Rocking the Daisies
The hippest live music festival in the Western Cape, Rocking the Daisies is a three-day musical celebration which for most involves setting up camp and diving head first into an all-day party that brings together the country’s top (primarily) rock bands performing back-to-back on the main stage. The line-up (kicking off mid-morning) might include a few solo small-time cult figures, followed by a succession of bands that range from up-and-coming to chart-topping; you will get the full spectrum of South Africa’s coolest and most respected music entertainers, although there’s not much by way of ‘black music’. The crowd tends to be a very pleasant (and sociable) mix from youngsters to veterans. Beside the live music, there’s an electronic tent for dance music junkies that gets absolutely thumping with a committed crowd of hardcore clubbers who can’t take too much ‘real’ music on the main stage; mixing it up with anything from reimagined disco and psychedelic soul to hard-as-nails electro and genre-bending hypnotic beats that range from minimal to dubstep and everywhere in between, the party here typically goes on till about 3am. And, for a more relaxed time between bouncing up and down on the dance floor, there’s a multi-genre performance festival going on as well, with everything from dance entertainments to stand-up comedy. If the idea of pitching a tent puts you off, either organize accommodation in the nearby town of Darling well in advance, or book a space in the mobile tented hotel, Kreef Hotel (literally Crayfish Hotel, www.kreefhotel.co.za) where you’ll be assured of a better night’s sleep than most (if sleeping is at all on your agenda); ask for the ‘Caviar’ option, which includes stretchers, a bedside ‘wardrobe’, a light, and even room service. Food stalls cater for essentials, and there’s a market where you can shop for all kinds of arbitrary paraphernalia.