[interview] WONDERboom – Top SA act to perform on Crash Test Dummies tour

[interview] WONDERboom - Top SA act to perform on Crash Test Dummies tour_Rob Scholtz

Photo Credit: Rob Scholtz

21 years on and WONDERboom are still rocking South Africa! It’s no small feat to be hailed as one of South Africa’s longest-lived and most legendary rock bands, and still going strong.

Although rock is the fundamental sound of the band, WONDERboom have delved into different genres, ranging from funk through to punk and even kwaito.

None can deny that WONDERboom’s biggest strength is their live performance. From festivals to nightclubs, the band just kicks ass – consistently!

WONDERboom have released 8 albums, headlined many major SA festivals, been nominated for 5 SAMA’s (South African Music Awards), and won a Kanna Award & People Crystal Award in 2003 for South Africa’s hottest band. They also won the South African leg of the 2004 Global Battle of the Bands & came SECOND WORLDWIDE!

There can be few South African music fans that aren’t familiar with their hits, like Never Ever, Jafta Rebel, Something Wrong, Green Fever, Africa, Shadows, Charlie, It’s Great to be Alive, Best Side, On The Radio, Karaoke Bar and now, currently on 5fm and campus stations, Ooh La La.

Cito, Martin Schofield and Wade Williams, the founding members of WONDERboom, have been writing songs and performing together for over 23 years and show no signs of stopping the rocking rollercoaster!

It’s been 7 years and one hell of a rollercoaster ride since the release of their last album, The Automatic Shuffle.

In 2013 they lost their very dear friend and drummer, Garth McLeod, to a freak motorcycle accident.

Then, in a sort of reinvention, they’ve had to get the WONDERmachine up and going again.

Enter Jonathan Bell on drums, and so the process of a new Rock & Roll relationship began…

It’s been a cathartic and introspective journey since, but no one, who has seen them live recently, can deny the sheer magical force that WONDERboom has become again.

Rising Sun, their new album, captures this story in a dynamic way.
The title track suggests what they, as a band, feel – a new dawn. A revival of what was once regarded as an electric, live and very stimulating music experience, is here again!

Crash Test Dummies tour:


Date: Saturday, 17 February 2018
Venue: Hillcrest Quarry, Hillcrest Wine Estate
Time: 12PM
Entrance: R400 General Admission | R1000 VIP
Bookings: Computicket http://bit.ly/2AF7TCm
Facebook Event: http://bit.ly/2ywU4og



Date: Sunday, 18 February 2018
Venue: Pretoria National Botanical Gardens
Time: 1PM
Entrance: R400 General Admission | R1000 VIP
Bookings: Computicket http://bit.ly/2i9x9t5
Facebook Event: http://bit.ly/2hmXqTZ


Interview: WONDERboom

[interview] WONDERboom - Top SA act to perform on Crash Test Dummies tour_AntonVanStraaten_2

Photo Credit: Anton Van Straaten

MA: Hi guys… it is such a pleasure to be featuring you guys on the site!! Is everyone doing well today? 

Hi there. Thanks for having us. We’re all healthy and rocking, thanks.

MA: Before we get started, can you please introduce us to the members of Wonderboom?

Ok, Cito on vocals; Martin on guitar; Wade on bass; Jono on drums.

MA: How/Where did you guys meet up to form this formidable partnership?

I (Cito) met Martin and Wade at a gig we shared at a live rock venue in Randburg called Tattoos. I was in a Goth Rock band called Moonchild and they were in a Funk Rock band called The Eight Legged Groove Machine. Then one day, I needed a band and they needed a vocalist, so I joined the 8LGM. That was about 25 years ago. We then formed WONDERboom with Danny De Wet in ’96. Jono, our drummer, joined us in 2013.

[interview] WONDERboom - Top SA act to perform on Crash Test Dummies tour_Pieter Annandale

Photo Credit: Pieter Annandale

MA: Can you give us a short background on the name Wonderboom?

When we joined up with Danny, who was in the Electric Petals, we had a transition name – The Electric Petal Groove Machine. Kak name. But we were gigging and touring. And on our return from the Cape, coming up the N1 highway, I saw a town sign with “Wonderboom” on it, just outside Kroonstad. We all agreed that it was a cool name, at the time.

MA: Where do you guys take inspiration from in your “sound”?

Our sound gets influenced by so many elements. Obviously, our favourite music and bands, but also influenced by our everyday lives, here in South Africa. Very eclectic.

MA: Our local scene has been growing positively over the past few years… What are your thoughts on our local music scene at the moment and if there is anything you wish to see happen differently? 

Totally agree that the SA music scene is thriving and happening. Really like the fact that our “insecurity” as South Africans has been shed, and we are developing our own sound; as diverse as it is. There’s still some copycat’ing kak; but that’ll always happen. The only thing I would like to see differently is this focus on fame versus the actual musical productivity. Social media and publicity is important, but only after the sound is developed and you have something to offer.

MA: Are there any local acts that you think need a special mention?

Yes, definitely! Medicine Boy, Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness (B.C.U.C.), Andra and Medicine Dolls.

[interview] WONDERboom - Top SA act to perform on Crash Test Dummies tour_Pieter Annandale

Photo Credit: Pieter Annandale

MA: You will be on the line up, as supporting act to the Crash Test Dummies, in February in CT and PTA. Are you excited for these shows? What can we expect from your set?

We are always excited to perform. And to have the opportunity to play for the fans of such an esteemed band as the Crash Test Dummies, is an absolute honour. We will try and put together a cool setlist, but will be open for adapting it once we’re on stage. Our performance will definitely be up there though.

MA: Anything that you guys are currently working on that we would be interested in hearing about?

We’re busy promoting our new album, Rising Sun, and will be gigging extensively around South Africa. A return to China in the next few months is also on the cards.

MA: Where can we follow you on Social media?

We are on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram as @WONDERboomBand

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