In days gone by you might have struggled to find a blues gig in Cape Town – but we’re happy to report that over the last few years, the blues has been flourishing. A major contributor to this is the introduction of the annual Table Mountain Blues Summit in 2006. Rated as one of the best blues festivals in Africa, this is a gathering of the finest blues musicians the country has to offer.
While there is no Cape Town music venue dedicated exclusively to blues, there are a number of regular blues events around the city, and certain venues occasionally feature musicians known for their skill in this genre.
Twice a month the centrally-located Mercury Live hosts an event fondly known as Bluestown. This well-attended event happens on the second and the last Thursday of every month. It features a different house band each time, with a rotating array of popular guests, usually on guitar and/or vocals.
In Cape Town’s northern suburbs, Die Boer hosts Blue Tuesday every week, also a collaborative affair with many guests.
There is always a blues event happening somewhere. Other music venues to keep an eye on are Bertie’s Moorings, The Hillcrest Quarry, The Cape Farmhouse, Café Roux and Alma Café.
A popular monthly gig that calls itself “Blues Meets Rock” is hosted, alternately, by either Boulevard Blues (blues) or Pebbleman (blues/rock). It is usually a rocking great affair during which they share the stage.
If you’re a fan of the blues and would like to know what is happening around Cape Town, then tune your internet radio to Zone Radio at 6pm on a Monday evening for a three-hour blues treat featuring local and overseas artists. One thing is for sure, Cape Town blues are here to stay.