1001 South African Songs You Must Hear Before You Go Deaf

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Time Of The Season – Neil Cloud

St Cloux - Neil Cloud

St Cloux – Neil Cloud

Most of you will know the Zombies’ song ‘Time Of The Season’ which was a number 2 hit for them in SA in 1969. Back in ’69 the song was a shimmering, sexy, smokey song in that 60’s garage style. About 9 years later and following the demise of one of South Africa’s biggest bands, ex-Rabbitt drummer Neil Cloud took the song and decided to funk it up.

Disco was all the rage then and what better to do than take a nice old 60’s rock classic and turn it into a floorfilling-get-down-and-boogie-till-you-puke-funk-n-roll 70’s disco classic. A lineup of well known names pervade the song with Johnny Boshoff on bass and keyboards and being responsible for the beautiful string arrangements that give the song wings. Malcolm Watson provides the funky, thwacking guitar that Chic’s up the song. Lofty Shultz is among the names responsible for the brass that warms the song up and Rene Veldsman (she of Via Afrika fame) brings a sultry vocal to make love to Neil Cloud’s breathy ones. Lastly, there is of course, Neil’s drumming. It’s not just a straight forward keep the beat going drums, there are cascading and twiddly drums thrown in every now and then.

Drummers are not renown for having solo careers post the break up of a band, and even fewer actually make even half decent music on their own. But some of them do and Neil Cloud was one. While none of the tracks on his only solo offering ‘St Cloux’ (which included ‘Time Of The Season’) made the charts in SA, both ‘Time Of The Season’ and the epic 17 and a half minute cover of Marmalade’s ‘Reflections Of My Life’ (with a bit of the theme to ’The Good The Bad And The Ugly’ thrown in for good measure) made the cut for what is arguably the definitive collection of South African disco music – Gallo records’ ‘Disco Fever’. ‘Time Of The Season’ was a song that was one of the stand outs of its genre.

Where to find it:
Disco Fever – Various Artists, (July 1999), Gallo, CDREDD 627 (Out of print, so you may struggle)

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