#MEX Music Exchange Interview South Africa

#MusicExchange: Jeremy Loops presents The Cape Open Air: a celebration of SA talent

Spearheaded by renowned musician Jeremy Loops, The Cape Open Air event series will delight attendees with five local bands daily taking place on 2-3 December 2023. With the picturesque ocean as the backdrop, the event boasts a packed lineup starting from midday, leading up to sunset headline performances.

Attendees can expect a day filled with the harmonious blend of established South African musicians and rising local talents at Muizenberg Park.

With the picturesque ocean as the backdrop, the event boasts a packed lineup starting from midday, leading up to sunset headline performances.

The Saturday (2 December) lineup culminates with Jeremy Loops taking the stage, followed by the iconic Mango Groove making their first appearance at Muizenberg Park on Sunday (3 December).

"I'm incredibly proud to present this event. Having the privilege to skate up to my house and play right in my backyard is a dream come true. I cannot stress enough the importance of supporting and uplifting our local music scene. We're not just celebrating music; we're celebrating community, culture, and the resurgence of live music in our beautiful city", says Loops.

The Cape Open Air takes place on 2-3 December 2023 and tickets are available at www.webtickets.co.za.
Doors Open at 12noon each day. The events end at 21:00 and 20:00 respectively.
Saturday, 2 December 2023: Jeremy Loops, Sean Koch, Grassy Spark, Coasters, Jabulile Majola
Sunday, 3 December 2023:: Mango Groove, Ard Matthews, Nomadic Orchestra, Laurie Levine, Booshle G

I recently chatted with singer-songwriter, Jeremy Loops...

What is your purpose?

To tackle life’s adversity with grace, to live well and to spread joy through music whenever I go.

What does music mean to you?

Music is a time capsule of memories and emotions.

Image by Ross Hillier
Image by Ross Hillier

My music is about…

Telling stories of life, love, and adventure with a constant search for the silver linings.

What is your motto?

‘If you make it with your hands, you will better understand.’

Fame is about…

I truly do not care much for fame at all. I want to help put South African music on the world map because we have ridiculous talent here. I think fame is a byproduct of putting yourself out there like that, but fame is not the goal.

Retirement will happen when…

Probably never. I look at my father who is 'retired', so to speak, but he's still active every day. He takes on really big projects he dedicates himself too, and if his interests shift, he shifts with it. I like that model.

I don't do…

Dwell on things too long.

I would love to co-write with…

Bob Dylan and Jack Johnson. Their laid-back styles resonate with me in different ways.

Where do you go for inspiration to create?

Nature, especially the beaches and mountains of South Africa. Also, just inside the recesses of my mind. Sometimes I’ll just check out for a while. Mentally. Take a holiday up there and music starts to come.

What is the most enjoyable aspect of your work?

Playing live shows is an unmatchable joy. I've yet to experience anything in life that's comparable to that type of connection with that many people at one time.

The song you must do during every show?

Down South has always been such a crowd favorite. But Mortal Man has become that song too. Absolute must haves.

Any funny moments on stage?

Too many to mention. Everything and anything can and has happened on stage. Let’s do a longer format interview sometime and I’ll spill the beans.

Image supplied
Image supplied

My heroes are…

I don't really have any anymore. I learned the hard way that heroes will only disappoint you. I kind of try my best to borrow all the good bits from everyone. If it had to be specific people, for the purposes of this piece, I'd probably say Kelly Slater (surfer) for his unbelievable longevity and Woody Guthrie, the godfather of folk music.

My style icon is…

Don’t have one. Too much ego in style. Rep your own style.

What is your most treasured possession?

Shackleton, my little seagoing adventure boat. We’ve been everywhere together. Explored parts of the South African coastline I never dreamed even existed.

It's your round, what are you drinking?

Whiskey on the rocks or a good South African red wine.

Dream gig to do?

I don't have a specific dream gig, but my mind drifts to selling out stadiums from time to time…or Red Rocks. Big outdoor venues where we can control the look and feel of it all!

What makes you stand out?

I've always been singular about what I care about, and have never truly cared what people think of me or my interests. So, I can't say I have wild fashion or weird habits that make me stand out, but I think anyone who is just themselves eventually stands out.

Any nicknames?

Jezza. And then just 'Loops'.

If you were not a musician, what would you do?

Photography and Environmental activism, it's a cause close to my heart.

Pick five words to describe yourself?

Adventurous, positive, laid-back, creative, and connected.

5 must have songs on your Spotify playlist please

Lost in The Light - The Bahamas
Carina - The Remix - Dirty Nano
Let Down - Toots and The Maytals
4th Time Around - Bob Dylan
Time to Run - Lord Huron

Greatest movie ever made?

Fantastic Mr. Fox.

Image by Linde Dorenbos
Image by Linde Dorenbos

What book are you reading?

Apeirogon by Colum McCann

What song changed your life?

I Quit My Job - Old Man Leudecke

Who do you love?

My family, friends, and the fans who make it all possible.

What is your favorite Word?


Top of your bucket list?

Piloting my own seaplane over Fiji, where I can anchor and live aboard for a surf and fishing trip of epic proportions. Take a guitar and some mics and write some songs.

Your greatest achievement?

I genuinely think just becoming a musician is my greatest. When I was young, I just never thought I'd be able to turn this love and passion into an actual occupation that provides for my family. More specifically, maybe, when we sold out the 5000-seater O2 Brixton Academy in London. It was a headline show and a very big deal, and something no South African musician I can think of has done in the last two decades possibly. It really gave fuel to this mission we're on of taking South African music worldwide.

Image supplied
Image supplied

What do you complain about most often?

Not enough hours in the day.

What is your biggest fear?

Stagnation; I always want to be evolving. I fear not trying. I don't fear failure. I fear inaction and the regrets of not having tried.

Happiness is…

Making music and sharing it with the world.

On stage, I tend to…

Get lost in the moment and let the music flow.

The best life lesson you have learned?

Embrace change, it's the only constant.

What has been your favorite journey so far?

Touring the far corners of South Africa and feeling the energy of my home crowd.

Do you do charity work, and if you do – what do you do?

Yes, environmental work through Greenpop, focusing on reforestation projects.

Wishes and dreams?

To keep making music that resonates and to make a positive impact on the world.

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About Martin Myers

Co-owner at Triple M Entertainment, founder Music Exchange, manager Sipho Hotstix Mabuse
Let's do Biz