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Heads Up! It’s Shortstraw at Park Acoustics

Alas…the last Park Acoustics of 2017 is before us. Fortunately the line up is a fitting send off to a great year so naturally it features the Shortstraw boys! I got hold of Alastair Thomas to dig up some of the dirt ahead of the gig!

Richard Chemaly (RC): Great to catch up with y’all again. Last we spoke you were setting out on your Those Meddling Kids experiment. Now that the project has been completed, what can you report back?

Alastair Thomas (AT): Well, we won’t be doing that again! It was novel, and I’m glad we did it, but it was a lot of work for kinda a little bit less reward than if we had just gone the normal route.

RC: You’ve also just come back from touring Europe. How’s that exchange rate working out for you? More importantly, is it true that steaks in South Africa are just better?

AT: Everything in South Africa is better! It’s nice to make the trip overseas, but we’ve got it good here, man! Better food, friendlier people and WAY cheaper beer.

RC: What I digg about your shows is that you mix it up across your repertoire and play songs from throughout your decade of music making. Have there been any songs you’ve hit *shift+delete* on?

AT: *chuckles* Ja, most definitely. There are also a bunch of songs that we love to death, but unfortunately go down terribly, so we’ve had to take them out of the set.

RC: Now the important questions, if each of you were a fastfood chain, who would be what and why?

AT: Tom: Kauai
Gad: Wimpy
Russ: Spur
Jake: Subway
Al: Chicken Licken

RC: I notice you’ve also got Boosh going again. I’d like to think it’s because we pressed you a bit….months ago. Also cool is that it seems our very own Jason Lume will be MC’ing once more. What inspired the revival and how did you get such a sick lineup for the pool?

AT: Ja, it’s about time, right?! Well, we’re taking a break for a bit – probably 2018 and maybe even longer – so we wanted to go out with a bang. And what bang is better than a Boosh bang? So it’s a little send off party I guess more than anything else.

We’ve been lucky enough to make some friends in the industry over the years we’ve been involved, so we were able to call in some favours to make sure this Boosh is a special one. Jay Lume has been MCing Boosh since like 2012, so it would be weird if we wasn’t involved in this one!

RC: Awesome! But also oops, this is a Park Acoustics interview so let’s talk about that a bit. You’re obviously no strangers to gig, would it hurt if you weren’t invited to play again this year? How lekker is it to get repeat gigs?

AT: Parks is an institution and it’s always an honour to get asked to play. Being part of the year end Parks is such a treat, because it’s kinda like normal Parks on crack. Everything is just bigger and better and we can’t flippin’ wait!

RC: With the chilled out vibes of the park, do you calm your set down a tad or are you going to make a bit of noise?

AT: What we’ve come to realise is that the Parks crowd aren’t ones for taking it easy, so we’ll be bringing the noise and hopefully getting everyone on their feet.

RC: Individually and collectively, I’ve noticed you have a habit of reinventing the old and bringing it to the new world. What’s the significance of having Park Acoustics at the Voortrekker Monument in that light?

AT: As I said, Parks is an institution, as is the Monument, so it only makes sense to bring them together. Two Pretoria gems coming together!

RC: Finally, shall we?

AT: We shall…

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Born and bred in Bloemfontein on a diet of cynicism, brandy and terrible literature, this little boy, disguised as a sane adult, takes comfort in knowing that the world is wrong and is set on proving it. Did we mention he's an attorney with a degree in economics? Rich quit his job, jumped on a train, currently pays rent to hold his stuff in Hillbrow and is actually the most non-attorney attorney around. He's a law firm specializing in Entertainment and Entrepreneurship. He's also moved on to Jack Daniels. You can tweet him @uncle_chem to find out about his un(self)employment adventures.

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