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Listen to Benjy Mudie every Thursday night between 8pm and 12pm on Radio 2000.

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Benjy Mudie talks to Ian Anderson (22MB)

You say it's your birthday...

December 24
Jan Akkerman (Focus) (1946)

December 25
Noel Redding (Jimi Hendrix Experience) (1945-2003)

December 26
Phil Spector (1940)

December 27
Larry Byrom (Steppenwolf) (1948)
Mick Jones (Foreigner) (1944)
David Knopfler (Dire Straits) (1952)
Mike Pinder (Moody Blues) (1941)
Pete Quaife (The Kinks) (1943)

December 28
Alex Chilton (Box Tops) (1950)
Edgar Winter (Edgar Winter Group) (1946)

December 29
Cozy Powell (Black Sabbath) (1947-1998)
Marianne Faithfull (1946)
Ray Thomas (Moody Blues) (1941)

December 30
Jeff Lynne (Electric Light Orchestra) (1947)
Felix Pappalardi (Mountain) (1939-1983)

December 31
Burton Cummings (The Guess Who) (1947)
Tom Hamilton (Aerosmith) (1951)
Andy Summers (Police) (1942)
George Thorogood (1951)

January 1
Morgan Fisher (Mott the Hoople) - 1950
Joe McDonald (Country Joe & the Fish) - 1942

January 2
Chick Churchill (Ten Years After) - 1949

January 3
Sir George Martin (Beatles producer) - 1926
John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin) - 1946
Stephen Stills (Crosby Stills Nash & Young) - 1945

January 4
Michael Stipe (R.E.M.) - 1950

January 5
Chris Stein (Blondie) - 1950

January 6
Syd Barrett (Pink Floyd) - 1946
Malcolm Young (AC/DC) - 1953
Wilbert Harrison (Canned Heat) - 1929
Sandy Denny (Fairport Convention) - 1947

January 7
Kenny Loggins (Loggins & Messina) - 1948

Courtesy of
About ClassicRock

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News Archives
Previous newsletters are available in the News Archives.
Playlist Archives
All the playlists are available in the Playlist Archives.
Benjy says...

Dear Rock of Ages subscribers,

So here we are again, at the end of another year. I must say that it was a great year for rock music, both in terms of new music and of course the reissues of classic albums and artists. Firstly I must apologise for the delay in getting this newsletter to you timeously, things have been rather hectic here over the past few weeks and I just haven't had the time to stitch everything together.

Thanks for your patience last week whilst we 'lost' the first 90 minutes to the live broadcast of the Jacob Zuma speech - as Radio 2000 is a Public Service Station (PBS) and is part of the SABC we have an obligation to cover the occasional major sporting, social and political event - 'nuff said .... right on to the business of good music - firstly I want to thank the thousands of listeners for entering the Bob Dylan competition, it was by far the biggest competition we have had on the show and certainly a 50CD boxed collection was also the biggest prize that we have offered ... and the winner, randomly drawn from a box, was Mandy Fourie of Cape Town who was besides herself with joy (but not as freaked out as her Dad!) .... I have extended the Eagles competiton into January in order to give more of you a chance to enter - you can win an Eagles pack including a CD of the new album "Long road out of Eden", the "Hell freezes over" DVD and a rare collectors vinyl copy of the new album - pretty cool. huh? All you have to do is go to the ROA website at and enter .... you will notice that this week's newsletter features the past 3 weeks playlists - this is because we have had numerous requests to do this. As you know the newsletter now goes out every two weeks and in some cases every three weeks so many of you want to know what was played on what week .......

Before I go into my personal rock picks of 2007 I want to let you know what is coming up on ROA over the next couple of weeks. Next week's show (3rd January) has been pre-recorded as I am away that week, the live show will resume on January 10. Here is what you can expect over the next three weeks. I would like to take this opportunity to thank our intrepid webmaster Brian Currin for his hard work on the newsletters and website, the technical staff at Radio 2000 for getting the audio side sorted and especially to you ... the Rock of Ages listener and subscriber, without whom, there would be no show! ...... Merry Xmas and a Happy 2008 ......

Upcoming specials

27th December ... Riverside .... If you thought that Poland was only famous for vodka, the Solidarity trade union plus steel and coal well then think again ... This Eastern European country is producing some amazing music and none more startling as nu-progsters, Riverside, who have produced 3 fantastic albums so far. Similar in feel to Porcupine Tree with elements of Floyd, Marillion and Opeth thrown in for good measure they make music that is both at once familiar and challenging - don't miss it!

White Witch

3rd January ... White Witch ... One of those generally obscure but wonderfully talented 70's bands that I pull out from the hat every now and then. However they are very much a cult band among those scholars of early prog rock with a helium voiced lead singer who makes Rush's Geddy Lee sound like Tom Waits ... they made 2 great albums before disappearing into the mist.

