Band of brothers

After 40 years, musos John McGuinness and Vince Lewis have teamed up again and are preparing for the launch of their album, Finally…Greetings from Philadelphia.

John and Vince’s first recording session was way back in 1967 when they featured in Boston Primary School’s choir album.

After jamming at John’s birthday last year, these two got their act together and recorded an eclectic mix of guitar orientated songs for their first album.

So what happened during the years in between?

John played for various bands in South Africa before relocating to London in the 1980s to pursue his music career.

He signed with a small recording label and had some successes with a band called XTRAX, who won the BBC Old Grey Whistle Test’s best new band video. He was later signed as a solo artist by Lee Kramer (who previously managed Tina Turner and Olivia Newton John).

“I had a few ‘close but no cigar’ moments with UK record companies and then decided to return to South Africa after Nelson Mandela was released from prison,” he said.

John, now from Bloubergstrand, said his main focus was writing and playing original material (he has written about 500 songs).

Since returning to Cape Town, he has been squirrelling away in studios working on his own material and with other artists and only recently started gigging again.

Vince on the other hand spent most of his music life as a working muso playing with top bands throughout the country.

People may remember him from The Joe Parker band that toured the country for three years.

He was “on the road” as a pro musician for 30 years before opting out to grow plants and start Rondeberg Nursery in Philadelphia (hence the name of the album).

All instruments on the album were played, sung, engineered and produced by John and Vince at John’s studio.

* They will launch their CD at The Backyard@ Poplars on D’Aria wine farm in Durbanville on Saturday December 16, at 7pm.