Contributed by: EntertainmentAfrica.com News
The phone line’s crackly. The voice on the other end has almost been beaten into submission by relentless touring. But Dale Stewart’s excitement is obvious.
“We’re chomping at the bit here,” says Seether’s bassist ahead of the group’s first South African shows since 2008. “We love the audiences and the whole environment over there – so we’re going to make a good time of it.”
Part of that good time happens up there on the stage.
“It’s an amazing feeling,” Stewart admits. “A couple of years ago we were a baby band playing in bars in Pretoria to nobody and handing out fliers to anyone who’d listen.
“And now being in the position we’re in, to be able to play these shows to people who know who we are, who’ve heard our songs on the radio, is really cool. It’s a great feeling, especially live – it’s so instant – and that connection with the fans gives you such an adrenaline rush.
“It’s quite an addictive feeling and it’s the most rewarding part of what we do.”
The homecoming trip – which includes stops at Durban’s Wavehouse, Cape Town’s Grand Arena, and Oppikoppi – will allow Stewart to grab some “good South African beer and biltong”, reconnect with his family, and claim a moment of respite from a near nonstop touring schedule.
“It is quite hard being away as much as we are,” he concedes of life on the road, “but it’s what’s needed, it’s what you do. People don’t buy CDs anymore, which means bands have to get out there and get their hands dirty out on the road to keep their heads above water.
“We love playing but it’s a fulltime job and it’s difficult to have a normal life, so touring for long periods is definitely challenging,” he admits.
Not that you can tell – up there, in the spotlight, there’s nothing tired about the way he strides through rock anthems like ‘Here And Now’ or pours his emotion into ‘Broken’, the song he’s still proudest of. “It really put us on the map,” he reasons, humbly omitting to add that a steady string of hit singles has kept them there.
But, to paraphrase a Seether lyric, you’ll definitely hear those hits yelled from South Africa’s rooftops between 8 and 11 August.