Snatch 32 (Bar/Music Venue)
Snatch 32 is a signature Champagne/Gin bar and music venue based in Parktown North, Johannesburg. Originally it was the brainchild of entrepreneur Rory Sandilands, stylist to the stars and long-time club owner.
After joining forces with his mate Gavyn Stevens, a musician/filmmaker and photographer with a similar vision. they further developed and created a hip and intimate venue, a home for authentic musicians.
Among the 40-odd bands that passed through the venue, we are proud to have hosted exciting performances by top artists, including Arno Carstens, Locnville, PJ Powers, Dan Patlansky, Jessie Clegg, Charlie Finch, F-Spot, ChianoSky, Boo (Chris Chameleon), Albert Frost, Laurie Levine, and Guy Buttery just to name a few.
The music industry, like many others, felt the blow of the global COVID-19 Pandemic, and Snatch 32 had to close down in March of 2020 until regulations permitted larger gatherings of people and bars to reopen.
‘China Select’ Photo Essay
While on tour in the spring of 2018 to Beijing, Xian, Shanghai and the Wudang Mountains, Gavyn Stevens was struck by how the polarities of oldworld and modern Chinese culture exist in harmony.
Even today, the Taoist philosophy of Yin-Yang appears to underpin many facets of Chinese society, creating an environment where communalism blends seamlessly with entrepreneurship, mass commercialism is balanced by spirituality, and where ultra-modern style and design acknowledge and embrace ornate eastern and classical European design traditions and history.
In this Photo Essay, Gavyn has tried to capture the mood and energy of modern China, its people, and the remarkable contrasts therein. Gavyn Stevens showed this work at Snatch 32 in early September 2018 in a group photo exhibition with renowned photographers Roger Ballen and Nina Bekink.
Cameraboy (Solo Music/Video Project) 2010
The ‘Cameraboy project’ focuses on patriotism and life as a game. Cameraboy emerged from the intersection of sound and vision, revealing stories with space for imagination – diverse, postmodern and unapologetically eclectic.
Released 2 albums ‘Pop for Mom’ and ‘Land of Strange Affairs’
15 tracks published by Shure music. 3 Remixes by Eric M
All songs composed, performed and recorded by Gavyn Stevens.
Individual tracks available at: www.gavynstevens.bandcamp.com
As part of the project, numerous video clips and mini video snippets were also produced. These can be viewed on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.
I became involved with the foreign television networks during the 80’s unrest period in South Africa, first as a soundman, eventually learning the craft, language and discipline of film making. I became a professional cameraman.
I worked for all major foreign TV networks, including BBC, CNN, CBS, ABC, NHK Japan, French, and German networks to name a few, covering socio/political issues, news, features and documentaries. From 2010 onwards I was signed up as the staff cameraman for ARD German TV (Africa Bureau)
My journey with the foreign networks provided the inspiration and subject matter that gave rise to the “Cameraboy Project”.
I joined the recently formed band ‘Mango Groove’ in 1986 as the Percussionist/Drummer. The 11-piece band fusing pop, swing, and township music ‘marabi and kwela’ grew into a successful Gold and Platinum award-winning act.
After 6 years of performing locally and finally touring France, I left to pursue a career with the foreign television news networks.
The Other Band dissolved in 1982. Three of the members, Dax Butler, Mick Hope-Bailey, and Gavyn (Mojo) Stevens later formed an experimental collaboration by adding a new member to their line-up. They were now called ‘Nude Red’.
After a successful debut at the No Nukes concert in Cape Town, their previous bass player re-joined; the Other Band had now morphed into Nude Red.
In 1983 the band purchased a recording studio ‘Oak Tree Studios’ in Rosebank, Johannesburg, and renamed it Ambient Productions. The studio produced film and commercial soundtrack recordings, winning a Loerie Award.
They continued to pursue their African influences, and in 1985 recorded an album ‘Discords ‘n Dat Chords’. They were dissatisfied with the final mixes and the album was never released. Nude Red finally disbanded later that year.
More recently, the tracks have been remastered.
In 1978 four young boys decided to sell all their worldly possessions and hit the road to learn how to play instruments and how to musically cook, it was just perfect.
Thanks to these three talented friends (brothers), Dax, Mick, Larry, and their such generous spirits that made it possible to spend those many years on the road touring as a family and relying on each other.
‘The Other Band’ came together in 1978. It was initially influenced by Reggae and Ska rhythms. Their sound soon became more influenced by African rhythms and styles. Due to the lack of venues for alternative music at that time, they created their own venue near Kommetjie in Cape Town. It was known as “Off the Road” and became legendary for its ‘jols’.
The Other Band performed with local bands such as the Lancaster Band, Asylum Kids, Permanent Force, Wild youth, and many others.
In 1980 they recorded two singles (4 songs) titled Market Place, Africa, Neutralize It, and Solution on the African label of WEA records with A&R/producer Nunka Mkaphila.
Due to the social conflict at the time, 3 songs were banned from airplay by the SABC, only the A-side ‘Market Place’ was playlisted.