Harvest Records

10th January ... Harvest Records ... Following on from our successful forays into the Vertigo and Island records catalogue we now delve into the magic of EMI's rock imprint, Harvest Records ... featuring the likes of Deep Purple, Roy Harper, Syd Barrett, Greatest Show on Earth, Pink Floyd, Edgar Broughton Band, Barclay James Harvest and many more gems.



Riverside is a way of expressing reflections, dreams and fantasies through music. It is an idea for exposing emotions, for an escape from the grey or unnaturally overcoloured reality. It is a music inspired by a time, a place, a thought and a word, a figment of their own and other people's imagination. It is joy and sadness, a whisper and a scream.

Before they met at the same time and place, Piotr Grudziński (Grudzień) had experimented as a lead guitarist in a metal band "Unnamed", Mariusz Duda had created progressive sounds as a vocalist, bass and keyboard player in a band "Xanadu" from Węgorzewo, Piotr Kozieradzki (Mittloff) had been a drummer in death metal "Hate" and "Domain", and Jacek Melnicki, a sound engineer in his own recording studio, had played keyboards as a guest musician on the albums of the artists he promoted.

Riverside Piotr Grudziński: The idea of creating a band emerged rather accidentally. I was going with Mittloff in his car, Mit put a tape on and quite unexpectedly I heard Marillion. It turned out that in spite of playing in a death metal band, he was a great fan of progressive rock, and as I was also very keen on that kind of music, we thought that maybe one day we could play some progressive sounds together. After a year we started to talk about this idea more and more often.Melnicki's studio proved to be a good place to start up a musical side-project, quite informal and non-committal, the one Grudzień and Mittloff had been talking about for some time. Jacek agreed to play the keyboards and they only needed a bass player.

Mariusz Duda: One day I gave Jacek a CD with some recordings of my previous band and asked him to "de-hiss" it. He kept it for about a year and never "de-hissed" the material (laughs). But he might have listened to it, because after a year he asked me to show up at a rehearsal of a new band who were to play similar music. I thought, "what the heck, someone here wants to play progressive rock? Why not?" :-)They first met at a rehearsal in the autumn of 2001. It clicked.We decided to depart from certain clichéd schemata; to abandon any inspirations drawn from the bands which most "progressive" rock players tend to follow despite changes in musical trends; to just play around with melodies and rhythms in a way that would satisfy all of us.

Riverside Then came the first compositions. Instrumental at the very beginning, they began to evolve towards songs, when one day Mariusz experimented with singing in some strange language. Much to his surprise, his friends approved of it and thus the band gained a vocalist.In the meantime, someone suggested the name Riverside. It stayed.The band started more regular rehearsals. What was to be only a non-committal project, became the priority for the members of Riverside and lessened their interest in their mother bands. In October 2002 Riverside presented their music at two concerts in Otwock and "Przestrzeń Graffenberga" in Warsaw.March 2003 saw the release of their first demo titled simply "Riverside."

Riverside Piotr Grudziński: The release of the demo was, in my opinion, an essential step on the way towards showing our music to the public and creating an interest in Riverside. We made 300 copies, some of which were sent to radio stations and labels both in Poland and abroad, and 200 of them were given out as a bonus to the ticket for the concert in "Kopalnia" club. That was a perfect move. We "got rid" of the CDs in a couple of days, and some copied CD-Rs soon began to circulate. We've whetted the appetite for a full studio album.

Mariusz Duda: The first album was called "Out Of Myself." It contains the material from the demo, but there was also some new, more mellow pieces and another instrumental "Reality Dream." It was a story about a man who is trying to find himself again in a society after a nervous breakdown, he's "entering the same river" and believes that this time everything's going to be alright. But when he fails again, he doesn't give up. The first track on the album is a "wink" to the listener. We know that we're not discovering new lands in our playing. But we do hope that we're doing it our own way, and, sooner or later, we will work out our own distinctive style and our music will not easily fall into any categories, it will not be easily labelled. In the last song on the album, "OK," there are the words "There is sadness in my mind - OK." I think it's a good summary of the album. It's a kind of coming to terms with things as they are. You're sad for the most of the day, you're locked up inside yourself, you're wearing black clothes or whatever else - so what? You are what you are and that's OK. For us, what we're playing is OK and I hope that the story will not end with "Out Of Myself"... :-)

