Thursday, July 31, 2014

Go Barefoot Interview Part 2

 The weekly column on South African bands and live shows.
 by Omri Ismail Cassiem
This week: Go Barefoot, Part 2

This is the second part of the interview with Go Barefoot. You can find part 1 here.

Is there any advice you would like to give to people just starting out?

Cpt Jonny: “One thing I wish I knew when I was younger because it caused me a lot of frustrations; I was in so many bands that were useless, we were absolutely crap before I started in this band. And I was on the verge of quitting. It is so hard to find people to be in a band with, but if you just keep at it, it will eventually happen”

Saul: “I think based on that, no matter how good you are at your instrument, just start jamming with people and you will start improving. And everything takes time”

Cpt Jonny: “I agree with that; jam with as many people as possible.”

Saul: “We all come from performing backgrounds. Every one of us have all been in bands previous to this one. Mike went and played in a restaurant somewhere.”

Mike: “I used to play in a church band with seven other musicians and I learned a lot from that”

Saul: “It’s all just about jamming with everyone you can”

Mike: “There is also an element of hard work. We all used to get home from school and just start practising and writing and composing and trying different things. So I think you have to have a lot of passion and discipline but you have to enjoy it. There is no point in it if you don’t”

Noah: “I also think one thing that is pretty important to notice is when you first jam with somebody, no matter how talented they are and no matter how talented you are, generally it’s difficult to gel at the beginning. You need to learn each other’s ways of imagining where a riff or a song is going to go. I remember a long time ago Saul and I used to jam and we just couldn’t get into each other’s grooves at all and now we groove well together. But that takes time, like getting to know somebody. It takes a long time.”

Cpt Jonny: “Actually that’s true, because Clive and I have been jamming together for a long time. And we have been wanting to start a band for a long time and we could just never get it together. So it was weird that everything just fell into place.”

Tell me about the name, Go Barefoot. Where did that come from?

Saul: “After we played our first gig”

Cpt Jonny: “We were Rob Stuart at one time”

Saul: “Jonny’s middle name is Rob and Mike’s middle name is Stuart so we just called ourselves Rob Stuart to begin with”

Saul: “After that gig, we realised that this band was actually happening. So for three weeks after band practices we would go to Greenside and grab a couple of beers. We wrote down all the band names that we liked and started trying to decide on one. We analysed everything to do with the band name. Like concept and sound and our genre. It took us so long”

Cpt Jonny: “And we eventually realised that this is not what we wanted to be doing, we said 'Let’s just make music and it will sort itself out eventually.' Go Barefoot is actually a slogan from one of my design assignments. I had to make a corporate identity for a hippie backpackers in Knysna and I had this slogan Go Barefoot in the back of my mind and then we through it out there. We weren’t too keen on it though so we decided if we make good music the name doesn’t really matter that much. So we stuck with it for a little and it grew on us.”

Mike: “And now we really like it. It’s cool though because we never intended for people to take off their shoes. We didn’t intend our band name to become a gimmick where we take off our shoes on stage. Then people started doing it first and calling us hypocrites so we started taking our shoes off on stage. Turns out that it is really comfortable.”

Well that is part two of the interview done. If there are specific questions that you would like me to ask bands please feel free to leave them in the comment section or even drop me a mail at and I shall ask away (provided it is not too obnoxious.

And like always follow me on twitter @Omri_Cassiem for more news on music and life and hangovers and how getting old makes all things much worse but oh so much more fun!