1001 South African Songs You Must Hear Before You Go Deaf

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Archive for the tag “Karma Ann Swanepoel”

I’m Tempted To Stay – Karma

One Day Soon - Karma

One Day Soon – Karma

Inbetween Henry Ate’s first 2 albums, 1996’s ‘Slap In The Face’ and 2000’s ‘Torn And Tattered’, they sort of released another one. Going under the name of Karma, Karma-Ann Swanepoel and Julian Sun released ‘One Day Soon’ in 1998. ‘I’m Tempted To Stay’ was one of the songs that appeared on that album.

If you didn’t know that Karma was really Henry Ate, you would soon know once this song starts as Karma-Ann’s distinct voice climbs over the horizon of an edgily strummed guitar and starts walking towards you, building and being briefly joined by Julian Sun’s gentle voice before it launches into the wilder, almost angry voice that sometimes finds it way onto songs featuring Karma-Ann.

It is not a comfortable song to listen to. There is angst and an eeriness to the song, but it is a rewarding experience to see it through to the end. You feel like you have been on a journey with Karma, visiting some pretty dark parts of your mind, where you may be tempted to stay, but you end up coming out the other side wiser and feeling able to handle whatever the world throws at you.

Where to find it:
One Day Soon – Karma (1998) Primedia Record Company, CDPRC0014

Hear here:

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Hey Mister – Henry Ate

Hey Mister – Henry Ate

Henry Ate - Slap In The Face

Henry Ate – Slap In The Face

‘Hey Mister’ was one of the early songs that attracted attention to Henry Ate and in particular the lovely voice of Karma-Ann Swanepoel. Taken from the band’s debut album ‘Slap In The Face’, the song was used in a film called ‘Sexy Girl’ and was a firm favourite at live shows.

The subject matter of the song is a little disturbing particularly the line “Mister I’m on the run pass the gun/For I think it’s ’bout time I blew my mind”.  This seriousness of lyric is offset by a cheerful tune in a similar manner to The Smith’s ‘Girlfriend In A Coma’ which is a jaunty song about a sad subject. However reading the rest of the lyrics of ‘Hey Mister’ it does seem to be a metaphorical gun that Karma is talking about, something that can trigger a change of experiences in life and seeing things from a different viewpoint.

The song not only showcases the pure sweetness of Karma’s voice and her ear for a catchy tune, it also showed a maturity in her song writing that was quite remarkable for someone in their early twenties.

Where to find it:
Slap In The Face – Henry Ate, Tic Tic Bang, (1996), BANGCD024

Video:
http://www.myspace.com/video/henry-ate/henry-ate-hey-mister/6999002

Lyrics:
Hey mister in that skirt could you be giving me directions
I’m trying to find a place where I would be guaranteed to lose my mind
By the looks of you, you’ve been there a few times
And in the morning we will exchange clothes
Pretend that we’re married, experience each other’s roles
Take what we can lie back relax, watch the sky evaporate
If I hallucinate we will call it escaping

For I think it’s ’bout time I blew my mind
No I, think it’s ’bout time I blew my mind
Hey

Hey mister don’t you know you have got quite nice legs
Try wearing something a little more suited to your sex
Maybe a suit something with less lace
And later we will go on to my place

Cause I’ve been driving so damn long
And God only knows where I thought I was going
Or coming from
Mister I’m on the run pass the gun

For I think it’s ’bout time I blew my mind
No I, think it’s ’bout time I blew my mind
Hey
No I

Hey mister in that skirt could you be giving me directions
I’m trying to find a place where I would be guaranteed to lose my mind
By the looks of you
Cause I’ve been driving so damn long
And God only knows where I thought I was going or coming from
Mister I’m on the run
Pass the gun, pass the gun, pass the gun, pass the gun

For I think it’s ’bout time I blew my mind
No I, think it’s ’bout time I blew my mind

(Written by Karma-Ann Swanepoel)

Two Seconds – Henry Ate

Two Seconds – Henry Ate (A very short song)

Henry Ate, that was why he was so big. But enough about a long dead monarch. The band Henry Ate was fronted by Karma-Ann Swanepoel who was anything but big in terms of physical size, but in terms of success, she and her band were one of the biggest acts of the early naughties in South Africa.

Taken from their second album, ‘Torn And Tattered’, ‘Two Seconds’ is a beautiful song that centres around Karma’s delicately powerful vocals which are supported by a neatly strummed guitar and solid drum beat. At times, the song threatens to build into a power ballad, but never quite crosses that line.

Like the English king whose name the band punned to get their own, Henry Ate has passed into the history books and while they may not be remember some 450 years after their demise, they will certainly remain in the memory of those who enjoyed their songs, and ‘Two Seconds’ will be one of those songs that will be in that memory.

Where to find it:

Torn and Tattered – Henry Ate (2000), EMI, CDEMCJ(WI)5893

Lyrics:

Two seconds more
Need to think of some better things to say
I don’t feel myself much lately
Since the better aspects went away

Give me my two seconds more
Time enough to send a kiss your way
Don’t you go wandering
‘Cause I could show up soon any day

I hope you like the rain I sent you yesterday
Someone said they saw you dancing in it
Laughing your tears away

Give me my two seconds more
Think it over before you say it’s through
Don’t you dare forget me
‘Cause I couldn’t bear being lost to you

I hope you like the rain I sent you yesterday
Someone said they saw you dancing in it
Laughing your tears away

Two seconds more
Ever silence spent alone will do
I close my eyes and wish myself
Closer and closer I move into you
I’m coming closer and closer move into you
I’m coming closer and closer move into you

I hope you like the rain I sent you yesterday
Someone said they saw you dancing in it
Laughing your tears away

So I hope you like the rain I sent you yesterday

(Words and Music: Karma-Ann Swanepoel)

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