Riverside The listeners' interest, the warm words in radio programmes, the favourable press reviews, the thank-you letters and emails - all that left the band no choice but to finish the recording of the debut album. Unfortunately, there was an increasing dissonance between the involvement and approach towards music on the part of Mariusz, Grudzień and Mittloff, and Jacek's interest mainly in his own studio commitments. The atmosphere was becoming unbearable.And so the last months of 2003 turned out to be revolutionary for Riverside. The band parted company with Jacek Melnicki, leaving behind the way they used to work. As a trio, they finished mixing the debut album, "Out Of Myself," just in time to release it before Christmas.One month before the album was released, the band was joined by the new keyboardist, Michał Łapaj. Riverside started meeting in their own rehearsal room and in this new, refreshed line-up they began preparations for the upcoming live performances.In the meantime, Riverside got media attention in Poland and abroad. It turned out that their songs were aired not only late in the evening and at night. "Loose Heart" got to the popular hit list on the Polish Radio Programme 3, and the track "Out Of Myself" topped the Warsaw Radio 94 and the Polish Radio Programme 1 charts. The interesting thing was that before its worldwide premiere, Brazilian Internet zin "Progressive Rock & Progressive Metal" recognised "Out Of Myself" as the album of July 2004. This was followed by "Second Life Syndrome" in 2005 and more recently by "Rapid Eye Movement".

Rapid Eye Movement

Rock Of Ages Recommends

Here are some of my rock choices for 2007, in no particular order:

Led Zeppelin - Mothership ... The mighty Zep live and live again with this 2 cd / 1 dvd remastered 'best of' set, proving once again just how influential and innovative they were ... and still are! Songs like "Black Dog", "Since I've been loving you" and "Good times, bad times" still raise the airs on my neck.

Coheed & Cambria - No world for tomorrow ... The third and final episode in the prog rock trilogy, power riffing and gentle acoustics are the order of the day by one of the best new bands of the last two decades - highly recommended for lovers of Rush, Led Zep, etc.

Dream Theater - Systematic chaos ... virtuoso musicianship, intense prog rock by this highly acclaimed US outfit - play loud!

Gary Moore - Close as you get ... Back to the roots for Irish guitarslinger Moore with this set of originals and cover versions .... stinging fretwork and heartfelt vocals make this one of the best blues records for years.

Porcupine Tree - Fear of a blank planet ... this follow-up to 2005's award winning "Deadwing" finds prog rock's brightest hope in a more mellow mood, awash with multi-layered guitars and keyboards this album is a must for modern prog fans.

Joe Bonamassa - Sloe Gin ... Rock of Ages's favourite bluesman takes a step to the left with this set of great folk/rock blues tunes. Produced by our own Kevin Shirley this album takes the blues one step further.

Riverside - Rapid Eye Movement ... Poland's greatest, and arguably only, musical export move into the big league with their third album. For lovers of latter day Floyd, Marillion, etc.

Black Sabbath - The Dio Years ... Unlike most Sabs fans (although there are many who concur with me) I have always thought of Ronnie James Dio as the superior vocalist in the band, both as a performer and writer. This collection brings together this lineup's best work plus 3 new songs ... metal never sounded so cool!

Rock Of Ages News

Scott Weiland has been formally charged with DUI which means driving under the influence of alcohol. This follows an incident last month, when the Velvet Revolver frontman crashed his car in Los Angeles. He'll be in court next month.

A charge of domestic battery has been dropped against Scott Stapp. The former Creed singer was arrested in May, after allegedly hurling a bottle at his wife. Stapp, though, has agreed to attend anger management classes.

Queen With Paul Rodgers have made a new track available for download. Titled 'Say It's Not True', the aim is to help highlight the ongoing dangers from AIDS; December 1 was World AIDS Day, and the song will be available on and through, and

Led Zeppelin filmed their re-union show at the 02 Arena in London. This was done for a DVD.

Congratulations to John Mellencamp. He's to be inducted into the Rock 'N' Roll Hall Fame, at a ceremony in New York on March 10.

