Now based in the USA and signed to Secretly Canadian, BLK JKS (pronounced Black Jacks) are a four piece art-rock band with thick roots in South Africa. The band returned to their hometown of Johannesburg to perform with Alicia Keys at the FIFA World Cup Kick-Off Celebration Concert. FIFA.com spoke to the band during Africa’s shining moment, the 2010 FIFA World Cup™.
FIFA.com: Hi guys, thanks for taking the time to talk to FIFA.com. Are you all football fans?
Did returning home to play the opening concert of the FIFA World Cup, stir up any special emotions for you guys?
Molefi Makananise: It’s a good thing to know that you are taking part in historical events. It means you are on the right track and that you can inspire the up and comings - those who want to also do what you do. It doesn’t only need to be about music, it can be about anything in life.
Did any World Cup moments make a special mark on your childhood?
Lindani Buthelezi: The Italian guy who missed a penalty, Baggio. He went into deep depression mode thereafter man; that was just a funny, historical memory for me.
Mpumi Mcata: For me it was seeing Gary Lineker and those guys [England] sweat trying to keep up with Roger Milla at Italy 1990. Also when Milla was doing the dance at the corner flag. That’s totally the moment for me.
If you had to describe your music in the form of one football player, who would that player be and why?
Mpumi Mcata: Doctor Khumalo of South Africa would have been perfect, so would Zinedine Zidane. Mainly for their grace. The way they move, the way they play... there’s something about it. My mother liked watching those guys play and she’s not even into football. There’s a kind of ballet that’s happening.
You guys have a pretty unconventional sound, do you feel that it is an example of the new South African cultural identity developing, or is it something that’s on its own track?
Mpumi Mcata: I think everybody in South Africa is completely on their own track to some extent because it’s so new. Everything’s branching off. People are trying to rediscover things. We’re a brand new democracy; we are 16 years old and just kind of finding ourselves. It’s the same thing with the band; it’s self-discovery and if we’re honest with ourselves then I think people will be able to relate to that honest and sincerity. It’s a high currency and I think positive things will come our way - for everybody in all industries.
BLK JKS are Molefi Makananise (bass), Tshepang Ramoba (drums), Lindani Buthelezi (vocals/guitar) and Mpumi Mcata (lead guitar).