IMG-20140310-WA0019

This was one unplanned event from our side, we only decided to attend the Johannesburg leg of Ramfest 2014 on Wednesday afternoon. In reality this was one hell of a scurry from Wednesday afternoon. After we finally got hold of our tickets Wednesday night, we had joy in our hearts, and a yearning for good music.

We were a crew of 3: Lucien Muller (photographer), Shané Mc Mahon (photographer number two) and me (blogger). We left our dry Pretoria-based houses on Thursday afternoon. After a quick stop at a bottle store setting us back a R1000, we headed in the direction of Witfontein. It was dark, wet, and we underestimated the tar-to-ground drop near the festival – I strongly suspect we weren’t the only one’s.

So after we got through the swamp-like road, we parked our vehicles, had a few quick drinks, and entered the festival grounds. There weren’t a lot of people at the small stage, but it must’ve been the rain which scared most of them away. We quickly claimed our seats at the beer tent and drank a lot, and I mean A LOT. We chatted the night away with other festival-goers and listened to a female vocalist performing on one of the stages – and as far as we know she had a little striptease show… we can not confirm nor deny this, but the 129 guys in the crowd loved it.

IMG-20140310-WA0017

Here’s the part where it all came unhinged: the rain fell down relentlessly on the entertainment area, and people were running for their lives. We quickly stopped at my vehicle for a refill and entered the soaked terrain. We had a seat in the beer tent with Henno Kruger and co. while some people contemplated on building an ark. We slowly trudged back to our ‘camp’ when Henno almost disappeared into a mud puddle. We had a drink or two in the car and decided to call it a night because it looked like a scene out of Jurassic Park – right before the T-Rex attacked – from where we were sitting. We saw some guy standing on the top of his car’s roof in the rain, singing the Armageddon song from Aerosmith – it was a beautiful thing.

Friday morning: Thank fuck we didn’t pitch up a tent, and why the fuck did we sleep in my car?… Two very good questions. But at least we were dry. The first thing we did Friday morning other than having a smoke and pouring a drink, was to get hold of gumboots… After a few calls and a few minutes drive, we had three pairs of durable gumboots and dry-ish feet. We were ready for anything! We had a good chuckle at the comedy on the small stage, and they were providing good entertainment for the gloomy weather. Jokes were made about current affairs including Eskom, The Oscar case and ‘Gingers For Sale’. We also caught Mr Cat and the Jackal who blew our minds with their unique style – they also informed us that right after the show they will be driving to Cape Town for the other Ramfest event happening (OUCH!)

After a few good (warm, but good) brandy refills, we had a few drinks and laughs with the chilled guys from Taxi Violence, and talked a little about the touring life and ex-girlfriend names, while we waited for the main stage to open (Why on earth did the main stage open so late in the afternoon?) After a hefty amount of drinks we parted ways with the guys, and walked to the main stage to catch ISO who had a killer show. They were fucking good and the people were loving them.

After we checked out their show, and lost the spinning wheel at the Red Heart Rum tent, we checked out Facing the Gallows freaking out on stage. I enjoyed their show, and the foul weather didn’t stop them from delivering a rock-hard performance.

We quickly ran to the car for yet another refill – and to get our hands on some much needed smoke for our lungs. We were all set when Taxi Violence came on stage, and they killed it! That’s all! They had a few glitches with sound, but they delivered a massive performance. People were going crazy for their songs, and you could see that they enjoyed every moment of it. Big thumbs up for them.

We headed to FOALS next and soaked in the energy from their set, Lucien was having the time of his life watching one of his favorite bands while ducking and diving around stage to shoot the perfect shot.

AND THEN CAME Biffy Clyro, but to our disbelief we were half dead from all the walking, and the obvious drinking. We watched their opening and stuck around for a few songs before our legs finally caved in. We were out, we walked away slowly, checking out their set while our ears were happy campers. Ramfest had its way with us, and we felt dirty.

Saturday morning came, and due to other commitments, we had to leave quite early, missing a load of great bands and lots of drinking. We were content with it because we still got to see FOALS, Biffy Clyro and co. We had our fun and all the rain made it still a very enjoyable festival.

It was all in all a very good festival, and we had a fucking great time. Meeting new people and having fun, because festivals are there to have a good time and relax to awesome music. Thank you Ramfest, we hope to see again next year.

Here are a few photos taken at Ramfest Johannesburg 2014 by  Shané Mc Mahon and Lucien Muller that we’re pretty sure will blow your mind.