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"Less Talk, More Rock"
Listen to Benjy Mudie every Thursday night between 8 and 12pm on Radio 2000.

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Benjy says...

Greetings once again,

Recently a Rock of Ages listener questioned whether David Bowie was a bone fide 'rock' artist or merely a pop charlatan who disguised his songs in a rock format to gain recognition from the then 'underground' ... whew, what a weighty question! I trust that last week's Bowie special answers that in the best way possible - through his music. In my humble opinion Bowie was one of the true innovators of the early to mid 70's rock landscape, creating classics like "Ziggy Stardust", "Rebel Rebel", "Space Oddity and "All the young dudes" as well as influencing future genres like art-rock, new wave, industrial, glam and even punk.......

Speaking of which, if you were listening to the show on Thursday I played 3 punk classics in a row: The Stooges (surely the Godfathers of that movement), The Dead Kennedys and of course perhaps the most controversial band of them all, The Sex Pistols. I opened the phone lines up for a debate on whether you thought that 'punk' was relevant in the history of rock or simply an amateur, musicianless aberration. That debate raged on after the show with tons of emails in on the subject: there were strong opinions for both sides but the general consensus was that whilst there was indeed a lot of crap, as there is in any new rock movement, bands like the Clash, Siouxie & the Banshees, The Ramones and the Pistols were and still are important milestones in the development of rock music as a whole. I mean does it really matter, as one opinion went, that guitarist Steve Jones only knew three chords at the time of "God save the Queen"? - what three chords they were too!! Full of anger, fire, passion and attitude, after all isn't that what the music that we all love so much has always been about? .... loud, revolutionary, arrogant, offensive to some? .... remember what parents and authorities thought of Elvis's hip gyrations back in '54? The Beatles and the John/Jesus debate? The Stones and their pissing-on-a-garage wall debacle? Jimi played out of tune sometimes and you can bet that Bonzo had a couple of bad days behind the kit. The point being that all movements in rock music have contributed to the development of the genre as a whole and have left behind a residue, whether that be a sound or an attitude, that is carried forward into the next wave. Unlike other forms of music in the 21st century, rock music is vibrant, multi faceted, frontier blazing, challenging and, forever mutating and changing. That's why I love it so much! (but then I am biased not so?)

Now you know that when the mainstream press start to talk about your show one of two things are happening: 1 ... the 'word' is out that this is a show not to be missed or 2 ... your show is becoming boring in which case you, the Rock of Ages listener, are in for weeks of really obscure industrial stoner rock or even better a 'mash up' of Jimi Hendrix and Britney Spears tracks ...... I would like to think that it is the former as that most august of publications, the Financial Mail, had this to say about Rock of Ages in the February 23 issue (pg 87)...

"Good rock is finally returning to SA radio. Benjy Mudie's show Rock of Ages on Thursday nights (8pm to midnight) on Radio 2000 is indispensable listening" ..... Who said bankers don't rock!

The special this week features an artist who many feel is the reincarnation of the spirit of St Janis Joplin - Beth Hart. Whilst I agree that have been many worthy contenders to that crown (Ann Wilson, The Headpins's Darby Mills, Concrete Blond's Johnette Napolitano, etc) no-one has come close to matching the power, intensity and sheer physical passion exhibited by Janis - when she sang you felt it! .... Having seen her live Beth Hart is in that league so tune in on Thursday for one the greatest female rock singers of all time.

The Rock of Ages Special - Beth Hart

Beth Hart
Beth Hart

"Beth Hart is quite simply, one of the finest singers I've ever heard. Period." Mike Bradford (Producer Kid Rock, Uncle Kracker)

Beth Hart
Beth Hart

"Beth Hart is the real deal. You know it from the first time you hear her." Oliver Leiber (Producer/Songwriter The Corrs, BBMak)

"Beth's got an awesome, one-of-a-kind voice. She's really something special. What I liked about Beth from the very first time I saw her perform was her intimacy and sincerity. It was like the audience was invited to hear her in her own living room." Danny Saber (Producer/Remixer The Rolling Stones, U2, David Bowie Beth Hart (January 24, 1972)is a singer who became famous with the hit "L. A. Song".

