weekend don’t hesitate to purchase your ticket, once ticket sales open for Misty Waters 2022.
Remember, Misty Waters Music Festival is not simply a line-up of bands, but a whole experience at Lake Umuzi. We provide a waterpark, restaurants and bars, a spa, luxury accommodation, and an indoor climbing facility, along with incredible musical talent.
This year Misty Waters continued amidst the COVID craze, with a limited amount of festival-goers allowed and we all came out stronger. Who knows what Misty Waters 2022 will hold without any restrictions? Why don’t you come and find out!