Ben Howard live in Johannesburg on the 25th of July 2015. I have been meaning to write about this amazing weekend without sounding like a complete creep. I left for JHB on Friday evening. I don’t mind long bus rides, really. It is cheaper, which is the most important part! Hah! It was pouring and cold. I arrived at 05:00 and a beloved friend picked me up with a huge smile on his face! We hadn’t seen each other since October last year but we picked up where we left off. He is a true gem. Anyway, coffee and nuts to start off the day. The concert was only starting at 13:00 so I had time to catch up. Thank you Jen and Sophia for welcoming me with wide smiles. As a Durbanite, JHB winters are what nightmares are made of! I arrived at the venue at 12:55! I honestly could not contain my “kid in a candy store” excitement. It seems like people do not go to concerts alone, but, erhm, I had a fabulous time. I met new people and sure had a jolly good time. Farryl Purkiss and Bye Beneco were the opening acts. I had seen Farryl Purkiss numerous times during my university days; great acoustic music and fine voice to get me in to the mood. Bye Beneco, they are interesting. Gypsy sounds. I would definitely add them to my wanderlust playlist. Do give them a listen.
Ben. I have so many words for him. I do not want to take photos with him. Nor, do I want to scream and go mental just to meet him. I just want to say a simple thank you. I have never been moved by music like I was for the 1hour30minutes! Is it possible for someone to sound even better live? It is the lyrics, though. The words are like a gently flowing stream. He started off the show with “Small Things”; I had goosebumps all over and at that point, I knew it was going to be a magnificent afternoon. He sang “Black Flies” and that’s when he got me! Glassy eyed and all. It is just surprising that I have turned to his music for almost every event in my life since leaving University. I remember listening to “Keep Your Head Up” as I was packing up my room back in 2012. I have listened to “Old Pine” and “End of the Affair” after the end of a relationship. I have listened to “Conrad” on repeat after a bad day. I have had his entire discography on repeat when I am reading. He is just part of my life and I absolutely love it.
Of course the crowd chanted “we want more!” He came back out and started to play “Esmerelda”. However, being in South Africa, as the clock struck 18:00, we had loadshedding. The power went out and the show was over. I met up with friends in Kensington for a birthday bonfire. By 23:00, the temperature had dropped to 0 degrees. I needed more layers than the five that I had. This meant, going to snuggle on a couch with a rather attached dog. The sweetest, large bugger! The long bus ride was quite a stunner! Worth every penny, worth the wretched JHB winter, worth waiting for 6 months! “Hot sand on toes, cold sand in sleeping bags. I’ve come to know that memories were the best things you ever had…” With Love, x