Beth Hart
Beth Hart

Not much is known about Beth's early life and childhood other than she dropped out of high school to focus on her song writing. While playing the Los Angeles clubs, she enlisted veteran bassist Tal Herzberg and guitarist Jimmy Khoury then formed The Beth Hart Band.In the early 90s, Beth received her first taste of victory when she appeared on Ed McMahon's Star Search, several times, displaying an astonishingly strong and raw performance that wowed the judges night after night. More often than not Beth enjoyed almost unheard of perfect scores, drowning out her competition, and eventually going on to win the grand prize of $100, 000 in the Female Vocalist category for the season.Her raw, passionate vocal style sounds alternatively like Joan Armatrading and Janis Joplin, but certainly not like her contemporary folksingers. Recorded while she was heavily addicted to drugs, her debut album Immortal (Atlantic, 1996) displays her anger, her confusion, her imbalance. On songs like the first single "Run", "Spiders in my bed" and "Summer is gone " Beth Hart's full throated roar announced her arrival in the rock arena in no uncertain terms.Her 10 minute blues rock epic, "Am I the one", is as jawdroppingly powerful today as it was on it's release over a decade ago and remains a staple of her incendiary live shows.

Beth Hart
Beth Hart

Shortly after the release of Immortal, The Beth Hart Band visited South Africa for a short promo tour and I was lucky to have worked closely with her and the guys during that tour.Her solitary performance in Joburg is legendary, despite suffering from continual vomiting due to food poisoning, she belted out a full blooded 45 minute set featuring almost the whole album.Despite touring relentlessly in the States and critical media acclaim, the album failed to ignite the charts and the band broke up - Hart's career seemed to be finished.However being a true survivor Beth took time out to straighten out her personal life and bounced back to record her debut solo album .Falling under the spell of blues singer Etta James for her second album, Screamin' for My Supper (Atlantic, 1999), that also reflects her soul-searching after a number of tragedies and her recovery from drugs. The tender "L.A. Song" gave her a little notoriety, becoming a top 5 Adult Contemporary Chart hit, but "Get Your Shit Together" showcased more character. At the same time, Hart was singing the lead role in "Love, Janis, " an Off-Broadway musical based on Joplin's letters home to her mother.Critics and radio programmers throughout the country were captivated by Beth Hart, with Billboard proclaiming that her "voice and lyrical wisdom are like red stripes painted across a black wall .. Hart's got the stuff of icons." Yet soon after the success of "L.A. Song, " she seemingly disappeared from the music scene.

Beth Hart
Beth Hart

Released in 2003, Beth returned with "Leave the light on", her most revealing and personal album to date. Influenced by blues, rock and gospel the album is all about battling demons (drugs and alcohol in Beth's case) and coming to terms with oneself and being honest about it. "The songs talk about getting well, and also about the darkness of being down and then the light of being back in the living again, " explains Hart, alluding to the substance abuse problems that disrupted her career. "To have gotten the chance to make this record, and especially to have completed it, was like, 'Wow, you got back in the game, and you went for it!' I thought I'd really blown the opportunity to ever do that again."She followed this up with "Live at Paradiso" in 2005 which documents her intense, raw live show and covers material from all three albums.

Beth Hart
Beth Hart

In 2006 she teamed up with Santana/Journey/Soul Sirkus guitarist Neal Schon for a blistering blues rock work out on "I wanna know you" from the Les Paul tribute album "American made, World played" .Hart's newly rekindled passion for life, love and music continues to inspire her many fans - we haven't heard the best of Beth Hart yet!

Beth Hart
Beth Hart


* Immortal (1996)
* Screamin' for My Supper (1999)
* Leave the Light On (2003)
* Live at Paradiso (2005)

Information and pics courtesy of and

Beth Hart
Beth Hart

Rock of Ages presents "Footstompin' Music"

"Footstompin' Music" is almost ready for release through Universal Music, I guess it should be in the stores by early March at the latest. Here is a pic of the front cover for you to drool over as well as the final tracklisting:

click for bigger pic
Rock Of Ages Presents Footstompin' Music
  1. Grand Funk Railroad - Footstompin' Music
  2. Deep Purple - Burn
  3. Uriah Heep - Look at yourself
  4. Black Sabbath - Sweat Leaf
  5. Thin Lizzy - Chinatown
  6. Robin Trower - Too rolling stoned
  7. Mountain - Never in my life
  8. Wishbone Ash - Blowin' free
  9. Foghat - I just wanna make love to you
  10. Budgie - Baby, please don't go
  11. Santana - Toussaint l'Overture
  12. Alice Cooper - Muscle of love
  13. Nazareth - Go down fighting
  14. Blue Oyster Cult - The Red & the Black
  15. Lynyrd Skynyrd - Gimme back my bullets
  16. Free - The Hunter
  17. Taste - What's goin' on

Keep the rock real...