Short Cuts … You have to feel a bit sorry for the promoters of the Bonnaroo Festival in Tennessee. There they are, trying to out together a damn fine bill for next year, when an anonymous email sparks a frenzy. This claimed that Led Zeppelin and Metallica were gonna be the headliners. Cue huge excitement. Cue massive interest in the festival. Cue denials from the promoters. All of which probably means that whoever is finally confirmed, it's going to feel like an anti-climax ... Looks like the Sex Pistols are keen to carry on. There's talk of a major tour next year ... Is there no end to the marketing scams? Now there's a limited edition Led Zeppelin jeep available. Only seven have been manufactured, with all sorts of Zeppelin-related graphics. Hey, what about a Led pencil set? ... Wanna know what your musical taste says about you? Apparently, if you're a metalhead you've got anger issues, while classic rock fans go for the normal things in life. Who says so? Someone called April Masini, who's written a book titled 'Date Out Of Your League'. No comment! ... You may have heard that the sheriff's office in Fargo, North Dakota recentely used an Ozzy gig to arrest over 30 people with warrants out on them. They effectively tricked these people into believing they'd been invited to a special party prior to the show. Now the same sheriff's department are selling T-shirts of the event! However, all the proceeds are going to charity. Which makes it OK. Or does it? ... Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz has denied that he's upset with Canadians Neurosonic. A reports suggested he'd written to the band, asking them to drop a song from their set which mocked his girlfriend Ashlee Simpson. Not true, says the Boy. In fact, he claims never to have heard of the band. So, who started the rumour? Erm, Neurosonic. Out for cheap publicity, chaps? ... Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne are being lined up to present the BRITS next year. The first time ever that metal might be acknowledged by the UK equivalent of the Grammys ... Trent Reznor has no time for the sort of self-congratulatory nonsense that surrounds the Grammys. Here's what he had to say about it: "While the music industry is doing everything they possibly can to go out of business, can we all make sure to rid ourselves of the Grammys, too? Out of touch old men jacking each other off. ENOUGH!" ... Blood Red Throne get the vote as the most drunk band of the week. They turned up at a gig with a jug of Long Island Ice Tea, and were so inebriated they couldn't actually pronounce the name of their own band. A heroic effort ... So, you're a teacher working late, when suddenly you hear some pupils over the PA system. They seem to be threatening your life, singing 'you're gonna die'. What do you do? Call the police, who turn up in force, arrest and cuff the kids. Then you find out, they were actually messing around doing a karaoke version of Guns n' Roses' 'Welcome To The Jungle'! Ooops. That happened at Booth Free School, in Roxbury, Connecticut. Perhaps they should make GNR lyrics compulsory reading? ... Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong has started a side project called Foxboro Hot Tubs. The music's said to be inspired by 1960s rock 'n' roll. Expect a free six-track EP soon ... Journey have confirmed their new singer. He's Ariel Pinada. The band are working on a new album with producer Kevin Shirley ... Deep Purple keyboard player Don Airey is to release a solo album called 'A Light In The Sky' through Mascot in late February.

Live Gigs

Boulevard Blues Band
28th Die Boer One night of All Acoustic Blues.....8 30pm
30th Berties Mooring, Gordon's Bay
31st Nameless Pub New Year bash

5th Fogeys in Muizenberg
12th Cape Farmhouse Scarborough
20th Berties Mooring Gordon's Bay
26th Berties Mooring Gordon's Bay

Hot Rockin' Nights (Classic Rock & Heavy Metal )
28th December Upstairs at the Kimberley Hotel, cnr Roeland & Buitenkant Str, Cape Town

Southern Gypsy Queen
28th December - Potter's Place, J-Bay, Eastern Cape
31st December - St Francis New Years Party at the Lynx Golf Club
3rd January 2008 - Kunskafee, Durbanville, Cape Town

28th December The Red Door Pietermaritzburg
29th December Burn, Durban

Prime Circle/Red House/Lonehill Estate
31st December Tempo's Randburg

More rock (and reggae) on your radio...

Tune in to the many other great music shows on RADIO 2000 ..... Wake up every morning with Ray White and Nichole de Silva on the funky, vibey Breakfast Show (6-9am) - news, weather, 2010 updates, comedy, competitions and tons of cool tunes - no 'superstar dj ego bull..' just fabulously entertaining radio ..... Women on the Move with Carol (9-noon) features interesting issues, guest interviews and more of the music that you like to hear ..... From 12 to 3pm it's the Empress of Cool Radio - Michelle Constant and The Lucky Packet - a daily dose of unmissable radio, a virtual melting pot of entertainment, interviews, documentary stuff, news, cultural issues, addictive music and much more ... lots of fun, fun, fun ... Tuesday nights 8 to midnight get ready to crank it up with the mighty Barney Simon on the SA Rock Show - wall to wall music, news, demos, gear reviews and some straight talking from the rock radio legend ... Join Doug Anderson on Saturdays for the Request show 1-3pm where you can request your fave rock records.... Sundays it's skanking time on Bongolution between 1-3pm with da man Bongani who spins the finest in roots reggae. Later you can chill with host Eric Allan's Jazz Rendezvous between 5 and 8pm where he spins the cream of classic and smooth jazz as well as some interesting fusion music.....

Rock of Ages presents "Footstomping Music"

Order this album directly from the Rock of Ages website.
Click on for details.

click to buy this CD direct from Rock Of Ages
Rock Of Ages Presents Footstomping Music

Track List
  1. Grand Funk Railroad - Footstomping 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

Buy this 'Footstomping Music' CD direct from Rock Of Ages

Keep the rock real...


Contact Rock of Ages

Snail mail:
PO Box 782022, Sandton 2146
Studio phone: 089-1102003

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.

Stay tuned every Thursday 8-12pm for the best in classic rock on RADIO 2000.

Your Host

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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