Contact Rock of Ages

Snail mail:
PO Box 53585, Kenilworth, 7745
Studio phones: 021-4342523 / 4342525

The views, opinions, rants, raves and ramblings expressed on this website are the author's own and in no way reflect the views of Radio 2000 or the SABC.

Latest Playlist
All the playlists are available in the
Playlist Archives.
Rock Of Ages News
Closed Doors
Really the only thing that's surprising about The Doors being honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is that it hasn't happened before now. It was not surprising that of the three surviving members of the band, only Robby Krieger and Ray Manzarek were on hand for the February 28 ceremony. John Densmore begged off because, he said, he had a radio interview scheduled at the time of the ceremony.
Give me a break. I can tell you from experience that artists routinely blow off scheduled media interviews, usually for reasons of less import than a star on the Walk of Fame. Are we to believe that Densmore was afraid the radio station would stop playing The Doors if he rescheduled the interview? Come on. It was Densmore and the estate of the late Jim Morrison who went to court to stop Manzarek and Krieger from using The Doors name -- they now perform as Riders On The Storm. When the band reformed as The Doors Of The 21st Century in 2002, Densmore claimed he was not invited to participate. Krieger and Manzarek claim he was. It isn't as though a star on the Walk of Fame is that big a deal, but the band's 40th anniversary is being commemorated in a variety of ways during 2007, and it would have been nice to have seen some togetherness just for old times sake, even if it was forced (courtesy of

It's got 'Rock Hall' to do with Van Halen
What we know for sure: Van Halen -- and individual members Alex and Eddie Van Halen, Sammy Hagar, Michael Anthony and David Lee Roth -- will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 12. They will be introduced by Velvet Revolver. What is currently rumored: Alex and Eddie won't attend, Sammy and Michael will, Dave is a tossup. Velvet Revolver may or may not play a couple of VH songs, possibly depending on how many and which of the VH inductees show up. Oh, and we do know for sure that for the first time, whatever happens will be seen live on VH1 Classic and on MHD, which is MTV's high definition channel. The edited highlights version will begin airing on VH1 on March 17. The surprise here would be if the Van Halens did show up, since that might signal some hint of sanity and/or maturity. Ah, to be an aging rock star ....

Purple nix album
A live album by rock band Deep Purple is being withdrawn from sale after the lead singer asked fans not to buy it. Ian Gillan said the album, recorded in Birmingham and titled NEC 1993, was one of their worst ever concerts and it had been re-released without his knowledge. He said tensions within the band led to a bad performance, adding: "It was coming to the end, it was awful." Sony BMG said it was recalling the album and would investigate why Gillan was not told about its plans.

Audioslave Split: Was It Financial?
So, what really did cause the Audioslave split. According to one source, it may have been financial. Frontman Chris Cornell was allegedly unhappy that he wasn't receiving a share of the huge publishing deal that reflected his input. In the meantime, as reported by ROA, the reformed Rage against the Machine are due to hit the road shortly followed by a new album later this year.

Short Cuts ...... Nirvana, The Stooges, Wolfmother and Pixies all have tracks featured on the upcoming baseball game MLB 2007. This will be available soon.

More Classic Rock?
I can highly recommend the About Classic Rock website run by Dave White. Not only does Dave host one of the most knowledgeable classic rock blogs on the Net but the site itself is very entertaining and informative. There are always great indepth stories on the artists and the rock quizzes are addictive. If you are like me, a classic rock fan, then the weekly About Classic Rock newletter is a must. Sign up at

More rock on R2K......
Suffering from Rock withdrawal symptoms on a Tuesday night? Well then tune the dial el pronto to Barney Simon's show between 8 and midnight every Tuesday on Radio 2000 (or R2K as Barney calls it) for the best in South African rock plus gig guide, albums reviews, demos, new releases, news from around the country and much more...... Unmissable!.... Also don't forget to catch Michelle Constant between 1pm and 3pm Monday-Friday for news, music, interviews and loads of cool stuff.... and of course.... Mo G on the morning drive, weekdays 8-10am... Exclusively on Radio 2000.
Live Gigs
Boulevard Blues Band
3rd March Cool Runnings Obs
4 Berties mooring Gordans Bay
10 Cornerbar Durbanville
11 Berties Mooring Gordans Bay
16/17 iKhapa backpackers Stellenbosch
21 Human Rights day Festival Stellenbosch
22 Klein Libertas Theatre With Delta blue & Southern gypsy queen
23 Fogeys Muizenberg
24 Cornerbar Durbanville
25 Guzzlers Durbanville
28 Berties mooring Gordansbay
30/31 Arrabella Sheraton "Deep south theme"

23 March @ Carfax (Newtown, JHB)
With: Hog Hoggidy Hog and The SlashDogs
24 March @ Nile Crocodile (Sunnyside, PTA)
With: Hog Hoggidy Hog, The SlashDogs and Shu
Jim Neversink
4 March Tempos, Randburg (with The Hellphones)
5 Cool Runnings, Melville

Jack Hammer/Piet Botha
3 March Bertie's Mooring, Gordon's Bay (with Johnathan Martin)
4 March Lord Nelson Hotel (with Johnathan Martin)
8 March Die Boer, Durbanville CT
12 March Dorp Street Theatre, Stellenbosch

Jo Day 10 March Trotters Pub & Grill, Boksburg (Jo guesting with Agro at their CD launch)
24 March Cafe Barcelona, Pta. (unplugged)
31 March Rafterz, Vanderbijlpark. (with Hiccup)

Josie Field (unplugged) & Laurie Levine Duo
3rd March Radium Beerhall, Orange Grove JHB

Lancaster Band
11 March Lever Street Park Kalk Bay

Fuzigish Album Launch
10 March Burn Nightclub

The Hellphones
4 March Tempo's, Hans Strydom Ave, Randburg
9 March The Roxy Rhythm Bar, Main Rd, Melville
10 March Zanzibar, Hokaai Shopping Centre Fairy Glen PTA

9 March The One Ring, Observatory With Support acts: Downfall and Reburn
24 March Gandalfs, Observatory With Support acts: Umbilical Suicide and Downfall.

The Slashdogs
9 March Roxy Rhythm Bar Melville
10 March Zanzibar, Hokaai Shopping Centre Fairy Glen, PTA

The City of Sin
3 March Gandalfs Observatory CT

Guy Buttery & Nibs vd Spuy
13 March Independent Armchair Theatre, Obz

10 March Roxy's, Melville

Running With Scissors
11 March Tempos, Randburg
19 Cool Runnings

Southern Gypsy Queen
24 March Dorp Street Theatre, Stellenbosch

Tree 63 (with Starplayer)
6 March Golden Horse Casino, PMB
9 Northwood Crusaders Sports Club, Durban North
10 His People Church, Goodwood
16 Sandton Convention Centre

Human Rights Day
21 March Die Lentelus Corner of Hammanshand St. and R310 Stellenbosch
Valiant Swart, Taxi Violence, Southern Gypsey Queen, Gerald Clark
12th Avenue, Jo Martin, Boulevard Blues Band, The Rudimentals, Velve.

Splashy Fen Festival
5-9 April Underberg KZN … See for artist lineups

London Calling, Fairview JHB
9th March Swamp Stomp with The Kosmonauts, The Death Valley Blues Band and Swivelfoot

Tanz Café, Bryanston
9th Cassette
10th Collective Unconcious
13th The Parletones
30th Louise Carver

You say it's your birthday...
March 1
Roger Daltrey - The Who - 1944
Mike D'Abo - Manfred Mann - 1944

March 2
Lou Reed - Velvet Underground - 1944
Rory Gallagher - 1948
Mark Evans - AC/DC - 1956

March 3
Re Styles - The Tubes - 1950
Jance Garfat - Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show - 1944

March 4
Chris Squire - Yes - 1948

March 5
Andy Gibb - Bee Gees - 1958

March 6
Hugh Grundy - Zombies - 1945
David Gilmour - Pink Floyd - 1946
Kiki Dee - 1947

March 7
Matthew Fisher - Procol Harum - 1946
Chris White - Zombies - 1943
Peter Wolf - J. Geils Band - 1946

Courtesy of
About ClassicRock

Birthday Archives

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Benjy Mudie
Benjy Mudie with Void in the late 70's - click for bigger picture Benjy Mudie 2006 - click for bigger picture
Then Now

Benjy Mudie is a self confessed 'rockaholic' with little chance of recovery... a music obsessive whose entire life has been spent in search of the lost chord... from discovering Jimi's "Are you experienced" at 13, he has constantly devoured music through lp's, singles, tapes, cds, dvds, books, magazines, film, concerts, radio, tv and the internet. His entire working life has also been music related: from running a record store and later joining WEA Records in the mid 70's through to his 21 year A&R/Marketing stint at Tusk Music where he signed some of the biggest names in South African rock and pop. The last 8 years have been spent nurturing new talent at his indie label Fresh Music and reissuing classic albums as part of it's ongoing Retro series.... To say that 'music is his first love' (to paraphrase John Miles's classic song) is somewhat understated.


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